To the Editor:
. . . Joseph Epstein’s point in “The People’s Poet” [May] that Carl Sandburg is not read by young people these days is more a comment on the reading habits of the young, such as they are, than on Sandburg. Want proof? Go looking for a complete bookstore these days. There are a few, but only a few, and outside of New York City, very few.
Next, Mr. Epstein seems to have trouble with Sandburg’s enormous popularity as a poet and the fact that he made a lot of money. . . . Perhaps he would prefer the world for poets as it is today. Almost none can earn a living as a poet, usually retreating to campuses where they teach and publish in obscure magazines with minuscule circulations comprised of other poets, academicians, and a few turned-off souls. . . . Features of poetry today are often lack of discipline, needless obfuscation, and ill-directed anger. At the very least, Sandburg can be understood. . . .
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