Letter from Poetry Magazine

Letter to the Editor

by Dante Di Stefano

Dear Editor,

To say that artistic self-assertion is a hallmark of immaturity in rap, as Adam Kirsch does, and that it is an adolescent art form implicitly in need of tutelage, is to grossly misunderstand the trope of self-aggrandizement in hip-hop lyricism. Braggadocio leads to an exploration of language and self in the world, a momentary stay against confusion that has as much to do with truth and beauty as any lines published in Poetry magazine in the past decade. I’d go so far as to claim that this self-reflexivity is more mature than some of the obfuscated investigations of self and world that masquerade as poetry today.

binghamton, new york

Originally Published: April 1, 2011

Poetry is looking for thought-provoking responses to work published in the magazine, as well as letters that raise new questions about the state of contemporary poetry. To send us your letter, please fill out all the fields below.

If we choose to use your letter, we will notify you by phone. If you have not heard from us within two weeks of sending your letter, you may assume we will not be using it. All letters may be edited for length and clarity, and may appear online, in print, or both.

Please do NOT send poetry submissions to this account. See Submission Guidelines for further information and policies regarding poetry submissions.


* All fields are required


This prose originally appeared in the April 2011 issue of Poetry magazine

April 2011

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.