The internet, Facebook, Twitter, blogs, websites, iPad, iPod, podcasts, digital video and who knows what else. What do they all mean for the poet qua poet? For Poetry? Is it still pretty much where the Gutenberg press left it? Is Poetry technology-proof? Below are the ten questions we are posing to a group of illustrious contemporary poets in our fearless ongoing quest to exploit other people’s wisdom in general and on this topic in particular. Read on!

1. Characterize your general attitude as a poet towards technology.

2. Do you use Facebook in your capacity as a poet? If so, how, and what are its upsides and downsides? If not, why not?

3. Do you use Twitter in your capacity as a poet? If so, how, and what are its upsides and downsides? If not, why not?

4. What other technologies – including blogs, websites and podcasts – do you employ in your capacity as a poet? Explain how, and the upsides and downsides of each. If none, explain why.

5. What do you dislike most about how other poets use technology?

6. What do you like most about how other poets use technology?

7. Technology is enabling poets today to take poetry off the page in ways that were previously inconceivable. Either comment on this piece by Tom Konyves or provide a link to and comments on a different piece of work that uses technology to take the poem off the page.

8. Do you use technology as an integral element of your poetry? If so, how? If not, why not?

9. What has technology done for or to Poetry?

10. What should Poetry do with or about technology that it has not yet done?


Eric Elshtain
Sandra Beasley
John Vick
Dave Bonta
January O’Neil
Ron Silliman
Cati Porter
Chris Hamilton-Emery
Ren Powell
Collin Kelley
Amy King

Poets who have answered the ten questions on their own blogs:

Rik Roots
Caroline Crew

19 thoughts on “”

  1. um, aren’t most of the “illustrious” poets you’re interviewing deadtree poets?

    if I’m wrong, forgive me—

    some of these illustrids, don’t you have to buy their deadtree books to read their poetry; they’re not posting it on their blogs for free open access perusal, or offering their books for free in pdf downloads, are they?

    if I’m wrong, i apologize

  2. Beasley for example, if anyone wanted to read her poetry they’d have to buy her deadtree books, she doesn’t post all her poetry on her blog for open access perusal, and offer free pdfs of her work—

    she posts her prose on her blog, not her poetry—

    she’s an offline poet

    1. Hi Bill, thanks for stopping by. I hope you noted Sandra’s response: http://bit.ly/bG5uu6

      Posting one’s work for open access perusal is one way poets can use technology, but just one way among myriad. This series is attempting to take a fairly broad look at the places where poetry and technology intersect – hope you continue to read the responses as they are posted! Best, Nic

  3. it’s the phoney misnomer of it I object to: if you don’t publish your poetry on your poetry blog, why is it called a poetry blog? what makes it a “poetry blog”?—

    why don’t you be honest: why not term it what it is in most cases (Beasley et al):

    a dead-tree advertisement blog,
    a pobiz career blog,
    a PR blog,
    a notification of my upcoming dead-tree publications and my readings blog—

    unlike Beasley and most of you, I post my poetry on my poetry blog, all my poetry, rough drafts and all—

    (hey, that must be why my poetry blog is never listed on the “100 Best Poetry Blogs”—)

    (isn’t that why Beasley is always on the “100 Best Poetry Blogs” list, because she never posts her poetry on her poetry blog—?)

    when are all you “poetry bloggers” going to stop lying and stop your hypocrit shit, and start admitting what your blogs really are,

    because your poetry blog without your poetry is


  4. Hey, Nic. Thanks for adding my blogpost to the standing page (though you need to add an ‘l’ to the end of the link to make it work – damn technology!)

  5. @Bill Knott – Some of us mediocrities do, indeed, post all our work online. It seems you’re too busy posting your usual egocentric vitriol to actually follow links.

  6. elsewhere in here you say you are on facebook, but i canna find the Very Like A Whale Captain! Sorry, having a Star Trek “Scotty” flashback…urm…

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