Saturday, January 19, 2008

Insecurity number 9?

Several times in the past week, I've seen references to "poets in their 20s and 30s." One was in a comment on Jeannine's blog, and two were in Poets and Writers (and I'm not even very far into the issue yet).

The context is that poets in their 20s and 30s are taking poetry in glorious new places. I can argue neither for nor against that, but it sure sounds like a good thing. However, the implication (or my insecurity?) is that the rest of us are all timid and stodgy.

For the record, I think I've been timid and stodgy all along, even in my 20s and 30s. I think it's a lot more about who I am than how old I am.

But I would hate to think that being older makes me washed up, done before I've even really started.

If anything, I may be getting a little more brave as I get older. And better. I have some great role models. Right away, Ruth Stone comes to mind.

My request: Can we embrace youth and our age, even our middle or more age?


~ said...

oh geez, I'm washed up next year! Who knew?!

(my writing is definitely better now at 39 than it was at 29- surprisingly, I take more chances)

Joannie said...

K~ You can probably tell that I don't think you'll washed up. I, too, feel that I'm a little more adventurous than I was 10 or 20 years ago, and a little better read, and more willing to explore different subjects and different poets.

jeannine said...

Didn't mean to make you feel bad! I'm 34 and hope I won't be washed up for a while! But I do review a lot of younger poets, and I think they are kind of doing things differently, which seems kind of thrilling. I am going to be teaching junior-high and high-school kids this spring and summer, so I'm extra focused now on the generation right before my own generation X (Generation Y? Something...)