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“Fiction writers have to be interested in people. That’s not required of poets. Poets just need a deep interest in themselves.” – Billy Collins

I saw Billy Collins reading this morning at Hume-Fogg High School here in Nashville. He read a lot of my favourites (but not “Weighing the Dog” or “Hangover“): “Ballistics,” “A Dog on his Master,” “The Death of the Hat,” “Feedback,” “Forgetfulness,” “The Golden Years,” “The Lanyard,” “Oh My God” (“The past tense of ‘Oh my God’ is ‘I was like Oh My God’,” he said, which is apparently something he’s said before), “The Revenant” and “Schoolsville” (“There’s a certain term limit on enthusiasm for teaching,” he said). My favourite thing he said was this: “To be a writer is to have an opportunistic view of experience.”

In other news, Every Day Poets has accepted another of my poems, and the Folded Word anthology containing my picfic tweets (“Stolen Lighters” and “Work Requirements“) On a Narrow Windowsill: Fiction and Poetry Folded onto Twitter is now available for pre-order.

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  1. Wow, I couldn’t disagree more with that title quote. I think Homer cared a hell of a lot about people or he wouldn’t have written the poems he did. And really: my self? Is a a singular people.

    Saturday, November 13, 2010 at 9:05 pm | Permalink
  2. He was joking around.

    Sunday, November 14, 2010 at 9:33 am | Permalink