Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Great Regulars: I have heard the poem described as offensive--

selfish and patriarchal--precisely for the phrase "here doth lie/Ben Jonson his best piece of poetry." For some readers, those words, with the poet's name, neglect the child and efface the child's mother, emphasizing the poet's self-regard and his art. But poetry means making, and the infant's body, what "here doth lie" is that making--a mortal thing, and though a source of parental joy not the child's immortal soul, that Jonson vows to love.

from Robert Pinsky: Slate: A Poet by Any Other Name


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