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Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Billy Collins, of course

Scared of what computers can do nowadays?  Imagine this.  I recently reviewed “A Wild Perfection: The Letters of James Wright” on Amazon.com and to my surprise the next time I logged in, my recommendations (which incidentally are not “mine” to begin with) pointed at a collection of poems by one Billy Collins.  The reason I know about Billy Collins is that an author I follow online (her blog is fabulous, see entry for A Wild Perfection) is in love with Mr. Collins; I didn’t know him at all before Ms. Patricia Digh pointed it out to me.  So in all the algorithms that Amazon.com can come up with to pair me with things I don’t yet know or haven’t read or frankly have little care for, the Collins volume of poetry was a great temptation.  Too bad I recently ordered a $5.00 book online (including shipping) and the gesture did not endear me to my wife (  Collins may have to wait for now.  

So what’s all this with poetry?  I have been a fiction person and a biography, history and philosophy for the most part—including personal essays—but lately it has been poetry creeping up on me and monopolizing my interest.

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