Marjorie Perloff, in conversation with Charles Bernstein, assesses the influential anthology The New American Poetry 1945–1960
Monday, 19 May 2014
"But so far as the big debate prompted by the [Donald] Allen anthology goes—the debate between the raw and the cooked—let me say that if I had to choose between Robert Lowell and Denise Levertov, I’d pick Robert Lowell. And although Don Allen was a good friend of mine and I admire his book enormously, I think there are plenty of poets in that anthology that aren’t very good. Just because they had the right poetics, you see, doesn’t make them good; that issue has always been a problem for me. I can’t admire poets just because they have the right poetics."