Poetry: A necessary instrument in coping with more and more advanced life of reports columns

In his poem “Introduction to Poetry”, Billy Collins writes that he urges readers to hold his work “up to the light / like a color slide”. Instead, they too often want to “tie the poem to a chair with a rope / and torture a confession from it”.

That’s the problem with poetry; We have been taught that it is difficult, that it needs to be deciphered, that it is almost sinful to leave a poem unresolved on a table.

I say this because few people realize that April is National Poetry Month, as if warm weather, spring flowers, and green trees aren’t a reason enough to celebrate.

Like so many other things that were once cherished, often revered, and occasionally hated as a result of memorization and sweaty recitation in crowded English classrooms, poetry is now more misunderstood and underestimated than ever – perhaps even more so.

But with the advent of new poetic faces like Amanda Gorman, winner of the National Youth Poet Laureate, and Brandon Leake, winner of America’s Got Talent, poetry may be making a comeback.

Despite the tendencies towards standardization and much-needed skills in the workplace, more and more school teachers may and should be dipping their toes back into poetic waters, regardless of the old party line that poetry doesn’t get anyone a good job or prepare them for a dip Craft or trade. The same could have been said centuries ago, when poorly educated factory workers worked in appalling working conditions, but many workers still revered poets as the voices of the nation and exalted some who advocated the rights of those who read poetry in newspapers. Generations of both the working class and the social elite have learned to read with poems whose cadences and rhythms are contained in every primer ever published.

Should we care about poetry in these seemingly hectic and unpredictable times? Naturally. Not only does writing poetry give some people (both writers and readers) some sort of relief valve – Robert Frost said, for example, that organizing poetry helped him put his own life in order – but reading could do us, too Providing opportunities to learn things that prose cannot. There is even evidence that poetry helps people with dementia deal with their confusing and confusing dilemma.

The continent of education continues to diverge on subjects that emphasize creative expression, but last year’s pandemic has clearly given us an understanding of what closed theaters, muted symphonies, and closed playhouses really mean. Online chat and texting, video conferencing, and virtual lessons, as helpful as they are, are no substitutes.

Former Poet Laureate Shari Wagner, who is obviously a little in favor of the usefulness of poetry, says, “Poetry is an art form that opens the doors to connect the inside with the outside, what is with what is not , is familiar. Through poetry we find confirmation that we are not alone and that we feel from a more expansive self. “

The author of three collections of poetry, including her latest “The Farm Wife’s Almanac” (2019, DreamSeeker Books, 116 pages), adds Wagner: “Poetry is much more than just entertainment. It can bring comfort, revelation, confusion, joy, wisdom, and courage. I love Maya Angelou’s definition of poetry as something that “… puts strength in your spine so that you can stand and put your life together”.

Gorman, who was introduced at President Joe Biden’s inauguration, may have piqued interest in poetry last January. “Your powerful poem” The Hill We Climb “definitely helped promote poetry among the ,” says Wagner. “I hope it was also a reminder of the historical, communal functions of poetry: to bring rain to a parched land, to heal the wounded, to unite the divided, to bring about a new day. Poetry is sometimes stereotyped as something written from a space that, apart from the world, is very private and island-shaped. Gorman’s poem extends the recognition of the poet-community relationship. “

Years ago, I took a poetry writing class as part of my college major. I wasn’t very good at it, and I think my decent grade reflected a serious effort more than the quality or insight of my poems. However, like a backyard mechanic, I’ve tinkered with a bit of poetry over the years, and I was never very concerned that anything under the hood would ever be seen. I did it for myself.

Poetry doesn’t have to be work; It’s a miraculous thing, something we can cope with a world that we sometimes safely believe has lost its collective mind. Please, especially this month, feel free to do what Collins asks, “Go inside [a] Poetry room / and feel the walls for a light switch. “

You can contact Mike Lunsford at [email protected] His website is at www.mikelunsford.com. Mike’s books, including his latest book, This Old World, are available in many stores and on Amazon.

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