This may belong in Great Debates or maybe even the Pit, so if the mods choose to move it I won’t be surprised or disappointed.
I’m not asking about pop poets like Rod McKuen or some Ed Woods Jr. type of utterly untalented poseur whose verse was never taken seriously.
I’m asking about figures who are or have been considered major poets by the literati for at least thirty or forty years. I want the kind who routinely turn up in the pages of college lit courses, the sort that hardly anybody dares to question. I want you to name someone whose beatification among the literary greats utterly baffles and/or enrages you, and then tell us exactly why this cheap little hack ought to be run out of town on a rail together with anybody who ever praised him. I want someone you consider so bad that it’s a marvel he’s even remembered, let alone revered. Tell me about the major poet whose verse makes your skin crawl. Tell me about the versifier who makes you wonder if bookburning just might be a good idea. Tell me about the dead white guy who made you want to leap up in the middle of your English lit class and beat your professor stoutly about the head and shoulders with your textbook. It it Whitman? Is it Yeats? Eliot? Cummings? Ginsberg? I’m only an occasional reader of poetry myself, so I don’t feel I know enough about it to offer a reasonably informed opinion. (I do happen to consider Allen Ginsberg vastly overrated, but he probably doesn’t qualify as the worst of all time and space.)
So come on. Drag that miserable little phony out to the public square and pillory the jerk so we can all throw rotten tomatoes at him.