An Introduction to Poetry Monday

One of my goals for this blog is to be able to focus on at least one poem or poet a week. Hopefully this will introduce both you and me to new poems, poets, and types of poetry. Before I introduce the three poems for this week (I couldn’t just choose one) I’d like to start with a disclaimer. A year ago I wasn’t even reading poetry let alone writing it; my relationship with poetry was one of avoidance. This all changed when I finally took a required course for my writing major at Whitworth University. The course was an upper-division course called Advanced Poetry Workshop, which for me, was a more intimidating course title than Francophone African Literature and Film, or Literary Criticism. However, my fears faded during our first class session when the amazing woman and wonderful poet Laurie Lamon introduced herself wearing green tights and bearing Oreo cookies. Although she doesn’t have biological children of her own, Laurie is one of the most motherly women I know, and her efforts to re-introduce me to poetry completely changed my mind about poetry being ‘confusing’ and ignited an appreciation of poetry of my own. In my course reflection I wrote the following about the course:

“I think I can best describe my personal writing process as learning how to become a runner. Like poetry, running is difficult for me. I’ve often told myself I hated it. However, this is not true—I don’t hate running, and I certainly don’t hate poetry, but both take deliberation, patience, and a vow to keep moving. Also like running, before sitting down to write, or start, a poem I found myself finding any excuse to get out of it, but when I finished I feel refreshed and accomplished.”

With this being said I’d like to invite you to give poetry another try–look at it from a fresh perspective– or just further your own love for poetry. Also, I would like to invite any comments on the poetry I post, what you like, what you think could have been executed better, and any poets or poetry you are currently reading. I certainly do not consider myself an expert on contemporary poetry and I would love to learn a few more names.

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