I’m no guru, and I don’t want to be one.
I don’t have a terminal degree in poetry.
For that matter, I received my B.A. in philosophy. Regardless, I have spent some time reading, writing, and dissecting poetry in an academic setting. That fact is probably fairly obvious from the essays that I’ve shared here!
In thinking about my background and my tendency to just jump into that work, I came upon an idea: I may not have all the answers, but maybe I could write a series on some of the esoteric vocabulary/techniques/culture that I take for granted when I think about poetry. A few years ago, I didn’t have this toolkit at all. And I honestly can’t think of another free resource that goes into these topics in the way that would have helped me get to where I am.
(To be fair, there is probably something, somewhere, by someone that breaks all of this stuff down in this way. I just don’t know that resource!)
So this series is a chance for me to practice breaking down what I know, to help anyone that I may unintentionally alienate, and to hear from you if you have any better information that I’m overlooking. I hope you enjoy it and follow along!
For the first actual post I’ll be considering how to read or perform a poem. That will take a lot into account, but it is a question that I was really puzzled by when I first dove into poetry in a more serious way.