Letters


KOCH IS IT

Re Joshua Clover's "Poetry Nation" [November 27-December 3]:

In his thunderous credo-bellowing poem "My Olivetti Speaks," Kenneth Koch, may he rest in peace, wrote:

"If half the poets in the world stopped writing, there would still be the same amount of poetry.

"If ninety-nine percent of the poets in the world stopped writing poetry, there would still be the same amount of poetry. Going beyond ninety-nine percent might limit production."

In a literary version of the U.S. government's farm subsidies, Poetry Magazine editor Joseph Parisi should set aside an amount of his annual income to pay poets not to write a book of poems that year—or, in certain extreme cases, never write again.

Those in the second category would be more than welcome to become literary critics.

Jane St. James
Clinton Hill

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