June 13, 2007

Poets die young?

In the Foreword to the Best American Poetry 2005, the series editor, David Lehman writes about a study published in April 2004 in the Journal of Death Studies that revealed that poets tend to die younger (age 62, on average) than other writes (playwrights at 63, novelists at 66, and nonfiction writers at 68).

Ofcourse this was from a study of almost 2000 dead writers from different countries and different centuries...and so the conclusions of this "study" can perhaps be easily argued against but I say only a poet could come up with an appropriate riposte to this :)
Franz Wright, who learned earlier in the same month that he had won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize in poetry, was asked to comment on Professor Kaufman's study. "Since in the U.S., the worse you write the better your chances of survival, it stands to reason that poets would be the youngest to die," he said gloomily.
Game, Set, Match... to the poets! :)

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