The preceding Poetry Note on Carmen Starnino’s “Poetry & digital personhood” apparently struck a nerve and provoked some thoughtful responses from writers on Facebook about what poetry actually is or means for us.
I was particularly reassured by a direct email from David Brayley, who can speak from professional and personal experience on both sides of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) / human poet divide. David wrote:
“Carmen Starnino’s article resonated with two of my personalities: the poet, and the technologist. We don’t think there is anything to fear from mechanical poets. The engineers who built a machine that cranks out verse lack a basic understanding of how poetry happens. They mistook the artifact for the art. It may be possible for a poem-shaped blob of words to emerge from an algorithm, but that algorithm cannot have the experience of writing a poem, and will not feel the thrill a poet feels when words condense spontaneously from the vapour of language itself.”
Thank you, David!