Whatever doesn't kill you...makes you stranger --The Joker in The Dark Knight
Over the last twenty years, this country has experienced a population boom of poets, thanks mainly to the Slam Movement and the proliferation of graduate creative writing programs. There are about 300 colleges and universities in the U. S. offering MFAs in creative writing. If you figure they have each cranked out two dozen shiny new poets each year over the last two decades, you have upwards of one hundred forty thousand "professional" poets to work the counters of an awful lot of coffee houses. And that doesn't include all those folks who decided they could do without a couple years of listening to their peers congenially disembowel their poems, nor the thousands of gifted amateurs, dabblers, dilettantes, pikers, poseurs, and haiku geeks.