Poetry is a river; many voices travel in it; poem after poem moves along in the exciting crests and falls of the river waves. None is timeless; each arrives in an historical context; almost everything, in the end, passes. But the desire to make a poem, and the world’s willingness to receive it- indeed the world’s need of it- these never pass.
If it is all poetry, and not just one’s own accomplishment, that carries one from this green and mortal world - that lifts the latch and gives a glimpse into a greater paradise - then perhaps one has the sensibility: a gratitude apart from authorship, a fervor and desire beyond the margins of the self.
there is no shame in feeling hurt
when he tells you he sees you as a friend. i understand you are in pain
but it will not last forever because
soon you will come across someone
special. your kind of person.
you will be reminded that you are
loved every single day. you will feel weird. you will believe your life is just another perfect dream but you will realize that it is not and that strange feeling is just happiness.
ck.writes (on Instagram) // it has been a very long time you have been this happy. you have already forgotten what it feels like.
To interrupt the writer from the line of thought is to wake the dreamer from the dream. The dreamer cannot enter that dream, precisely as it was unfolding, ever again because the line of thought is more than that: it is a line of feeling as well.
Hello, I'm an older lady getting back into studying literature for the first time in a long time, and I come on this blog frequently as I admire you greatly. Do you have any tips for analysing poetry- things you look for, a structured way of analysing, or something similar? How long does it usually take you, to analyse one poem? Any resources you could inform me of or just advice from you would be highly regarded. I look forward to watching you grow through this page. Kind regards
Hi! So I typed a very long reply to this when I received it, accidentally closed the window and lost it all, & was too annoyed with myself to type it again! Today is a new day however, so giving it another go.
I’ve found the most helpful thing for me in analysing poetry & learning to probe deeper is reading about how other minds write and think about poetry. This can be in a really academic sense – there are many, many books written about how to understand poetry and I’ve found a couple of them to actually be incredibly enlightening – and also a personal sense, with writers, poets, and journalists chronicling their reactions to and readings of poetry. So here are some book recommendations, with links to pdfs where I can find them (though please do buy if you can – I make them available because I know academic texts are often prohibitively expensive or not available from local libraries, and access is an issue that trumps all others in my opinion). Organised haphazardly from more to less academic:
The Art of Recklessness: Poetry as Assertive Force and Contradiction by Dean Young
My Poets by Maureen McLane (this one is also life-changing)
The Night Sky: the Poetics of Experience by Ann Lauterbach
There are a few other things I do as well: google specific poems I really don’t understand to find commentary from other readers [Genius is sometimes really good for this], listen to the New Yorker poetry podcast, read the Poetry Daily Poem most mornings, read pieces on the Poetry Foundation website, and look through JStor and Google Scholar for academic articles on the specific poem or poet I happen to be reading. Biography also helps a ton & is so interesting.
I know some people have a complicated system of color-coding, extensive note-taking, and so on when approaching poetry, but to me this is 1. not necessary for someone training their mind to approach poetry in general rather than just a specific poem, 2. time-consuming in a way that’s prohibitive – you can only read so many poems when just reading one takes you forever. i end up just underlining lines i find most important, writing short phrases in the margin, maybe circling a word here & there, an exclamation point when I get really excited. Nothing fancy. I just read and scribble as I go, but not in a way that slows me down.