Thursday, September 23, 2010
geoffrey hill | accessibility
Accessible is a perfectly good word if applied to supermarket aisles, art galleries, polling stations and public lavatories, but it has no place in the discussion of poetry and poetics. Human beings are difficult. We're difficult to ourselves; we're difficult to each other and we are mysteries to ourselves; we are mysteries to each other. One encounters in any ordinary day far more real difficulty than one confronts in the most "intellectual" piece of work. Why is it believed that poetry, prose, painting, music should be less than we are? Why does music, why does poetry have to address us in simplified terms, when, if such simplifications were applied to our own inner selves, we would find it demeaning?
Professor of Poetry, Oxford University
from "Who's Afraid Of Geoffrey Hill?" by Gregory Wolfe, Image Journal, Summer 2010