Friday, April 8, 2016

Role of the Poet:

April is poetry month here in the United States.

When one mentions poetry, the response from others is a collective fear.

However, I believe the role of the poet is to reawaken the sense ordinary things, the hum drum, the things we trip over when we are on auto pilot.  Poets reconnect us to the things we have become blinded to.  Therefore, all poetry should be understood by all adults.  (Sorry kids but some poems are not understood by you yet, because you need experience to understand the feeling.)

So poetry should be so dull that everyone gets it? No! Poems should be flexible and understood at a variety of levels.  When I say all adults, I mean the poem at a concrete level should be understood by all adults.   If a professorsesque snobs writes poetry to look intelligent and fails entrance to the poem at a concrete level, they should not be writing poetry.  These snits are jerks who think that they are proven smarter when others feel dumb.  They are not cool at all.

An example of a great poem is  William Carlos Williams the Red Wheel Barrow:

so much depends
upon

a red wheel
barrow

glazed with rain
water

beside the white
chickens

This poem could be just a simple portrait of a farmhouse with chickens and tools.  Most adults know what a red wheel barrow is, have seen morning dew, and have experienced white chickens,  But the fun part is trying to figure out why white chickens, and why red wheel barrow.    And it does not matter which level of meaning you gleam from the poem, if it creates a picture, or emotes a feeling than the poet has succeeded.  
By the way:
 William Carlos Williams was a doctor by trade and wrote his poems in between seeing patients.  He also felt that poetry was to be experienced by all and that concrete things, not ideas were the way to awaken the spirit. 

 For an analytical look at Wm. Carlos Williams the Red Wheel Barrow  : (click the link)

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