I’m trying to catch up with the discussion–I’ll put in my 2 cents on the pre-reading question first.
It seems to me that some poems, lyric poems especially, stand alone better than others. You don’t need a fat lot of philosophical/historical background to appreciate a Keats ode. But for Keats it does help to have some feeling for nature, which…[Read more]
We’ll be spending time this fall with one another’s words, so let’s add in some context 😉 Please take a moment to introduce yourself here.
Some questions to get you started: What are your pronouns? Do you go by a nickname? Where do you live? What do you do for a living? Do you write poetry? Prose? Neither? What brought you to the reading group?…[Read more]
@Bri, I really appreciate the two examples you gave because they’re so different in their approach, yet they both get at the objective correlative. Bukowski’s working to convey a singular experience, while Long Soldier is working through repetition to convey how other people’s ignorance often frames her experience.
These are excellent examples…[Read more]
Some thoughts on question 1 above:
This week I’ve been thinking a lot about this poem from Summer Anniversaries
To a Ten-Months’ Child
Late arrival, no
One would think of blaming you
For hesitating so.
Who, setting his hand to knock
At a door so strange as this one,
Might not draw back?
Certainly, once admitted,
You will be made to fee…[Read more]
To get the August reading discussion started, I’ve got two questions about Summer Anniversaries. (For folks who haven’t seen the reading schedule, it’s here.)
1. Donald Justice often writes in traditional forms, so reading his first book might feel a bit like an Easter egg hunt (or, if you’re already pretty familiar with formal poetry, the…[Read more]
I am of a similar mind as @Robyn. Poems which may have the widest range of access to readers often have the ability to “stand on their own…” Which is not to say I do not welcome mystery. But poems which have the texture of speaking to us from the page are of of different tenor that those drafted from a performance lens. In so much as…[Read more]
I like the idea of “harnessing the fractal color of language.” Bri, it sounds like you’re interested in biography for what it teaches you as a poet about being a poet. @robyn made a good point above about how each poem might call for varying levels of outside context, which has me thinking that perhaps it’s easier to talk about this abstract idea…[Read more]
If you’ve got questions about how the forum works, or you’re having trouble of any kind, please post your questions in this thread. You can also use the contact form on the site to message me directly. This forum is new, so I’m still getting used to it. Feedback on its usability is welcome!
Some things to keep in mind: You can tag members in the…[Read more]
At the risk of being noncommittal, harnessing the fractal color of language… while also allowing it sufficient room to breathe varies, I think. Some poets are more analytical, and their work structured… while others are more improvisational or free range in their voice. So in my mind, applying context is akin to employing garlic or rosemary…[Read more]
Morning everyone… looking fwd to sharing with you all. Thanks (again) for creating this window for us, Laura!
“A poet’s job is to find a name… to be a fearless finder of the names of things.” Jane Kenyon.
@areluctantprophet: Great to have you here! Welcome!
Hi, Robyn! I like the distinction you make between an everyday person and yourself as a poet. It’s good to hear you make that distinction even if you tend to want the same thing in both cases. And it makes sense: if we can’t understand a poem without reading something else first, all of the outside reading will slow down our enjoyment of the poem…[Read more]
I tend to feel poems should be able to stand on their own in order for the everyday person to be able to connect with the poem without having to know who the poet is, what time period, etc. However there are many poems it is good to have some context when the poem might be more subtle in regards to politics, religions, family dynamics, and…[Read more]
Claire, welcome! I’m so glad you’re here. Can’t wait to hear more about how your impressions of his work have changed over the years.
Men at 40 has added meaning for me this year, too 😉 Folks who are still waiting for the books can see the poem here: http://www.augustpoetry.org/passage/men_at_forty.htm
The poem seems, in many ways, so…[Read more]
An interesting question! I look forward to participating in this group… thanks for the opportunity! I have had a deep respect for Justice ever since I read his work back in my 20s. Now, since I’ve turned 40, his poem, Men at 40, keeps playing in my head. Even though I’m no longer a man. Maybe that makes the poem even a little more…[Read more]
We’re about to embark on an intensive, immersive study of a single author, including his biography and his teaching materials, which has me thinking about all the situations when we hear that a poem should stand alone. I’m thinking about workshops, readings, the act of close reading, and evaluations of the strength or merit of individual poems in…[Read more]
This group will run from August through November. At the end of each month we’ll gather (not in real-time, but over the course of a week or so) to talk about what we’ve read. The discussion board’s open to anyone who wants to start a new conversation, so no need to wait until the end of the month if you’ve got a burning question or…[Read more]