[Cross-posted with Andrew]
Mark, you make some compelling arguments. However, even if a poet were to imagine Emily Dickinson signing a media release form in addition to consenting to the encounter itself, the problem of an intensely private person's consent remains. The poet's power to imagine away any objections she might make still removes Emily's free will from the equation.
I don't see how things would be any different if the person whose intimacy and privacy were being violated were Gerard Manley Hopkins.
On RPF Poems about Sex with Emily Dickinson
Writing from a rapist’s point of view
is challenging. To prove that you can do it,
you must be strong, and force the victim through it
while readers fail to empathize with you.
It’s better to insist the rendezvous
is not a rape. That’s easy—nothing to it.
Just claim the victim loves it. Or say, “Screw it,
it’s just a fantasy. It isn’t true.”
It’s just a harmless exercise in fiction.
In fighting censorship and slippery slopes.
In freedom of expression. In the art
of making art. In pushing envelopes.
In breaking every fetter and restriction
except the one that's hindering your heart.
RPF = Real person fantasy, a genre similar to fan fiction.
Title was "Celebrity Sex Poem"
L1 had "the rapist's"
L3 was "your fortitude must force the victim through it"
L14 was "except the one that's cutting off your heart"
Last edited by Julie Steiner; 05-05-2019 at 06:56 PM.
Reason: Tweaks; thanks to Susan for the fanfic observation