Return of The Poetry Foundation

W Sepia
Alan ‘Foet-eyes’ Cordle

You all know by now about my little incident with the Poetry Foundation.  In addition to deletion of politely written and signed posts by me at Harriet, a staffer banned several other posters, without explanation, and finally trolled my personal site, searching for my name, along with the words “dumbshit” and “asshole.”

One suspect, Travis Nichols, has more reason to hide his tracks than the second.  The second suspect turned our inquiry about Harriet policy into his own little pity party.  Reluctantly, I took his name off of my blog . . . for now.  If he’s truly not involved with what happened, he should have, at the very least,  advocated for us.  As far as I know, he didn’t.  Not all librarians are proponents of free speech.

I’d admired Poetry (the paper version) for its willingness to print negative reviews and dissenting views.  Harriet is the party-line opposite, the super-suck-up-fest.  And it’s dying.  I mean, come on . . . Amber?  Shall they invite poets Leonard Nimoy and Ally Sheedy to guest blog too?

It’s no surprise that Scarriet‘s been getting substantial traffic since its launch.  It’s even less of a surprise that the Poetry Foundation person is monitoring our every move.  As you can see below, on October 8 he visited my personal blog, and bungled his effort to mask his identity with a web-based proxy called “hide my ass.”  Sorry dude, it didn’t.

hide_my_ass

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3 Comments

  1. cowpattyhammer said,

    October 13, 2009 at 6:50 am

    Alan,
    I think this is really important, and I do hope The Poetry Foundation is listening.

    Somebody in The Poetry Foundation office is “hiding his ass” in a most inappropriate way, and to me that feels more like mooning. Yes, somebody at The Poetry Foundation is mooning Alan Cordle during office hours!

    I had a very similar experience on Poets.org, and The Academy of American Poetry too had to sit up and take notice. I had had the audacity to mention on the site a certain Editor and Publisher who had written me a most inappropriate letter asking for money, and suddenly my lights went out at the Academy site. Yes, I was banned for mentioning something entirely within the public domain, something that had involved 100s of other poets, and had been discussed openly in Poets and Writers Magazine shortly before.

    At the very same time it emerged that the Academy’s On-line Editor had been short listed for an important prize by the very same Editor and Publisher — and wonder of wonders, the Academy’s wagon’s were drawn into a tight circle, I was accused of writing abusive letters to the Poets.org staff, not of maligning the Editor and Publisher in question, and all my threads were summarily deleted.

    On the other hand, that On-line Editor is no longer on the Academy roster, so apparently someone decided that even if there was no fire the smoke was an embarrassment.

    As I’ve always said, I hope very much that that On-line Editor was not involved in my having been banned, and I have no proof at all, just circumstantial evidence. On the other hand, Poets.org put up a huge smoke-screen around the event, which may also have had nothing to do with the fire, but otherwise, hey, why fight it in such a warped and underhanded way? Because something sure did happen — as something sure did happen on Blog:Harriet. There were four whole bodies in the Harriet wreckage, and look at the site now?

    More anon on that one right here, needless to say. And we will post an article on the Poets.org affair very soon as well, so stay tuned.

    Christopher Woodman

  2. thomasbrady said,

    October 13, 2009 at 3:07 pm

    “I’d admired Poetry (the paper version) for its willingness to print negative reviews and dissenting views. Harriet is the party-line opposite, the super-suck-up-fest. And it’s dying. I mean, come on . . . Amber? Shall they invite poets Leonard Nimoy and Ally Sheedy to guest blog too?”

    I believe Travis Nichols is having talks with Jewel. Isn’t Travis playing in Jewel’s band? Also, there’s a rumor that Tupelo Press prizes are being offered to anyone who can write a really nasty description of Alan Cordle or Christopher Woodman in 500 words or less. Joan Houlihan will then hand-carry the description to the editorial offices of Poets & Writers and they will publish it–and save poetry at last.

  3. thomasbrady said,

    October 13, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    Two, one two three four
    Ev’rybody’s talking about
    Foetry, Poetry, Coterie, Notary
    This-tea, that-tea, TV, pretty-me

    All we are saying, give Amber a chance
    All we are saying, give Amber a chance

    C’mon
    Ev’rybody’s talking about Jorie Graham,
    Houlihan, Shim-sham, Woodman, GOD DAMN,
    Harriet, Scarriet, Marry-It,
    Bishops and Lowells, and Jeff Levines,
    And submarines,
    Rabbis and Pop eyes,
    And bye bye, bye byes.

    All we are saying, give Amber a chance
    All we are saying, give Amber a chance

    Let me tell you now
    Ev’rybody’s talking about
    troche, hokey, anapest, give-it-a-rest,
    foundation, regulation, instigation,
    poet nation, impatience,
    Congratulations.

    All we are saying, give Amber a chance
    All we are saying, give Amber a chance

    Ev’rybody’s talking about
    John and Fanny, Crowe Ransom, Allen Tate,
    Penn Warren, Bobby Dylan, Billy Collins,
    Freddy Seidel, Ezra Pound, Travis Nichols,
    Allen Ginsberg, Alan Cordle, David Cross,
    Terreson, embarrassin’, Desmond Swords

    All we are saying, give Amber a chance
    All we are saying, give Amber a chance