Tuesday, January 19, 2010

on the train...

I feel rather dazed as I sit in a brightly lit and bustling railway carriage on route to Plymouth. Behind, in front, and to the side of me there is incessant chatter. I turn the radio on and listen to Radio 4. The radio host announces that Professor Phillip Gross has won a prestigious poetry prize. I've never heard of him. He gives an interview - if you can call it an interview - the show's host says more than the deliberate sounding poet whose every utterance is preceded by a long pause: he's certainly not 'in-your-face'. The piece finishes with him reading a recently written poem. It is unremarkable and I silently question what poetry - this sort of poetry - is all about. I'm not sure I see the point anymore. Only one thing stands out from the interview; twice the poet speaks of words needing to be "exact." He's right, if we are to convey meaning our choice of words must be well chosen. Unfortunately I find nothing exact about the words he uses in his poem which sounds pretentious and is best described as waffle.

No comments: