Las Vegas Sun

October 22, 2014

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letter to the editor:

Officer’s poetry snaps stereotype

Joe Schoenmann’s story about Lt. Harry Fagel, the Metro Police poet, shatters the stereotype that poetry is written only by effete intellectuals who come out only after dark.

Indeed, I have edited war poetry from a Vietnam-era lieutenant colonel and hosted an Army reservist reading Iraq War poems.

Question: Was it the quirky juxtaposition of policeman and poet that caught Joe Downtown’s eye or the vital role that poetry may play in our lives? Also, you could have dumped a couple of Joe’s print paragraphs, and actually run a poem. After all, a poem is worth 1,000 words — wherein the poem becomes the man (in this case Fagel) and the man becomes the poem.

Finally, I enjoyed the story. So tell Fagel to keep his metaphors unholstered.

But, where possible, to use a simile, not a stick.

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