Poetry In Times Square

A young poet goes to Times Square to read poetry on the street. And people stop to listen. “The American public’s relationship to poetry is complicated. At best, poetry seems to be perceived as a rare salve to be applied in the wake of national tragedy; at worst it’s an elite parlor game. Much of the blame for such perceptions can be placed squarely on American poetry itself, which has privileged difficulty over clarity—in the process taking itself right out of public view. I don’t exactly fault modern American poetry for being difficult. The sensory experience of Times Square is as difficult as any poem and still we live within it. The power of great modern poetry is that it takes the monstrosity of Times Square and locates the human being at its heart.”