Thursday, February 08, 2007

Playing with Poetry

here is a great poem that addresses how to approach poetry and read a poem

Introduction to Poetry

By: Billy Collins

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide

or press an ear against its hive.

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,

or walk inside the poem's room
and feel the walls for a light switch.

I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author's name on the shore.

But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it.

They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.

(from The Apple that Astonished Paris, 1996University of Arkansas Press, Fayetteville, Ark.)



Blogger Liz said...

I like this way of reading poetry better than J. Evans Pritchard from DPS :)

1:07 PM  
Blogger Caleb said...


I don't think I ever "get" poetry and I not sure why I ever got the idea (that I had to get it) in my head in the first place.

Poetry should just be. Like any other painting or sculpture type thing.

Thanks for sharing.

and mean I should not graph my peoms to figure out if they are good or not? My world is shaken.

3:06 PM  
Blogger laura said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10:30 AM  
Blogger laura said...

thanks again for the feedback.
liz, i can't remember this moment in the movie, so i looked it up on the net and found this:
"Keating begins another lecture by having the students rip out an introduction by J. Evans Pritchard because he thinks it is an excrement. He says, "We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race, and the human race is filled with passion." You can't measure the greatness of poetry by measuring its importance and its perfection in rhyme and meter."
so, with that and caleb's comment in mind, i think i get it.

10:31 AM  

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