Wednesday, July 16, 2003



"We have drawn our line in the sand. Our tools are everyone's tools: the simple words we use almost thoughtlessly every day, but use in our art with scrupulous honesty and precision. I am Confucian enough to believe that "All wisdom is rooted in learning to call things by the right name." And we poets understand why Dante put the defilers of language into the seventh circle of his Hell. Our liberties are defined by a few clear, simple words.

The history of poetry is filled with advocacy, private and public. It is our privilege to draw on that history and to educate our friends and neighbors -- and ourselves -- to extend the vast pleasures and wisdom of poetry as we explore ideas, working to make a peaceful world together. In telling the story, in singing the song, there is always the poetry behind the words, both the beautiful and the deceitful. The more people learn to see clearly through the deliberately warped language of this administration, the sooner we shall understand the consequences of our actions. The better our poetry, the better we come to understand the terrible damage done by inappropriate metaphor and deliberately deceptive misnomer.

Only a few well-chosen words can make peace. And even then, only when we are willing to fully inhabit those words. To live by them. By August 1st, will once again begin publishing new poetry on our web site. May we all find those few right words we can live by."

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