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Looking Out A Plastic Castle
Sappy Crap
Author's Note

Miscellaneous Poetry

Looking Out a Plastic Castle

Author's Note

Copyright @ 1996 Tom Davidson


To Tiffany,
who has never had anything
dedicated to her

About the Poetry

Normally this page says something about the poet, but I'm pretty boring and I can't think of anything interesting to say about myself that doesn't sound like it belongs in a singles ad. So cope.

My favorite poem in the set is probably "mr. fix-it," mainly because of the rhyme scheme and topic; I feel that a loss of faith and direction is one of the major liabilities of modern society, although (as Douglas Copeland points out) it might be a necessary price of scientific advance and multiculturalism. This issue is also addressed (although more obliquely) in "GinX" and "El-Azariyeh," both of which also deal with the human fascination with the recent past and our tendency to recycle "rebellion" in order to fill the increasingly large gaps in our social structure.

I also have a secret fondness for a lot of the experimental pieces in the Miscellanea section, since I've always been kind of a minimalist at heart. While I love Eliot (and he's obviously a major influence of mine), I strongly disagree with his elitist attitude towards poetry. Poems, in my opinion, speak at a visceral level to the human spirit, striking more directly and more evocatively than prose and perhaps even musical expression; to make poetry remote and complex and inaccessible without extensive study and a reference set, then, is to strip it of its primary advantage over other art forms. It is to Eliot's credit, by the way, that his work is able to be both expressive and complex, capable of speaking on several different levels to several different audiences; I'm still in awe.

Please don't assume, however, that any of this was easy; simple poetry, to put it bluntly, isn't. The rhyming might seem facile and the vocabulary certainly isn't Ivy League, but I'd like to assure you that, for the most part, this has been deliberate. The physical lengths and shapes of words, sounds and even semiotic connotation were all considerations of mine, and I've spent months on a single line trying to get the rhythm right. It is important, I think, for poetry to be memorable in its strength and simplicity, so I've tried to balance the delicate line between doggerel and overwrought symbolic crap. Of course, it's also true that I'm not a Great Poet; perhaps the reason my verses seem immature and simplistic is that I lack the ability to write any other way. That scares me more than I can say. So don't rub it in.

Anyway, thanks for reading this. If you've actually bought this book, thank you for that, too. I'm feeling rather poor lately, and every little bit helps; maybe, if enough of you can talk your friends into buying my stuff, I can afford to vote Republican in a few years.

Once again, too, this book is dedicated to Tiffany -- who knows why.

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