Q: Bob, what about the situation of American poets. Kenneth Rexroth has estimated that since 1900 about 30 American poets have committed suicide.
A: Thirty poets! What about American housewives, mailmen, street cleaners, miners? Jesus Christ, what’s so special about 30 people that are called poets? I’ve known some very good people that have committed suicide. One didn’t do nothing but work in a gas station all his life. Nobody referred to him as a poet, but if you’re gonna call people like Robert Frost a poet, then I got to say this gas station boy was a poet too.