Little Emerson

11 June 2005

Drizzle, Rain, Deluge

Chris Villar - Rain
Chris Villars - Is H20 really that complex?

The first batch of poems out and already some editors are coming back with their sort of editorial comments on the process. One editor says (and I’ll camouflage the writing as best I can):

anyway, yes i do feel like a bitch nonetheless. though i do not think this is necessarily a bad thing. i do know that when i am in a position of editing some kind of publication of poetry, i've not made apologies that i was looking for a certain kind of work. i think it's easier to practice that kind of honesty, telling writers, "i am looking for this." and having them send me work accordingly. some would call it nepotism. which is fine.

That’s after a full set of rejections. What’s interesting to me is the obvious conflict that develops when one faces poetry on poetry’s terms, without the ideologies and prejudices one cannot entirely escape from. Obviously, this editor would prefer to read the kind of poetry she would like to read. I find the editor’s comment extremely sincere. But here she cannot. She cannot ask for what she wants and must try to do with what is. And this is so because as I was telling L. Trent recently poems show up at your door in all kinds of guises and at the most inopportune times. How does one prepare for them? How does one serve a dinner to differences? I ought to like this but….

But there is a challenge to expected ways. In my country—in Galicia, Spain—we say it doesn’t rain to everyone’s choice. (Rain here is multi-layered, like Inuit snow.) And it doesn’t. It doesn’t rain to everyone’s liking.

Poets take note.


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