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Poetic Amusement Paperback – August 31, 2010

3.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 136 pages
  • Publisher: Athanata Arts, Ltd. (August 31, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0972799338
  • ISBN-13: 978-0972799331
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.3 x 5.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,771,794 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By F. Yannantuono on March 24, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A well-deserved shot to the chops of Pobiz. Here is iconoclasm at its best, where everyone from hound dogs to Greek and Roman philosophers savage poetry's pop cultural moorings. Hammond, the editor of New York Quarterly, has seen it all. Funny, witty, true.
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Only in passing will I note this shoddy little book's many errors of grammar, syntax, and diction, and its redundancy (some passages, particularly citations, are repeated verbatim from one chapter to another). Suffice it to say that "Poetic Amusement" is embarrassing even by the fairly lax standards of a master's thesis -- and maybe that's no surprise, given that the author's education in "poetics" (by which term I suspect the author means nothing more than the study of fixed, ossified poetic forms) seems to have come by way of a single mentor, in the setting of a burger joint.

Even though that mentor was the late William Packard, founder and longtime editor of the New York Quarterly (and author of the mean-spirited, hilarious novel "Saturday Night at San Marcos"), it's impossible for me to believe that anything but the ethics of an old boys' network accounts for Packard's bequest of the NYQ's editorship to such an intellectual nonentity -- or for Raymond P. Hammond's being allowed to edit anything at all.

I'm no apologist for MFA programs and their institutional dominance, but Hammond adds nothing to the discussion by setting up and knocking down the straw man of oppressed MFA students forced to produce a univocal, uniform poetry. And get this: "The responsibility of agonizing revisions and decisions are [sic] left to a committee's caucus rather than to the gut tendencies of an artist who is willing to sacrifice for his art. The resultant work is left gang raped and abandoned in a dumpster, barely recognizable." That's offensive, not to mention ignorant and demonstrably untrue.

Oh, and don't be fooled by "Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
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This is a most amusing treatment of poetry as serious play. Really insightful!
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Mr. Hammond saved me from myself--this book helped me honestly see through the ineffectiveness of a piece of my own "prosetry" that I was getting undeservedly fond of (and now I hope it's finally comfortable in its own prose-y skin.) I'm no poet but I hope to understand poetry better, and as a writer of fiction, I think understanding how poetry does what it does, can only strengthen one's writing. Yes he's grouchy about all sorts of pretentiousness in poetry, but he's earned the right to be. Plus, it's kind of fun to be shaken awake from the stupor of writing that has not much to say.
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