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Rex Cox


 

My name is Rex Cox, a Southern- long brown hair, blue eyes, close beard with lots of gray- often mistaken for either a redneck, or a hippie it seems- other than that, I'm from Kentucky. I was born working class, poor working class- that is. And over the years have become rather reclusive. But as regards to poetry, I have always had the urge to write down such things as I've written- though the original urge came from singers and musicians, and not poets. My father, who was from the Kentucky Knobs, and not the Kentucky Mountains- and there is a difference between the two- the mountains being a whole lot bigger ( that's a joke, but also true at the same time ),  played guitar at barn dances, little country stores, honky tonks...so at first I was exposed to country music. And at churches and camp meetings, and funerals that I was taken to- I was exposed to Gospel songs. And of course, rock music and country music on the radio and TV. By the time I was a teenager, while all the other kids were listening to only what was new. I listened to the original Hank Williams (1923-1953), the Beatles, Electric Light Orchestra, and the Moody Blues, and of course, Elvis- as well as other individual songs. But anyway, my main influences are as far as my poetry is concerned- and few are poets in the usual sense of the word, consists of Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe, the short stories of Nathaniel Hawthorne, O Henry, Hank Williams Sr., the Beatles, Bob Dylan in his lyrics when he went electric, the Electric Light Orchestra...and any number of individual songs, both rock and country, though more rock and pop, than country. Now I'm not a late bloomer in writing poetry, I've sent it off to magazines since my 20s, but there was either complete silence, rejection letters: some polite, some with insults, if not outright sneers- which just revealed to me, that the problem with modern poetry is that they lost the sense of song and music that is supposed to be in poetry going back to the ancient world, even if it is to be read or recited, and not sung- they understood.