Tell All The Truth but Tell it Slant: Poetic Truth and Indirectness
journal contributionposted on 2020-05-01, 00:00 authored by Paul Hetherington, Cassandra AthertonCassandra Atherton
In this paper we argue that poetic truth insists on indirectness as the only possible manner of saying something truthful, deep and compelling. In this way, we flesh out the notion that ‘Poetry transfigures what it touches, so that it is revealed another way’ (Gibson, 154). Importantly, as a way into grasping ideas of ‘truth’ and ‘slant’, this paper prioritises our explorations and reflections on Dickinsonian ‘slant’ in our own poetic practice. In two case studies, we explicate prose poems from our recent sequences: Paul Hetherington’s book Palace of Memory and Cassandra Atherton’s sequence ‘Touch’, focusing on intertextuality, humour and subversion to demonstrate our own way of approaching ‘slantedness’ in our prose poems.