Marilyn Hacker


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  • ''Poetry seems to have been eliminated as a literary genre, and installed instead, as a kind of spiritual aerobic exercise—nobody need read it, but anybody can do it.''
    Marilyn Hacker (b. 1942), U.S. poet and editor. As quoted in A Gift That Cannot be Refused, ch. 7, by Mary Biggs (1990). Said in 1983.
  • ''The woman poet must be either a ... sexless, reclusive eccentric, with nothing to say specifically to women, or a brilliant, tragic, tortured suicide.''
    Marilyn Hacker (b. 1942), U.S. poet and editor. As quoted in How to Suppress Women's Writing, ch. 6, by Joanna Russ (1983). Said on November 2, 19...
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Best Poem of Marilyn Hacker

The Boy

It is the boy in me who's looking out
the window, while someone across the street
mends a pillowcase, clouds shift, the gutter spout
pours rain, someone else lights a cigarette?

(Because he flinched, because he didn't whirl
around, face them, because he didn't hurl
the challenge back—"Fascists?"—not "Faggots"—Swine!
he briefly wonders—if he were a girl . . .)
He writes a line. He crosses out a line.

I'll never be a man, but there's a boy
crossing out words: the rain, the linen-mender,
are all the homework he will do today.
The absence and the ...

Read the full of The Boy

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