why poetry? why now?

Between the recent woes of Amiri Baraka and Tom Paulin, the White House cancellation of its February poetry event, and the resulting spate of anti-war poems, it does seem like poets are in the news a lot lately. Joshua Clover asks Why Poetry? Why now? in this Village Voice article. Clover’s answer:
“We are now into the second year of a period when words are being policed with particular vigor, hemmed in by off-the-record advisories as much as by Patriot Acts and Total Information Awareness. But such measures can’t help but suggest that words themselves matter, now more than ever. Poets have been saying that all along.”

Link via Moby Lives.

Addendum: A review of the event “Poems Not Fit for the White House,” by Kelefa Sanneh in today’s New York Times.