Autumn 2000



Dear Editor:
this is just your interpretation of what american poetry is/i have known so many true poets who thrive on expressing what their lives are about/now of course there are needs for your "pale-male-stale-yale-high page silence" but those walls are surely crumbling around you/ i've heard 10,000 poets read in the last ten years/read thousands of times/sat on panels and tv shows with the likes of paul beatty/amiri baraka/ginsberg/maggie estep/dana bryant/sapphire/willie perdomo/99/edwin torres/dael orlander-smith/miquel algarin/saul williams and so may more poets who you fail to even acknowledge exist/i have done poetry/literacy workshops in prisons and "urban terrorist neighborhood" schools all over this country/i've written an award winning broadway musical-"Bring In Da Noise/Bring In Da Funk" and have been nominated for Tony's and Grammy's-made five spoken word cd's started my own label/been on mtv-arsenio-john stewart-charlie rose etc/and know so many others who you refuse to recognize out there fighting the good fight against voicelessness/ so please don't insult me with your eady's and dove's and your favorite poem contests and white bread poet laureates and silly sonnets of birds and plains and trains/i don't want to sit at the table to have a nine course meal with you/but how about inviting us 'ta lunch sometime/remember this: more people saw us on mtv's spoken word unplugged on one night than have purchased all of the books but robert pinsky-who-by the way-i've heard read ten times/it amazes me how he speaks about the importance of saying the poem/how the musicalty of poetry is really it's most dynamic aspect/then i listen to him and realize, "this idiot is tone deaf..."

reg e. gaines




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