A poem bears information whether as a meaning-making entity or as pure experience. When we revise a poem we are often tempted to cut things (eliminate information) after our first reading of the poem which seem to be extraneous or superfluous in retrospect. And yet we can never wipe the mind’s slate clean and experience the poem the way we did in our first reading of it. Certain things may be cut from the poem which will always inform our reading of that poem. These elements remain in the mind even after being deleted from the text. But how will the next ‘first-time reader’ of the poem experience it without these elements? That is the nagging question faced during revision.

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