Perloff has a fairly long, or maybe medium sized review of David Lehman's Oxford Book of American Poetry. It begins with a good review, or survey of the large anthologies of the last 50 years or so. She does a good job with this, dry stuff, but important. She sideswipes Lehman's insistence in the Introduction to the anthology: "Not one selection was dictated by a politcal imperative." To which Perloff quips "It all depends, on what you mean by 'political in all fairness." Indeed. Lehman of course is one of the most influential, some might say careerist (certainly the most careerest of any living poet). So many of his choices have to have been made with back scratching in mind. Well, anyway he does have a lot of energy, but one is a little dismayed to find him so
central to present-day canon forming. But, back to Marjorie, who does a bang up job of chiding DL for his lack of attention to long poems. Her list is spectacular. She objects to Tom Cark's inclusion and I have to heartily agree with her. The small tip of the hat to Creeley and Snyder is not understandable, as MP says. And only four pages to LZ. not good. She picks, rightly on a short Jean Garrigue poem. Its not very important. Which is not to say that Jean Garrigue isn't important, but really. L's treatment of Pound and Stein is incomprehensible, which she doesn't exactly say, but I do. As I also say: "Who is Aaron Fogle." One thing I would like to know more about is her assertion that Donald Hall ". . .did all he could in the 1950's to block their publication [Ashbery and O'Hara].
And last but not least "Molly Peacock" instead of "Marjorie Welish?" says Marjorie P. The reason of course should be apparent. MP has more to offer DL in the Poetry game than Marjorie W. Its sad. And why two poems in the anthology with Bitch in their title? I don't even want to go there. Read Marjorie's article in the TLS of September 1, 2006. You go girl.