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If I Tell You This Is Mostly About Poetry, Will You Still Read It? A Social Experiment.

I’m grateful that I was born a writer. I can’t imagine being born any other way. Maybe a painter, but that seems rather hard. My tools are very simple- pen and paper- and I only must need (I like must need. It sounds very Appalachian English to me, and it makes sense as both words feel equally right, and I don’t want to choose) move with the quickness of my mind. I am not Monet chasing the light. Here I want to insert another example about wildlife photographers chasing their subject, maybe someone from National Geographic, but I have no names, and I feel like that’s a shame, and I feel like there’s just never enough time to learn all the things we want to learn. Not if we want to do other things too. Do you feel that way?

Lord Alfred Tennyson described time and life:

Be near me when the sensuous frame
Is rack’d with pangs that conquer trust;
And Time, a maniac scattering dust,
And Life, a Fury slinging flame.

How’s that for poetry? It’s an excerpt from this section of In Memoriam Section L [“Be near me when my light is low”]   Speaking of poetry, I’d like to recommend another poem to you. (I don’t do that nearly enough. I’ve only done it twice, actually- years ago, here and here is one of mine). This poem brings together one of my favorite poets, Billy Collins, and history, since we’re talking about time. The poem is called “Aristotle” read by Collins himself.

Is this poem not incredibly beautiful? Does the imagery not captivate you? Do the feelings not register as true? I’d like to take this poem out to dinner and get frisky in the parking lot. I think we’d really hit it off.

I like Collins’ reading. I don’t always like writers reading their own work. Sometimes I think they ruin it. Sometimes it’s disconcerting. Yesterday, though, I heard T.S. Eliot read his famous poem “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” and it was lovely the way he took his time with the reading.

I miss reading to my students, so if you don’t mind, I’ll read to you now “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”.

https://www.spreaker.com/user/10055454/the-love-song-of-j-alfred-prufrock

I’ve been working all day on mainly research, and research doesn’t always feel like accomplishment. Research, to me, feels like an extravagance and that makes me feel guilty and wasteful of the time that I’m given in my day. Are there any other writers out there who get the same feeling? The issue is that I love research. And those of you who also love it know that it can always lead to more research, but I love learning, damn it; therefore, I’ve always got this tug of am I being productive or indulgent. The other issue is that I firmly believe that most things I learn or discover will come up to help me later on. Still, research makes me feel unproductive sometimes. Also, research is one of my happy tools of procrastination.

Thanks for coming along with me on this literary gab fest. Do you like poetry? Did you like any of the ones mentioned in this post? As always, I’d love to hear from you.


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My name is Lyz-Stephanie and I want to inspire you to be more connected to yourself and the world, to find beauty in simple pleasures, and to have more adventures. Every day we can do something to make our lives happier and richer, make our minds more active and engaged. I’m on the journey. Will you join me?

 

6 thoughts on “If I Tell You This Is Mostly About Poetry, Will You Still Read It? A Social Experiment.

    1. So glad to hear it! I love Billy Collins because his writing is so straight-forward and seemingly simple and then there are others that are really stylized and I love them too. There’s so much range and something for everyone. Unfortunately, must people grow to hate it in high school. I’d like to do a little to change that. I love the sound of beautiful language!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I couldn’t love this post more!!!! The Billy Collins reading is incredible; I am diving into him this weekend and I can’t wait! I get stuck on the sound and feel of certain lines or phrases in a poem, “this is the sticky part” and “the river losing its name in and ocean” – so damn good! You read Elliot like only a poet can. I knew a poet years ago, a brilliant woman named Laurel Ann Bogan, who told me T.S. Elliot saved her life. I really enjoyed going back and reading your older posts. I am a fan of you and your poetry and all of your writing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You know something, I don’t know your name and I’d really like to. Is that okay? What you say about getting stuck on certain lines or phrases just hit me because it’s something I love so much- the way certain ones just step out somehow from the others and keep swirling around in our minds. Actually “the river losing it’s name” was one for me too. “…your first night with her, first night without her” “disappointment unshoulders his knapsack here” “too much to name, too much to think about”… I could go on and on. This poem is captivating.

      Thanks about the reading. I’ve always loved reading aloud, and thankfully my students liked it too. Sometimes too much! The sound of words, of literature, the music of it, is so special. Wouldn’t it be great if T.S. Eliot knew the impact he made on your friend! The beauty of writing.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My name is Susan. I am thrilled to be able to read about, write about and talk about poetry with you. Poetry is where I go to first, as a writer; it feeds who I am and where I need to be at any given time. I have lines from poems by brilliant poets that will be in my thoughts forever and make me strive to be a better writer. One of the first for me (a long time ago and in a very angsty time) is from “Mad Girls Love Song” by Sylvia Plath: “I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead” – it haunts me to this day. I have been working solely on my poetry today and you have inspired me to delve even more throughly into it. We are so lucky to be writers!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Well hello Susan ☺ I’ve been running around like a headless chicken since yesterday, hence the delayed response. That Sylvia Plath quote is… I don’t know which words to use. It’s perfect. I don’t think I’ll ever forget it.

          Liked by 1 person

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