https://agnimag.wordpress.com/2016/05/3 ... -or-false/
an interesting essay. I have long had a problem with the way poetry is perceived as being autobiographical -- the way fiction writers have such leeway to make things up but poets are supposed to just write about things that are true and real.
I have long had a problem with this, too. But maybe a slightly different problem. Of course, not all poetry is autobiographical. I don't have any problem making things up. Everyone does (don't they?). Well, surely a lot of people do, including very famous poets.
My problem is with people who assume that what I write is autobiography. Sheesh, write about illness and all your poet friends start well-wishing and sending you treatment suggestions. Write about death and you get condolences. I can't emphasize enough (especially on The Waters) that we should never assume that the author and speaker are the same.
Exactly like fiction writers, we often construct a fiction, or move beyond the particulars of our own lived experience, in order to convey emotional truth.
But I long ago concluded that people must think I lead a very wild life.