Today is also “the people’s poet” Milton Acorn‘s birthday (1923 – 1986).
Here’s Acorn on Frye in what is arguably a Menippean satire, “On Not Being Banned By Nazis…” in More Poems for People:
After all, the fascist poet, Ezra Pound,
Who continues to pass off his preposterous
common and dull Cantos as very profound, also condemned
Academics. The fast-rising patriotic poet
Robin Mathews is a professor. Pound was not.
Obviously, when I was saying academics, I meant some-
I now realize that what I meant was “Imperial
Academics” – such as Northrop Frye, who in the past did
more than any other man to abolish everything native
and non-European in our literature.
Filmed interviews with Al Purdy and Milton Acorn on poetry and socialism after the jump.