How the Viet Nam war changed political poetry

When I was starting out, we were pretty careful to not write political poems. But that might be a Gen X thing, more than a poetry thing. Here, what changed the poet soldiers of that generation are examined.

Clearly, the combination of loneliness and sense of betrayal that so many of these poets experienced was a central component of their work. As Ehrhart described, “each soldier went to Vietnam alone and unheralded, and those who survived came home alone to an alien land—indifferent or even hostile to them—where the war continued to rage no farther away than the nearest television set or newspaper, or the nearest street demonstration.”

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