by Andrew Osborne
Boy, people sure do love to hate Amanda Palmer. Even more than they hate Lana Del Rey (though not quite as much as they hate Madonna). First, there was the whole Kickstarter controversy, and now there’s “A Poem for Dzhokar” (which Gawker incorrectly labeled the Worst Poem of All Time…a clear misprint, since it’s been scientifically proven that John Cusack’s ode to Obama on the eve of his first inauguration was, in fact, the worst poem ever.
I mean, I get why Amanda’s hateable, I suppose. She’s a brash attention whore who seems to delight in rubbing people the wrong way. Yet whether you think she’s a bad person and/or makes bad music — which I don’t and don’t (in fact, quite the opposite) — the furor over the poem seems overblown. Sure, nerves are raw in Boston, and people are always looking for stuff to get all het up about in general, especially when it comes to traumas and tragedies.
But, I dunno…I think she was just speculating about the dude in an artsy way, like artists do. I mean, countless people (myself included) reacted to the whole Marathon situation in different ways and will continue to do so, from Stewart/Colbert/Maher monologues to essays to other forms of expression. (And it’s not like she pulled some Madonna type move like wearing a “Free Dzhokar” t-shirt in concert or that kind of nonsense.)
People who hate Amanda Palmer are always looking for reasons to hate her even more — and writing poems is an easily mockable pursuit — but it’s not like she’s championing the surviving Boston terrorist. As for the inherent artistry of the poem itself, I’m not really qualified to judge…I just know it’s better than what John Cusack wrote. I mean, seriously…that shit was whack.