“Hmm, yeah, how about an award for “emerging older poets”? Or a conference on survival strategies for emerging older poets? Or awards for surviving to be an older poet? Or a conference on ageism in poetry publishing?…”
See Richard’s post here.
I’m often struck (often) by the proliferation of conferences, awards, workshops, and panel discussions on “emerging” writers under 25. Which is not to say that young writers should not be encouraged or rewarded. But I really do think that older writers (even emerging ones — and I suspect there are plenty) have other things to contribute to the world of poetry besides remembrance of things past…and even when we do reflect on the past, we are capable of looking at it with new eyes.
This is still a nation obsessed with youth. But I wonder if this obsession–where poetry is concerned–is not also partly a product of academe, always on its quest for new, youthful blood to fill its graduate seminars, and faculty rosters.