This Day in Death

11.11.12: Poet Jack Gilbert – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 9:06 pm November 16, 2012

Poets do it with their diction.

 

Whenever my body’s death sense tingles in iambic pentameter I know that either a.) a poet has just died, or b.) my body is trying to impress some liberal arts chick. Probably one with purple hair who spells her name all crazy, like Krysteena or Jessicka or something. Give it up, man. You’re never even coming close to that.

Today it’s the former, as poet Jack Gilbert has passed away at the age of 87. Oh, what’s that? You’ve never heard of Jack Gilbert? Maybe that’s because he stone cold didn’t give a single hearty fuck about, you know, doing much of anything:

Famous for eschewing fame, he did not go to writers’ conferences or cocktail parties, gave readings sporadically and did not publish a great deal, either. His output over a half-century included a mere five slim volumes; his “Collected Poems,” which [Gilbert’s publisher Alfred A.] Knopf brought out earlier this year, squeezed the entire oeuvre into 400 pages.

That 400 pages becomes even less impressive when you realize that half of those pages were just Gilbert doodling pictures of dinosaurs and calling John Updike a pussy. Maybe he should’ve used a bigger font, which worked pretty smoothly on some of my dumber English professors. I like to think that Mr. Cortada eventually realized that that Times New Roman was actually 12.4 point, and the resultant shame at his failure to catch it in time was the cause of his descent into alcoholism and subsequent firing. I dunno, I guess I just like to dream.

Also, I’d like to point out that I originally had a joke about how that picture up there was taken just moments after Gilbert went down on an elderly Erica Jong, but then decided to hide it down here for us to enjoy after all the stuffed shirts left following the block quote. I’m getting really good at internetting.

 

Source: The New York Times

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