Bob Dylan has been nominated for the literature Nobel for years, but no one had seriously expected the Swedish Academy to honour him. Now that it has opened its gilt-trimmed doors wide to poetry intended to be sung, there are many more candidates waiting in the wings. Even if we exclude those chart-topping yet execrable lyricists who close off their lines with “ooh, yeh”, a red flag indicating that their vocabulary has failed their sense of rhyme, there are many.
The trailblazing poets of “English music”, as it is known in India — Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, John Lennon and Howlin’ Wolf, for instance — are no longer eligible, since the Academy peevishly declines to honour the dead. But there are many others, who can be nominated for the 2017 prizes (please hustle, the deadline is February 1): Read more