It’s always something. I’ve been pondering a story that I need to write this week, which involves (in an odd and tangential manner) Ted Hughes. In a weird way, Ted Hughes became the last straw which caused me to drop out of school twenty years ago. I didn’t know that much about him then, but I know more now.
Perhaps it’s too much information. A story in the Guardian brings out something I didn’t know. Besides the death of Sylvia Plath, Hughes may have also been a contributing factor in another suicide. I suppose it was the reverence that Fred Jacobs (my instructor in library science, of all things!) felt for Hughes that made me feel totally excluded from the pretentious world of snobby poetry. Tales of visiting Hughes estate, and small press books that mere mortals couldn’t hope to own really galled me. I’m afraid to learn what a really reprehensible human being he might have been.
Pete Townshend turned one of his children’s books into an album (Iron Man), but I just can’t bring myself to read Hughes again. I just plain hated it the first time; I’ve had no use for ivory tower artists.
Just looking at his pictures in the Guardian article gives me the creeps. I can only hope that his fate as dead poet laureate will be closer to Southey’s rather than Tennyson’s.