I wrote a poem titled Appreciation of Life. It’s about a serial killer cutting up a body and then throwing it in the ocean(such a romantic I am). This poem can be found in Darkness: Poems of Extreme Horror. I promise I do have a point and I’m not just pimping my book.
A few months before I published Darkness, I showed a friend some of the poems I planned to include. Appreciation of Life was the first one I showed her. She told me that I should not include this poem. That I had pushed things too far and it would probably upset people. She went on to say she hoped they will interview her for the serial killer documentary they make about me (We don’t talk much anymore).
So as a artist when have you gone too far? Is it possible to over push the boundaries? I myself think no subject is too sensitive or dangerous to cover. However, I do understand why some people stay away from controversial subjects. Whether its for a personal reason, or they just don’t want to piss people off. Lets face the facts that in today’s world the sensitivity level is high. People get offended by the simplest things.
Your target audience should be the deciding factor on what topics you tackle in your art form. For example, if you’re a filmmaker who makes christian movies. You probably don’t want to produce a movie about necrophilia butt sex (I mean that’s common sense).
I emailed one of my favorite authors named Edward Lee. In the email I of course gushed over how big a fan I was and how I loved his books. One of the questions I asked him was if he felt you could ever go too far with a subject matter. I am going to quote his exact answer.
“As for poetry pushing the boundaries, I think it’s dishonest to the reader to censor things, and as long as your work isn’t racist, terroristic, or involve children, I really don’t think there ARE any boundaries.”
What do you guys think? Is it possible to go to far? How far would you go? Are there subject matters you dare wouldn’t touch?