The Poetry Question

Discovering the Relevance of Words

QOTD – May 16 – Hitting that Figuratively Deeper Home

On Monday my students will venture into the world of poetry. We will be focused mainly in the world of Slam / Performance Poetry. It’s cutting. It tends to hit a figuratively deeper home with this generation. But that’s where I’m a little confused. Does it? It’s only been the last few years that I’ve been really interested in Slam. Prior to that, my love never moved from 16th-19th Century British poetry, or poetry of the Harlem Renaissance.

Because it was cutting. It hit a deeper home. It did something to me that nothing had ever done before.

But I was a reader growing up. I didn’t watch a ton of television. I lost myself in books, and played outside, and wrote wrote wrote my stories and poems and lists and notes.

So, maybe this generation isn’t that generation. Maybe we’ve moved on as a culture, and it’s not a bad thing at all. To watch poets perform their work, live their work, and impress upon us exactly what they are saying, it brings to life everything that was simply once in my head.

I look forward to my students’ reactions to pieces, ideas, words they’ve never heard before – at least not strung together like this. Even the ones who want to scream that they don’t like it, or don’t get it, or that they are bored. Because really, they’re just afraid – of themselves, of the words they’re hearing, of opening up to anyone at all.

So, what is your poetry? What do you enjoy?

About Christopher Margolin

Chris Margolin spent more than a decade in Education as a high school English teacher, and is now an Instructional Coach for the Longview School District. He is also the founder of The Poetry Question, an online journal which focuses on reviews of small press poetry publications, and runs a regular series called "The Power of Poetry," where notable poets share their personal stories of how poetry has affected their lives. Margolin resides in Vancouver, Washington with his wife, and daughter.

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