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Monday, June 07, 2010

a letter to Rotterdam International Poetry Festival in it's 41st year of existence

Congratulations for managing to build an entire network of contemporary poetry around your Festival. PIW is one of the first refferance tools I use when I investigate the contemporary poetry.
I am writing you in order to express my deep concern regarding the condition of poetry today. And my intention is not to signal an other crisis. But on the contrary to point at a shift in today's poetic conscience.

More than ever, poetry seems to keep an important meaning only for those that write it. Actually the fact that poetry still held a powerfull part was allways explained by the opposition it meet. Even than this year was announced the murder of Iraqi young poet Zardasht Osman because of his writing. I live in Romania and here, since August 2009, already two of the most well known young poets already died in strange suicides.
Poetry not only atracts but searches opposition and this opposition is not necesarly violent. The opposition that gives strengh to poetry today can be also indiferent.

But the main opposition is not outside poetry but, as ever inside it. Because the same who write it too many times forget to consider their art with a profesional standard that should be at least corect.
The opportunities for financing and supporting poetry tend to be oriented toward poetry that is either unhamrful or is deprived of any interest in investigating the poetic potential of our time.

This will bring today's poetry to the spectacular overtrone of academic values. Of course this shouldn't be something new, but, given the global acces to internet and curent means of comunication, this might be a very fast change in the means of poetry.
As your efort was allways to promote poetry, please consider this call as an argument to develope and use tools that can connect the poetry that has been writen fo the last 150 years with the poetic posibilities of today. We still do not have a map of contemporary poetic tendences and I haven't heard even an intention of developing anything close to this.

best wishes

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