Shaun Shane

(196? -)

Biography of Shaun Shane

Shaun Shane poet

Shaun Shane (a pseudonym real name unknown) . There have been few men whose work is so well known and as highly acclaimed and yet whose personal life is as shrouded in mystery as that of Shaun Shane in the History of Poetry. Shane's career first began in the early 80's, publishing in small presses and doing famously standing room only readings while, it is rumored, he still was a Philosophy Major at Yale. When his work quickly came to the attention of the Literary Critic and host of the Public Radio Program, Poetry In Our Time, Harvey Alexander. Who, so struck with Shane's work, began to feature it prominently on his radio program. The filmmaker John Waters, a close friend of Alexander's, greatly impressed with Shane's work, as well, arranged a meeting between the two which was to become the beginning of a longstanding friendship, with Shane even playing the lead in a Black & White short of Waters.
But, Shane, to the great shock of his following, Alexander and Waters abandoned Public life in his late-twenties, disappearing without a trace. Though the reasons for his disappearance remain unclear, he has never addressed them, there are no records of his doing any readings or publishing for nearly two decades, when suddenly he made a reappearance in 2008. It is rumored that he had become terminally ill and his re-emergence was to reinforce the ethic of Pure Poetry or Truly Modernist Poetry (Which he felt, had been betrayed by the inept and poorly executed attempts at Post Modern verse by Contemporary 'so-called Poets ' and the Pop and Pseudo Poetry of Poetry Slams) before his death. Of which, there is some speculation may have already occurred, being that no one has seen or heard from him since 2010. His reappearance was brief and took the form of publishing in independent and small presses as well as showing up in open mics mostly in New York City. (Though it is believed, if he is still alive, he lives on the West Coast, his latest appearances being around the L.A. and the San Francisco areas.) Only to mysteriously disappear again.
He has released two collections: A Poem is Nothing and Intangible Certitude.
Shane's work is so original and singular in style and theme that Alexander and others have cited that he has invented a new motif in contemporary English Poetry, finding in contemporary English the true meter, alliteration and beauty of modern speech like no other.
Literary nothing is known of his personal life, which he has kept closely guarded. And is almost exclusively seen only reading in open mics which he once stated, he found the most authentic of venues for reading his work because it is devoid of any vestige of celebrity and hence the only thing that gets considered is the poem rather than the poet.(denouncing formal readings as cultivators of Idol worship.) Giving credence to the speculation by many, that his growing fame was the reason he gave up Poetry in the first place, citing his poem 'Fame' to substantiate their claim.


fame

like hearing
the sound
of someone
de-skinning
a baby
alive

unbearable

and driving
you to
madness

because he found fame inauthentic and false and contrary to the purposes for which he wrote poetry.

Shaun Shane's Works:

A Poem Is Nothing
Intangible Certitude

PoemHunter.com Updates

day lays

ah it's
just the
way the
day lays

sometimes
when you
misstep

one foot
upon the
other

and cause
yourself
to trip

[Hata Bildir]