Well, there is a great book coping with
that thought-provoking issue of Implied Author and Empirical Author. It's made
up of six lectures held at Harvard University in
The title is: "Six Walks in the
Fictional Woods", by Umberto Eco.
It deals mainly with prose fiction, but the
issues Eco tries to deal with are valid for poetry as well. He is a professor of
Semiotics, anyway -- so he mainly talks about the processes involved, exploiting
a huge amount of examples from prose fiction.