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In accordance with many differing authors modern post-theological poets in an arena where God is supposedly dead or running things inadequately have many assorted roles In her essay Keats and the Use of Poetry Helen Vendler shows that poets may write to display historical themes to use representation an incarnation of the passions to teach others virtues or simply to maintain the beauty of verse Vendler 117 However poets are not firmly held to these styles about which she speaks rather postmodern poets themselves are disoriented looking for their place in a society where they are not popular and in many peoples eyes not wanted Yet although poets do not firmly cling to the loose conditions of Vendler they can still be abstractly applied to modern poets like John Ashbery Poets are no longer held to the ideological restrictions that were prevalent in prior times but the new freedom is more of a restriction than the limitations created by the acceptance and popularity of God John Ashbery represents this postmodern example of the poet his thoughts at times seem scattered amongst his characters interactions and comments which itself is a representation of the perplexing notion of the present day poet Through everything Vendler states Ashbery seemingly exhibits opposing functionshe does not write about history nor passions nor virtues and as evident by his often disjointed verse not even to retain as Vendler quotes the dying tones of minstrelsy Vendler 117 Ashbery may be lost but he is by no means less of a poet he still utilizes the representative aspect of poetry that been so essential to antiquated poetic style as seen in Spring Cries However Ashbery also does not instill many of the conditions set forth by Vendler and the thematic content of his poetry has shifted dramatically from the former ideas Ashbery by not only using the qualities of postmodern poets as outlined by Helen Vendler but by also not infusing
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