Fast Poem 36: A Fetish of Troll

Just because I like you

does not mean

I like the opinions you spout.

That I like

what you say to me

does not guarantee I like you

anymore than being me guarantees

I like me.

And always,

please,

keep in mind,

that just because I

consider you full of it,

a crazy, crackpot,

conspiracy theory, laughable misfit

missing every point

in every pointless way,

does not mean I do not like you;

that I would not jump at the chance

to buy you a beer

or share the darkness

of damp exotic nights with you.

Think on and imagine,

whoever you are

cool anonymous fiend.

Blow my mind

sky high.

Parody me to smile.

Satire me to giggle,

and at the end

of adolescent diatribes

let us,

you and I,

at least try

a slice of like.

On Blow

Students[1] and student’s authority figure discuss Kerouac’s “Essentials of Spontaneous Prose” – wonder, they do, what does the man mean writing blow for writing, outblown in writing, blow deep to write – ? – consider, they do, jazzman breathes into mouthpiece blow means breath maybe what is breath to writing to spontaneous writing what -?- Dunno – change subject. Wait. Before we leave the subject, what does this mean? Mean? It means you can’t do it wrong.

Blow boys and girls is more than breath but breath yes but more.

Blow is where breath meets soul, afterhours backroom chit chat yakkity yak – walking talking personal history, progressions, secrets, deep, fatal honesty – blow life, blow death, blow the next score – blow the state of things – home state, on the road state, my state, your state, state of the union, state of affairs – blow yer trysts, yer breaks, yer fixes. Unthought calculation, gyrating, vagabond path tuning head to tail – syncopation spilling, rhythm chilling, harmonic thrilling – blow breath mind blow Soul – intentional, exploratory – blow man blow progressive gaps, high register changes – blow vibrating particulate air into Copenhagenian waves pulsing past predictable Zeitgeistian horizons wetting sands of cosmological surf bum shores – not so far from here to there to not be heard but far enough to baffle swingspectation, dancespectation – Blow Intellectual toe tap, head nod – sound wise exorcism expelling The Blues – amaranthine ancient InsectInvisible infernal imps wall siting, crevice creeping, chronic, ubiquitous, lingering approximately beyond peripheral vision, perpetually waiting to twist hands just wrong, sour songs, turn words mind-inverse making a mess of everything – for a breathless while. Blow blows mind, fingers, lips – ears – syncopation – pitch – pace – alliteration. Blow meets soul afterhours backroom.

Per Jack spontaneous prose harmonizes with Blow. Poet’s blow. Writer’s blow. Ain’t easy Blow – she said it means you cannot do it wrong – flinched but deep down knowing her blowing not wrong resembles right. Can’t blow wrong boys and girls but it’s hard to blow write. Spontaneous blows from center out or down or away – rapid association, not random, unrelated, lacking syntax – out and back. Resolution in association – head, theme, home, start and go, go out, phrase tied to phrase tied to phrase streaming, steaming, hypertext screaming, allusion, allegory, alliteration, assonance, audilic metaphor, magicimagae metaphor, conceited step-sister metaphor speed yap out and away Further – round third and take a taxi home, collect mail – feed cats – then out once more into the twisting cosmos – webweaving Theseusian threads, gossamer rainbows, one pixel pixies dancing relations – every man and woman is a star – Repeat. Spontaneous, honest blow -Intellect meet Soul: they dance – embrace – get naked in the coat room – not wrong but never right except feels write – not wrong works – not works wrong – mutual orgasm alone – with keyboard.

Blow deep below the superficial small talk everyday hypocrisy. Blow deep beneath illusion, delusion – socially programmed games – IMeMy games. Blow deep – shadow place. Honesty chair-tied, half-naked beneath naked bulb – honestly patient hostage – Self-deception and Reptile Mind watch from safe behind one-way mirrors. Blow there corners blue shadow edges. Blow deep beneath Mind’s I. Blow yer Blues ingenuous – synthesize the bastards lying to you, you yourself lying to you undim calignosic secrets all your relations relating it all back again – theme – center – unchill inquiet audience/reader – tension of too far wandering troubling subconscious desire: release. Stray deep Blow deep – undadarandom, unonger mane, walkabout unlost resolving to tonic, harmonic of tonic, prismatic bending of tonic, gin and tonic. Martini?

Breath and Soul melded, named blow – Thesuessian all-color thread draped star strung man to woman to woman to man to infinite connections there is no difference. Buddha in Dog. Dog in Buddha. Dharma Bums acme bent octave escalation – plummet possible but you cannot fall off a mountain. Bring it back – bring it home – center, a center, some center, any center before the 32nd bar.


  1. This is another set of notes made in response to the ModPo class at coursea.org.  ↩

Fast Poem 35: It Doesn’t Make Sense

“It just doesn’t make sense!”

Ah, but it does make sense.

It always makes sense.

It makes more sense than one.

We may not have access to the sense it makes.

We may refuse verity of the sense it makes.

We may sense the sense it makes

but choose

no pursuit 

of the sense we sense,

embracing for the moment no sense 

which, makes no sense

when later we sense

we need to squeeze out some sense                      

to sense some peace of mind,

to get some sense of closure,

to move on.

Sometimes lack of data makes impossible making sense.

Sometimes we lack capacity 

to ingest and condense complexity,

to sculpt cosmic chaos into information

etched with sense of sense.

Sometimes sense fills us: hate,

anger,

tragedy,

threat,

mortality,

letting no excess length width or depth to fit sense.

Sometimes sanity requires denying sense;

“It does not make sense.”

“God works in mysterious ways.”

“It is Satan’s work.”

so we can breath again.

There is no difference between denys

except in words.

Each finite,

valid until

sense illuminates the manuscript

or The End unmatters the matter.

Before,

after, 

neither trigger-event nor sense of event dissipates, bends, or mutates.

Beneath it all it makes the sense it makes.

It always makes sense.

It makes more sense than one,

but sometimes it feels better to cry,

to just to cry,

and that’s okay.

It makes sense

sometimes to cry 

just cry.

It makes sense.

It makes more sense than one.


Via an alter-ego I participate in online course offered by Coursea.org. The course, ModPo (Modern Poetry) is taught/led/guided/coached/illuminated by Al Filreis, Kelly Professor of English, University of Pennsylvania. This was my first encounter with his work. 

I experienced a spiritual weirdness watching the video introducing the course. Ten seconds in I felt that if I should see Al Filreis on the street I would approach, thank him, grab him by the shoulders and rub my beard against his beard, give him a high-five, thank him again, grab his hands and force him to dance an ad-hoc polka and finally grab his right-hand with both of mine and shake his arm off. His enthusiasm for poetry made me feel like I’d found my way home after years of wandering the wilderness, keeping the sun always at my back.

Yet, I disagree with at least 1/2 of what is said and taught in the class – disagree is probably too strong a word – let me say I have ideas below, beyond, sideways, or even above what is said and taught in the class – a condition I find inspiring, illuminating and wonderful.

The poem “It Doesn’t Make Sense” was written in response to a ModPo forum thread. During discussion of Gertrude Stein’s Let Us Describe someone said “Sometimes things don’t make sense.” This led to a quick discussion of “Life not always making sense.” linked to the language experiments of Stein and other Modernist poets. On the forums, for better or worse, my alter ego questioned what sense life does not make. In response, another ModPo participant offered a link to Joan Didion’s essay “White Album.” , generously suggesting it might help my alter-ego grok how life sometimes does not make sense. Several pages of the essay can be read here. I think pages 11 to 14 are those intended. To me, the essay validated the question “What sense does life not make?”, which means my alter-ego did a crappy job explaining himself. I wrote the poem so he maybe, might, sorta find a way to better articulate his resistance to the idea that life sometimes does not make sense.

Fast Poem 34: On Interpretation

What criteria do you use to determine right interpretation from wrong?

Who wrote the criteria down. Did they contemplate for long

before reaching consensus? Do they intend one day to tell us; 

down here in the trenches, we the lowly masses, 

how to think so that we comply? 

What rules we must apply

to determine should we deny 

or accept an interpretation 

as worthy of consideration –

wrong or right,

day or night,

black or white?

And if we find between lines a song

unwritten laws deem can not belong

do we bag and set it curbside

or self-thinking decide

which voice stands out –

the wrong, embryonic shout

or the mature murmur of right

safe but rutstuck tight.

-Note on the Poem-

An alter-ego is taking a class at coursea.org named Fantasy and Science Fiction: Our Modern World, The Human Mind. The professor delivered a video lecture proffering interpretations can be wrong. On a discussion forum, my alter-ego disagreed with the professor’s position. Another student disagreed with him and sided with the professor. The dialogue progressed a step or two before my alter-ego, better late than never, asked me for input. I offered this.

Fast Poem 32: Frustration

Times like this.

A line floats beyond grasp;

at tongue’s tip but too far from lips

or pen to save.

It scurries to shadows,

like diseased vermin;

hides behind inconvenient walls,

close but out of reach,

mewing and chirping;

reminding that no other line,

should another bother to come to mind

today,

tomorrow

or another day

will do so well,

be so good, 

as the one that got away.

Perhaps I should retreat to rhyming poetry,

hide my mediocracy

behind dusty, classic forms.

Heroic couplet?

Dadum dadum dadum dadum da-ay

Tado tado tado tado ta-ay.

Dadoo dadoo dadoo dadoo da-be

Tada tada tada tada ta-be.

Weary sounds.

Worn boots stomping concrete streets;

marching behind Nostalgia’s baton;

parading to remember hell as glorious;

to summon sense of life whetted clear by fear of death;

to recover for a moment black elation faded

by years of day in, day out , banal comforts;

blurred by responsibility mundane as Monday.

No other line that comes to mind today,

tomorrow

or another day

will do so well as the line mewing

and taunting in the shadows,

as the one that got away.

Fast Poem 30: I Love Work

I am best when I have work to do.

Work is my drug of choice.

Work obliterates the

painful reality of neo-tyranny.

Work dulls the unbroken monotony

of soul choking bureaucracy infected society.

I get high knowing someone needs me

to get things done ASAP

and when I rise

I need not decide

how to fill my day.

Work is my drug of choice.

I am best when I have work to do.

How to Read Poetry – The Role of Reader

Note – Before we begin, though I feel I should not have to remind I do remind that all written can be prefaced with IMO and absolutes can be modified to “some but not all.”
“One only reads well that which one reads with some quite personal purpose.”
Paul Valéry
“The interests of a writer and the interests of his readers are never the same …”
To read is to translate, for no two persons’ experiences are the same. A bad reader is a bad translator: he interprets literally when he out to paraphrase and paraphrases when he out to interpret literally.”
“One sign that a book has literary value is that it can be read in a number of different ways”
“ … the proof that pornography has no literary value is that, if one attempts to read it in any other way than as sexual stimulus … one is bored to tears …”
W. H. Auden
——- ——- ——–
Lesson plans encourage students to approach poetry like observers; to examine the poem as object of art; to pick the literary lock, solve the puzzle of prosody and unravel the Gordian Knot of the poet’s mind. Students panic as questions without answer or with too many answers swoop through the classroom like untethered harpies. Who is the speaker? Why does the speaker think foo? Why did the poet use the word “rebar” instead of zebar?
In the English classroom, students are asked to do to poetry with dull-edged dialectics what they do in the Biology classroom to frogs with stainless steel scalpels.
We are taught to analyze poetry in the classroom. We look at poems from this angle and that, slice pieces from branches and investigate them under the microscope of question and response. We look closely at the leaves but miss the forest. We pile our desks with parts that equal less than the whole.
At some point in their career as readers, good readers learn to recognize subtle significance in parts, in elements of Poetic Art used by the poet to create an incantation that invokes from ink and wood pulp a small aspect of Universe. Good readers do this at an intermediate or advanced phase of development, when they must do so to continue to grow, not at the beginning. Starting at analysis puts us in the role of observer, outside the poem, looking in for signs of life.
——- ——- ——–
We live in a culture of Scientific Thought and Scientific Style dominates our writing and our approach to reading.
Scientific thought permeates the reality of our culture and influences most modern usage; a usage that I label, for convenience only, Scientific Style. Scientific Style so dominates our culture that those who most strongly oppose the materialism of Science: Fundamentalist Creationists, apply Scientific Style to their Holy Texts; they read the texts literally, the way we read Scientific reports, rather than, as all Holy Texts must be read, as poetry.
For Scientific Style, writers focus on clarity and single meaning. They choose words carefully to avoid ambiguity. Documents contain explicit simile and analogy to help readers grasp complex concepts but not true metaphor. Readers of the documents don analysts’ hats. If the writer achieves success, linear logic eliminates all interpretations except those reflecting the intent of the writer. Reading a document in the Scientific Style, we invite the writer to program concepts into our consciousness; we adopt a role of observer, a fan in the stands, doing our best to see a vision defined by the author.
Scientific Style makes our world work. Technology and Science writing, from physics journals to cookbooks, requires readers to understand the intent of the writer. If the intent of the writer gets lost in translation, research fails to inspire invention; invention remains too complicated for production and product cannot be used by consumers.
The natural role of the reader in Scientific Style is observer. When lesson plans encourage students to approach poetry with the same, analytical mind as they use when reading Scientific Style writing, the lesson plan imprints in the student a sense that poetry, like all the reading the student has encountered to that point, has meaning, reflects the author’s intent, contains linear logic and strives for clarity; lesson plans encourage objective observation of poetry in a manner similar to that required by Scientific Style.
——- ——- ——–
Poetry is antithetic to Scientific Style. When reading poetry, the role of the reader must be other than observer; for poetry, the reader becomes a participant; the reader of poetry becomes an artist.
When we enter the world of poetry we encounter language used differently from contemporary norm. Most modern discourse and writing strives to transfer an idea as clearly and fully as possible from one person to another. Poetry must exasperate a person looking for this kind of transfer. Where modern language values monolithic meaning, poetry exudes ambiguity. Where modern language tells people what to think, poetry provides links to form thought. Very different.
Readers who read poetry through the glass of Scientific Style meet frustration and confusion. Why didn’t the writer just say what she meant? Trying to dig meaning and writer’s intent from Poetic Writing leads to questions without answers and answers without relevance. What did the poet intend? What does the poem mean? These questions have only one valid answer: To read the poem back in a voice that reflects, to the best of our ability, what we hear in our mind and feel in our soul when we perform the poem for ourselves.
——- ——- ——–
Poetic Reading requires not analysis but synthesis; a synthesis of histories: the history the writer encased in poetics and the personal history of the reader. From the two histories, readers synthesize new, unique works: personal interpretations.
Interpretation here does not refer to an interpretation of meaning or interpretation of artist’s intent but interpretation of the poem as composition.
Reading poetry, we become artists, we adopt a role as creator. As readers we finish what poets begin.
Without readers poems remain incomplete.
Changing role from observer to participant, from trying to unravel writers’ intents to creating a personal work of art, frees readers to enjoy poetry in a new way, a sacred way.
Does the role of participant and co-creator give free rein to apply any meaning, any interpretation to any poem? Yes, but not equally. Poets insert keys to help readers relate to the poetry they write. Readers interpret by relating perception and memory; the readers’ personal histories, to the poetry they read. Novices notoriously miss many, if not all, the keys. Like kindergartners with one paint tube and no brushes, the novices create interpretations that are, though unique creations, easy to anticipate, vague, and untrue to form. Some novices lack necessary vocabulary and have yet to develop the ability to hear rhythm. They create mundane pictures. Others, euphoric to be freed from the constraints of the Scientific Style, soar over the abyss and create wild, woolly, often abstract and nonsense interpretations.
Few will be great translations of poetry.
None are wrong interpretations.
Play and experimentation come before prosody as new readers of poetry expand their poetic palettes. To shift from painting to music, new readers of poetry need the freedom to experiment, to dabble in poetry selected because they simply like the way it sounds. Just as beginning piano players find fun, if simplistic, rhythms and chord structure if allowed to plunk about, beginning poetry readers can find potential insights and simple interpretations by reading without theory.
——- ——- ——–
Some people find the implant of Scientific Style too strong to escape; find the author too important to the writing. To get beyond the Scientific Style, consider the difference between material and sacred. Both deserve a sense of wonder and awe. Scientific Style describes the material, making sense of the wonder. Poetic Style invokes the sacred, sharing rather than explaining. Good poets capture sense of The Sacred in poetry. Writers of Scientific Style describe the material Universe.
For artists, the sacred exists everywhere. In art, artists share The Sacred they find buried in details, soaring above landscapes, caught in moments, unraveled through eons, exposed by the outline of thigh behind clinging fabric, endless in the eternal migration of geese, drifting in a mist over a lake surrounded by pines, persistent in the perseverance of the Holy See. Having caught a glimpse of the Sacred, the Artist attempts to glorify it in works of beauty. For the works of beauty they need to create, Poets compose poetry.
Readers of poetry adopt the role of ritualists; conductors of rites that invoke wonder and awe. With voices tuned to glorify the sacred; to unleash the genii from bounds of verse, readers find interpretation, meaningful but more felt than understood.
Reading poetry takes effort, playful and experimental and requires us to synthesize rather than analyze. We create new from the poem in the same way piano players create something new from the work of composers.
And like the piano players, readers get better with practice.
© 2009 Chrome Poet

How to Read Poetry – What’s in it For Me?

Why read poetry at all? Why bother to become better?
Most who read poetry read to experience joy, the beauty of language jitterbugging through time; the satisfaction of turning the key that unlocks the door to a room filled with wonder; the apotheosis of participation in sacred rites created by writers; the sudden, sacrosanct, orgasmic rush illuminating secret paths between conscious and subconscious thought.
Poetry constructs states of ecstasy and satisfaction accessible to memory and available for replay.
To which some Americans must wonder “But really, what’s in it for me?”
Fair enough.
Learning to read poetry generates material world rewards as side-effects to the intellectual and emotional joy invoked by coming upon and embracing poems capable of igniting our unique, primordial, intellectual, and emotional responses.
Those who read poetry live more romantic lives and enjoy better sex. Translated to guy-talk, those who read poetry have more sex and enjoy better romance. This should go without saying, but now it’s been said and it should be reason enough for anyone to start reading poetry. Think it through.
Reading poetry infuses us with the capacity to read between the lines and better distill information from content.
Reading poetry improves decision-making.
Reading poetry makes us more marketable. Think higher salary and better title.
Reading poetry expands the size of our world.
Reading poetry improves our sense of self.
Reading poetry leads to a better understanding of the sacred.
Reading poetry leads to direct experiences of joy.
This list was created to demonstrate that poetry has immediate, real-world benefits. Poetic language plays no role in day-to-day business communication but knowledge of poetics improves comprehension and competence. Through poetry we learn to better understand, anticipate and explain the workings of business and society; all to our advantage. The list does not include every benefit of poetry. For each person who embraces poetry, the reward for the effort varies but all can benefit.
Note – I use a very broad definition of poetry when I write of the returns for the effort. This definition includes reading and listening to poetry, stories and music; watching drama on stage, street and screen; contemplating photographs, paintings and drawings. Because some newscasters make intense use of rhetoric to couch their deceptions and since rhetoric belongs to the tool-box of poetics, learning to objectively listen to the lapdog political pundits that permeate news media counts as poetry … in a way … but only if we learn to parse the slight-of-hand.
© 2009 Chrome Poet

1.How to read Poetry – Of Poets We Have Enough

Of Poets we have enough. More to the point, of people who attempt to write poetry, our society overflows. Readers we lack; those who read poetry well appear too seldom in our society.

Against all odds, poetry got cool to do. Current interest in poetry does not attain overwhelming popularity like that generated for national talent shows and reality TV. But it flourishes, if not on Main Street then just off the main drag and around the corner. With the popularity of open-mic and slams, writing and reciting poetry has found a new home in a subculture not far from the suburbs.

That the surge of poets occurred without equal growth in readers should not surprise. Publishers publish books to help naïve writers write poetry. Education presents poetry in a manner that few survive and of the survivors, nearly all survive by writing, not by reading, poetry. Open mike nights and poetry slams encourage poets to read poetry: poetry they’ve written; not the same as learning to read other poet’s poetry. Many poets seem only to read poetry they have written. We might have more active poets than active readers of poetry.

Poets are coming out of the woodwork but readers of poetry are not. Judging from comments readers make, the few who read poetry, read poetry poorly.

Of the little time educators dedicate to poetry, few if any lessons explore interpreting and reading poetry; rarely does a student encounter an appealing relationship between reader and verse. Poets, even dead poets, retain iron-clad control over readers. The partnership between poet and reader remains unexplored. Poetry becomes a puzzle or embarrassing maze readers need to navigate. Educators may disagree with this perception. I doubt students have any doubt that it is true.

The pedagogy of poetry misleads students to the role of reader while discouraging all but the most talented from embracing poetry, ever, under any circumstances. The few, brightest, who manage to salvage love of language from the disaster of poetry classes must learn how to read poetry on their own. Like the victims of abstinence-only sex-education, they must unlearn much before learning little. Unlike the victims of abstinence-only sex-education, poetry readers learn alone; they read without partners; modern media provides no support; society disregards poetry as having no utility, as an aesthetic, as an art of no genuine value. Developing skills in a vacuum, have no doubt, poetry reading is a skill, challenges the best; yet most who find reading poetry essential to quality of life cultivate the art of reading solo, without gurus, road-signs or how-to books.

Reading poetry produces dangerous citizens; seeking and interpreting great poetry expands the mind beyond the restricting implants of those who protect status quo.

Knowing how to read poetry adds considerable value to the reader’s life, especially in our Age of Disinformation. A good reader sifts grain from chaff, recognizes the misleading, finds intent between lines and forms a unique interpretation in contrast to the masses who accept perceptions from self-appointed pundits. Embracing poetry as reader, an individual may escape the bear-traps of propaganda, sensationalism and misguidance of media generated Zeitgeist.

Schools teach students to read as if all words emerge from technical documents. Readers are asked to identify meaning; to second guess the author; to explore the mind of the speaker. In technical reading, this approach works because to succeed, technical writers and their readers require a transfer of idea from the mind of the writer to the mind of the reader; a transfer as complete and unchanged as possible. When a technical writer states “ … the foo is bar …” the verb form to be acts as an ‘=’; the writer informs the reader that foo and bar are interchangeable. The meaning intended by the technical writer is essential to the utility of the document.

Reading poetry is very much like playing the piano and not at all like reading a user guide.

Reading poetry requires a very different approach; interpretation in contrast to understanding the writer’s (or speaker’s) intention or meaning; more akin to appreciating painting, dancing or playing music than to reading a white paper. Piano players interpret music. Some piano players display more skill with the tool than others. Some display more talent for interpretation than others. Some do both. None do so without training and practice.

Reading poetry requires us to interpret the poetry which does not mean we try to discover the meaning. We no more need to grasp the meaning of poetry as we read than we need to discover the meaning of Satin Doll when playing from a fake book.

Until educators teach poetry as an act of interpretation rather than an exercise of understanding; as the creation of two artists: the poet and the reader, our society will lack poetry. It is not enough to have poets without readers any more than it is enough to have composers without musicians.

Note:
At this time, I do not read poetry well. The talent co-exists with great laziness. In the absence of external encouragement, I stopped development at a point just above average. Given the level of the bar, this does not deserve applause. Study of my very visible short-comings, in the context of reading poetry, and desire to improve inspire this personal examination of the reading process and a mode of thought that seems to improve enjoyment of poetry for me. I hope it will do the same for you.

This is only the beginning, I hope it has peaked interest.

© 2009 Chrome Poet

How to Read Poetry – Beginning Thoughts

I hit a writing wall. Not a physical wall. Not writer’s block. A wall of distraction.

Coffee in hand, I lay my pen against journal pages to create quick, small bits of poetry and watch, disappointed as my pen slips from the truth of poetry into paragraphic opinion and personal dogma. In my manner, I stroke three quick lines to indicate end of that thought and begin again. Pen flows lovely for a second before twisting away into prosaic statements of whine and rant; words tainted by the I of Me. I slam into a wall of I need to write this mundane thing before I can write what I want.

In poetry, bits of poet stick to phrases but most, if not all, great poets do not dwell on themselves except as vehicles for metaphor and analogy. The poem resounds with the poet’s voice but the speaker and poet are not one. Universe and life provide the themes for great poetry.

In prose, I write not of poetic prose, the great fiction and rare non-fiction works soaring on wings of metaphor and analogy but of ubiquitous, scientific-style prose that attempts no more than to transfer a set of idea from writer to reader; in prose the writer not only speaks but speaks to put in the reader’s mind part of the writer’s mind.

Poetry attempts truth in invocation; prose in evocation; poetry by providing catalyst for inspiration; prose by description of insight.

My insight I trust but lack confidence of my prose to describe that insight accurately; to paint it completely enough to resonate. I much prefer writing poetry but suffer a need to write prose. I must eliminate the distraction of opinion that soils my verse. I need to write blah, blah, prose.

I do not look forward to this exercise. My prose I find wanting – inauthentic – soapboxish.

The above should provide fair warning. In the next few days I shall attempt to document and publish my views on How to Read Poetry. Opinions on other current events may leak into the mix but the primary focus, at the moment, seems to be How to Read Poetry.

To date, I’ve done little more than collect a few research notes on the topic. My way of saying I’ll be making this up as I go along.

I will not be attempting essay form. I love to read well formed essay and would like to provide same but have never acquired the skill. Instead, taking a cue from W. A. Auden’s wonderful The Dyer’s Hand, I will assemble somewhat related fragments to provide peeks into my approach to reading poetry … do not mistake this as a claim that I read poetry well but as a claim that I know how I would like to read poetry … the fact is, like everyone else I struggle to read verse well.

I find the topic, How to Read Poetry, of the highest importance, the fact that we do not read poetry well means we do not listen to stories, watch movies or hear news stories well. Our culture suffers our casual attitude toward language. With luck, I will be able to communicate why I think this. I should probably have mentioned that up front where more people would have read it. But I did not. This is one of the reasons my prose sucks.

© 2009 Chrome Poet

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