Ange Mlinko has had it up to here with all the Frederick Seidel-worship.
The stacked rhymes and deadpan singsong rhythms have nothing in common with Ezra Pound’s Cantos, for instance, which Seidel cites as a formative influence. Pound’s metrical range was matched by his emotional range; Seidel has one rhythmic brand (and I use the word advisedly) for all emotional registers. You simply can’t say that of Baudelaire, or Dante. Both Flowers of Evil and the Inferno are exquisitely beautiful works. No matter how bleak or violent, they don’t hurt your ears musically. Yet Seidel’s champions consistently and disingenuously transform his aesthetic weaknesses into virtues.