Still in a very plastic hot-wax indeterminate sort of state about critiquing others’ poetry. Where I used somehow to be able to just march in briskly say oh, yes, this and oh, yes, that, I now don’t seem to be able to determine what this or that or anything else is any more.
Once a writer has got beyond the usual yeek-cliches-and-abstractions stage and has stopped obssessive-compulsive telling, once they have a good grip on the basics of the craft – what is there to separate one poet from another but the personal taste of the reader? We respond to what we read the way we are.
Critiquing others’ work now just seems an exercise in talking about myself. And a rather futile one at that.
Criticism is a misconception: we must read not to understand others but to understand ourselves, as secretary-of-his-sensations Emile Cioran would have it.