On Poetry and Uncertain Subjects

Underwood, J W. 2018. On Poetry and Uncertain Subjects. Poetry, 213(1), ISSN 0032-2032 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

An excerpt from a work in progress: 'Not Even This: Essays on Poetry and Uncertainty' and adapted from an earlier version of the essay published in, 'The Poetry Review, 107:4, Winter 2017' for inclusion in 'POETRY' magazine. May 2018.

The essay re-examines how poetic discourse relies upon language's uncertainty as an interpretive system. Rather than arising from theoretical consideration, the experience and negotiation of uncertainty is central to a poet's practice, because poems are designed to necessitate the imaginative participation of an unknowable, imagined other. Rather than being an impasse, this uncertainty, it is argued, is central to how poems work towards inter-subjective exchange and dialogue.

Item Type:



Poetic discourse, Language

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

English and Comparative Literature


11 April 2018Accepted
10 May 2018Published

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

30 Apr 2018 12:10

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 16:45



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