Jon Corelis put this up at poetryetc ...
Washington (CNS) - In a surprising twist on the administration's economic stimulus plan, a proposal is being floated to include funds for the purchase of poetry in the program.
According to White House congressional liaison aide April Narr, the proposal is still under development, but it is conceived as involving substantial grants to American poetry publications to pass on to their contributing poets in payment for their work. "The working idea," said Narr, "is to consult experts to draw up a list of the hundred best established poetry journals in the country, and give them federal economic stimulus grants so they can pay their poets much more for their work. The target figure is $1,000 per line."
Though some may question the effectiveness of trying to restart the American economy by paying money to poets, Narr maintained that "the whole idea of the economic stimulus plan is to get people to buy things, and why should buying poetry be any different from buying apples or toothpaste?"
Since poets are typically starving artists, Narr continued, they would be likely to spend their increased revenues on basic foodstuffs, such as bread, and usually being bohemian types they would also spend the money on wine and cheese, making this part of the stimulus "potentially of significant benefit to our nation's baking,wine-making, and dairy industries."
Narr admitted, though, that there was some concern that the proposed $1,000 per line payments might result in a proliferation of poems with very short lines.
Asked if she herself is a poetry fan, Narr replied, "Yes, I am a great fan. In school I got to recite The Bells by Edgar Allen Poe in a pageant."