Saturday, September 24, 2011

Poetry Friday: Poetry Goes Mainstream?

(A day late on this post, but that's okay!)

Recently discovered in my mailbox:

Included among the coupons, you'll find "gems" such as this:

a pick-me-up perk
how about another cup?
two o'clock delight

and this:

fresh breath on a brush
mint polish for your choppers
make your momma proud

Some questions come to mind:

If the #2 retailer in the world is using poetry to sell Tide, Dasani, and Hefty, does that mean poetry has gone mainstream?

Will the average junk mail recipient really "get" what it's all about?

Are there some ancient Japanese poets rolling over in their graves as they see their beautiful form, written to celebrate the beauty of nature, hijacked to sell trash bags? (I checked the back of the booklet for an apology to Issa or Basho, but found none.)

I guess I don't know the answer. I don't know whether to find it cute or to be cynical about it. I don't know if I should be happy that Target has essentially tricked possibly millions of non-poetry readers into reading poetry.

I'll let you be the judge. Please let me know your thoughts by leaving a comment.

The awesome blog Picture Book of the Day hosted the Poetry Friday roundup yesterday. It's not too late to check it out!


  1. Great blog and post! Please join Poetry Advocates for Children & Young Adults. Your energy and love for poetry would be most welcome:

  2. Not sure what the answers are, either, but I do love to think of whatever ad-agency employee wrote those haikus - they're kind of clever, and I bet he or she loved the temporary gig.