Billy Collins, U.S. Poet Laureate from 2001 to 2003, tells us in the second stanza of the above named poem that
"the trouble with poetry is that it encourages the writing of more poetry."It is a sobering thought, also that the former national poet laureate must keep his day job as a 'distinguished professor of English at Lehman College of the City University of New York.'
Indeed, now the reigning Poet Laureate of New York State, Collins' latest collection is a quick read that begs to be poured over slowly again and again.
His take on proofreaders and poets declares
"the poets are at their windows/because it is their job for which/they are paid nothing every Friday afternoon."And, as odd as it may seem, despite the pay and day-job thing, this poetry being created by staring out the window, or at the sea, or the squares of buildings, is something that calls from within.
If I can just tear myself from this keyboard and wander into the rainy December morning, perhaps I shall catch something as obvious as whether or not Zamboni loves me or will call back from beyond as Collins says in The Revenant
"I admit the sight of the leash/would excite me/but only because it meant I was about/to smell things you had never touched."
Collins is a peach and The Trouble With Poetry is full of plums.
Click here to order from Amazon: The Trouble With Poetry by Billy Collins
Copyright © 2005 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission. Updated May 2008
The Trouble With Poetry-part two