Wow! This is a busy day for the blog. How many posts am I going to make today anyway?
This post was inspired by a developing story brought to me by my wife Tammy. First, she found this post on Atlanta poet Collin Kelley's Modern Confessional blog: http://collinkelley.blogspot.com/2008/10/my-poem-at-forgodotcom.html.
It talks about an online "anthology" that is "publishing" poems by poets who are online from Jorie Graham to, well, Collin Kelley. Even some of my friends, such as Luc Simonic and Pris Campbell, are in this mega-nthology. There's only one catch: None of the poems were actually written by the poets.
Anyway, Tammy also found some other blogs discussing this odd anthology:
From Amy King's Alias blog: http://amyking.wordpress.com/2008/10/04/the-author-resurrected/
From Reb Livingston's Home-Schooled By a Cackling Jackal blog: http://cacklingjackal.blogspot.com/ (check out the October 5 post)
Also, to check out the source, go to: http://forgodot.com/.
(Really, you should check out the list of poets for the first issue. After a while, your eyes will start to cross--poetically, of course.)
So, this is probably some kind of joke on poets and the universe, but does it make it right? I don't consider myself an elitist or a prude or anything like that, but poets who are in the anthology AND upset do have a legitimate gripe. For one, the poems aren't funny (if that was even the intent). And second, people who may be searching out a poet's work and find these horrible poems online may write off that particular poet as someone the potential reader no longer wants to read.
This site is NOT an obvious satire, and so poets could very easily be victimized by the misrepresentation of their work. This is especially damaging to lesser known poets--and, yes, there are a lot of them in the first issue.