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In this very recent poem, Tate engages us on the topic of what constitutes poetry. It is interesting for readers to discuss whether his concepts here might seem exclusive, on the one hand, and dismissive of ordinary life experiences, on the other. Lines 36–43 introduce images that reflect bizarre sorts of action, for many persons equate the unusual with the poetic. It is not poetry, goes the poem’s argument, to place the statue of a rhinoceros next to the tweezers, and perform ritualistic magical movements. It is also not poetic to have cocktail parties and to do charity work, and to perform helpful acts for animals (the baby squirrel) and for people with flat tires, no matter how good these acts might seem.
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