‘Why do we hate the crow?’ courting controversy

My poem ‘Why do we hate the crow?’ is on ABC Radio National (all on it’s lonesome) this Saturday at 2.35pm (I am told) after the 360 documentary.

You can also listen on the ABC website here (I have put it up before so feel free to skip if already listened to it).

It appears to be courting controversy – bwhahahaha – with an irate listener saying ‘we hate that poem’ (you can read the comment here).  They have sort of missed the whole point of the poem and think I am having a dig at the crow, which could not be further from the truth. I am a great admirer of the intelligent crow. If I am having a dig at anyone it would be your yobbo on the street who would shoot a crow quicker than reversing his monaro out the driveway. The poem is about our fear of death and the motif of the crow as messenger of death.

The commenter also notes that ‘stilted prose shuffled into verses does not make poetry.’ I agree totally, that is why poets use metaphor, imagery, metre, rhythm, sound, and other devices 🙂

But I do admire the commenter for standing up for the crow!

17 thoughts on “‘Why do we hate the crow?’ courting controversy

Add yours

  1. ‘we hate this poem’. what, we? did several people get together and take turns punching letters on the keyboard? or is it some pro-crow rights organization? with a ready made quid pro-crow comment form that is coded to jump at the sound of certain words, like “beady eyes”. maybe its a phrase politically correct crow-activists are sensitive to and offended by
    hahahahahahahahaha too funny – controversy has a way of forcing explanations, but its hard to believe someone didnt “get” what the poem is about, especially as it was done so beautifully.

  2. If a poem engenders a strong emotion…and made a person think…then as a poet have we not accomplished something important…even if they did “miss the boat” about what we were saying….random thought…I really like that poem.;-)

  3. I agree with slpmartin – a strong reaction to a poem means you’ve made people think and feel which is a good thing!

    I’ve just read an excellent book about crows (and I’ll review it on Crafty Green poet quite soon)

  4. Go Gabe! It’s great to see a few listeners with their feathers ruffled. I hope that he or she goes back to the poem and has a second, third, fourth etc… reading and begins to let the poem work its magic. It obviously hit them hard the first time round.

  5. It’s incredible that you’re getting airplay on Radio National, Gabrielle. It’s good for poetry and it’s good for you and even for the many crow loving folk out there that won’t tolerate even the suggestion of nastiness for their totem bird. What I find interesting is how we see ourselves in these creatures. I’ve never had a problem with the crow or raven. But I do often dislike the scavenging seagull. Or the territorial magpie. The only thing about the crow is that it doesn’t have a song, and maybe that’s that fellow’s problem. So he makes his nose while he waits for you to sing again.

    1. Thanks Alec – the territorial magpie can be very scary (I have been poked in the head by more than one of them and its horrible – but they do have the beautiful song to compensate).

  6. Stilted phrases from an anonymous source do not make a meaningful comment. Talk about missing the point. Jeez. I think you should write a series of poems just to piss that person off. May I suggest Crows 2, More Crows, Crows Again, Here Come The Crows, Don’t Stone The Crows and the Gothic extravaganza – Murderous Crows. But then that’s just me – I like to stir things up 👿

  7. Commentary can be difficult to listen to, but indirectly that comment demonstrates — as others have said — the forcefulness of the poem. That the poem has an ironic voice might be a little subtle for a reader with a fast trigger. And though you realize that, it has to ouch just a tad. Price of success! Congrats again on having gotten this poem produced with such neat reading and background scenic-soundings! And on major radio play, super wow! Congrats, congrats!

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