Tuesday, April 1, 2008

We Interrupt This Birth Story...

We interrupt this birth story to bring you National Poetry Month. YAY! While I'm sure that I couldn't convince most of you to carry a poem in your pocket this month to read when and wherever the mood strikes, I will instead encourage you to learn a little about the craft of poetry. Wash from your mind the brain-numbing bullshit you learned in high school. Build a new understanding of what is considered by many to be a dying art.

For a lot of people, poetry is sort of this black hole into which all sorts of writing is dumped. I concur that this is quite the case in our current culture. However, there is a very real background to poetry and its creation. For some, it's a natural gift. For others, it's a learned skill. I liken it to those who can play the piano by ear and those who have to take lessons - both make music, some instinctively and some out of practice. I don't want to bore you with the didactic snobbery of it all, for that is the shit that makes most people give up on poetry before they ever even have the chance to discover the intricacies with which it is created. And that's a damn shame.

Poetry is continually evolving. There are always new forms in development. There are new rules created by poets. There are awesome combinations of poetry + insert-just-about-anything. And on that note, I'll take a moment to set you up with some links to some cool shit going on with poetry.

Hip-Hop and Poetry - Jason and the Beast
This cat is a Lou local. You've never heard Shakespeare like this. And his own lyrics kick ass, too. I know you bitches will be dancing in your cubicles. Web shout to JASON!
Poetry Chicks Will Dig - Kim Addonizio
You'll want to be her best friend/wine drinking bitch.
Poems for Every Occasion
If you're bored at work, check this out.
Poetic Forms and Techniques
This list is SHORT and leaves off some good stuff. But, hey - it's a fairly snot-like literary site. What would one expect???
Anthologies
Knowledge is power. Learn by reading.


I could go on and on, but I'll stop here. If you've got any poetry questions/thoughts/frustrations about the whole art form, post them in the comments. I'd love to get a discussion going...

NIKE HALF-MARATHON UPDATE: Unfortunately, The Dirty Thirties were not pulled in the lottery to run in San Fran this fall. BOO HISS. So my bitches and I are on the hunt for a different one to run...

8 comments:

Tessie said...

Do I have any THOUGHTS on the ART FORM? Oh, I am way over my head there.

Sorry about the Nike Half. Maybe next year? Be sure to tell us which race you DO run!

Jenny's Vegcafe said...

I love poetry.. but I hate reading about how it's written. My last semester of college was ruined by an awful, snarky poetry professor as much as I relished "Diving into the Wreck" and "complacencies of the peignoir".

I love writing it too when the mood strikes but please don't ask me to read about it's form... my brain goes numb. I like to enjoy my art without thinking about how the medium is made. I'm simple like that I guess.

mom of the year said...

Tessie: Yeah, BOO on Nike. But we'll find another, and I'll let you know. Perhaps San Antonio. Join us at the end???

Yeah. Thoughts on the art form. You totally prove my point. It gets all hairy for people. Yuck. Poetry is by the people, for the people.

Jen: Your prof sounds like the type of guy that totally takes the wind out of everyone's poetry sails. Sad, isn't it? That's totally my point. I always hated the "what does the poet mean?" question. The whole point of my poetry is "what does the reader take away?" I hate the dissectors. But mama loves her some iambic pentameter - for the challenge of writing it...

Saly said...

What the hell? Education? On Poetry? Surely, you are joking....

(I actually really like this post)

mom of the year said...

Saly: I know. Where's the snark, right? Yeah, education blows. I'd like to knock the education right outta me sometimes. HA HA HA HA HA HA. How's that baby coming???

Artemisia said...

Oh, it is National Poetry Month! A friend of mine sends me an e-mail with a poem a day all throughout April. Oh, yay!

You've inspired me to post my favorite poem tomorrow.

I am looking forward to a poetry discussion.

mom of the year said...

Art: Hey! Haven't seen you in a while. Yes, it is indeed poetry month. I will have to check your blog tomorrow to see what has you so inspired. LOVELY!

If you are a literary slut like me, you can sign up at poets.org to have a poem e-mailed to you daily. They even have poetry ringtones (OK, am I a complete dweeb for knowing that?).

Jenny's Vegcafe said...

No original thoughts on this posts.. just wanted to tell you I'm doing a spring giveaway if you want to put your name in the hat.