Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Land of The Living Dead: The Great Vanity Publishing Network & Cover-up

(Note: This anonymous post also appears on Poets.net. and was the impetus for this snarky, brainchild blog. Thank you, Mr/Ms Anonymous, whoever you are! You are BRILLIANT!)

Christopher [Woodman] is like a character in a John Grisham thriller. The law firm of American Poetry, Inc. is a great Vanity Publishing Network and the cover-up is more horrible than the crime.

If not John Grisham, then the Invasion of the Body Snatchers, or Dracula, or a terrifying scenario more horrific, where poets are zombies who feed off innocent flesh: the minds, hearts, souls and money of ‘paying poetry customers,’ the would-be poet and hasty poetry reader who has scanned a few contemporary poems and said to themselves “I can do that.”

The living dead of Poetry, Inc. are no longer concerned with Poetry and its readers, Poetry and its history, for all “readers” are now would-be poets willing to pay for the privilege of being ‘poets’ in a shadowy realm of ‘contemporary anthology’ pretense, manufactured by the lawyers of Poetry, Inc. You sign on the dotted line at the nearest MFA recruitment center and agree to participate in the game: you agree to never ask why it is always night, why some things are just ‘not discussed,’ why the poets wear blank looks and carry black appointment books and blithely abet the pyramid scheme of money-laundering for the secret muse.

Woodman met a ‘respected’ official of the poetry world, a gentleman calling himself ‘editor’ and ‘poet,’ warm his voice, with unctuous flattery, but once, when Woodman looked away, this smiling editor, with teeth shining like ice, suddenly lurched towards Mr. Woodman’s neck. Woodman looked up in horror. Was it a dream? The ‘editor’ drifted back into the night, complaining he was busy, and had so many clients who needed his expertise. Woodman followed, and met up with a woman who hissed at him like a snake, warning him to leave the gentleman ‘poet’ alone. Woodman went to Policemen and Writers, to the Academy of Poets, Toads, and Spiders, seeking help. Every policeman and toad he encountered had the same blank look and—could it be?—he heard the hissing sound of that woman in a nearby room…

Madness, I tell you! Madness! The record of Woodman’s complaint! Gone! It was all a dream! Come away, Christopher, come away! In the shadows, here, down by the earthen lake, your fate awaits you, the raven flies and beneath the hidden moon, she is waiting, the proper one, with the ghost-white guidelines in her slender hands…the icy caress of the secretary muse…of Police & Writers...Poets.Ogre...

Poetry, Inc.!

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