Discovering the Relevance of Words
If you were to survey 100 random people as to whether or not they enjoy poetry, I would wager you would get more negative replies than positive. (Obviously, we must be careful of selection bias – a high school for example would stack the deck in one way whereas a creative writing classroom in a private university might tilt the other way)
What is it that makes people so dislike such a beautiful art form? Misunderstanding? Sure. Lack of experience? Sure. Obfuscation? Why not.
I was reading TS Eliot last night and found myself having two completely opposite reactions to back to back poems, “Wow, that was beautiful…” and “Dude, what?!” I am an educated individual with a love of the written word and there are plenty of poems, poets, and authors that I look at and ask, “are you kidding me? Read that?” (I will never read Middlemarch)
Considering this initiative (The Poetry Question) began when a student suggested that poetry is no longer relevant to our society, we would be remiss if we didn’t explore that feeling. We have asked why and how it is relevant; we have asked what poetry is; we have asked for your favorite poets and authors; but we have yet to explore the dark side.
What causes this fear and loathing of the beautiful art? What don’t you (in the plural) like about poetry?
But we cannot explore as a them thing, it must be an us thing, or an I thing. So whether you are a love or words, a poet yourself, a student forced to visit the page, or someone who stumbled here by accident – whether you love, hate, or are indifferent toward poetry – please share your honest response.
QOTD: Which authors, poets, poems, or forms do you not like?