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Being a published poet is no more necessary qualification to write about poetry as being an elected MP is to write about politics

  • Reviews are not to help poets improve their writing; a review of a finished poetry book doesn’t need sympathy for the work behind it; reviews aren’t workshops.
  • Poets’ critical frameworks, if they have any – some consciously avoid them – , tend to be those conducive to their own creativity, to their writing rather than their reading.
  • Criticism isn’t an appreciation of what it is to write poems, only what it is to read them.