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How The Fuehrer Bunker was received by the Jewish intellectual community


What's the job of a poet?
WD Snodgrass Poet
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I'm not sure that I can ever say what the poet's job is. And I think every… you know, as a matter of fact, I think the only thing I can say about poets in general is that they are supposed to do the thing that only they could do, the thing that… that is specific to their particular brain. And you know… you know, every brain is different. And so every personality is… not only do you start with the different arrangements of neurons, you also then have different things that happen to them. And so… and that I'm inclined to think it's your business to find the thing that is specific to you. That will also have its echoes in other people's brains and in what — you hope — and in what they could have become. But, uh… no, I think it's… it's the individual above all that you're looking for.

American poet WD Snodgrass, entered the world of poetry with a bang winning several awards, including the Pulitzer Prize, for his first collection of poetry, Heart's Needle. A backlash followed his controversial fifth anthology “The Fuehrer Bunker”, but in recent years these poems have been reassessed and their importance recognised.

Listeners: William B. Patrick

William B. Patrick is a writer and poet who lives in Troy, New York. Among his work are the poetry volumes "We Didn't Come Here for This" and "These Upraised Hands", the novel "Roxa: Voices of the Culver Family" and the plays "Rescue" and "Rachel's Dinner". His most recent work is the non-fiction book "Saving Troy", based on the year he spent following the Troy Fire Department.

Mr. Patrick has been Writer-in-Residence at the New York State Writers Institute and has taught at Old Dominion University, Onondaga Community College, and Salem State College, and workshops in Screenwriting and Playwriting at the Blue Ridge Writers Conference in Roanoke, Virginia. He has received grants from the Academy of American Poets, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Massachusetts Artists Foundation, and the Virginia Commission for the Arts.

Tags: Poet, poetry, neuron, brain, uniqueness, individuality

Duration: 1 minute, 6 seconds

Date story recorded: August 2004

Date story went live: 24 January 2008