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It should be possible for poets to have their work appraised by disinterested and representative readers. Testing a new prototype first, I asked Porlock and Siegel participants and sympathizers not to render their own opinions of my work but to forward an email to lay friends or colleagues who might look at poems on my website. I hoped they in turn would consider sending the email to other readers who aren’t poets. No one was to feel obligated to respond to it, even to acknowledge receipt. Respondents wouldn’t be named or quoted without their permission when I reported results in this issue. 


Friends, colleagues and other poets can provide encouragement but might not assure poets that they’ve written well. They could, however, help poets make the acquaintance of the great audience Whitman thought poetry needed, which Porlock and Siegel appraisers represented.


No reader responded. Poets in a university setting might try something like this, providing anonymous and disinterested appraisals to each other.

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