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Conversation with Marjorie Evasco:
Is your definition of a good poem, when you're applying it to your work, different from that which you apply to the work of your students or any other writers?

Marjorie Evasco: I would use the same standards. I'm very demanding. That's why the ones who need to have their poems read by me, they have to be my good friends first. I mean, we should be friends enough for me to tell them the truth. Kasi if I'm just going to flatter, that's not going to be good for the person or for me. The workshop environment has that structure where the student can present the work and say, "You've been in the writing business for 15 years ahead of me, maybe you know more, can you please see if this is good enough?" The young writer is giving me the opportunity to read and say something about it. But if I'm not asked, I will not touch it. And then when I read poems that are published in the periodicals, my reading is going to be as stringent, as demanding, as I would be with my own poems. I would say that there's a lot of drivel being published.
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