Friday, April 4, 2008

My "Relationship" with Poetry

I'm about to get woo-woo.

I've always considered reading poetry to be a private, personal endeavor. I have an intimate experience (get your minds out of the gutter) with each poem I read. It's probably the closest I ever get to spirituality. So studying poetry in graduate school has been difficult, to say the least. Yes, it's useful to bounce one's ideas about a poem off of others. It's useful to have to articulate those ideas and, sometimes, defend them. It's useful to listen to what others have to say and develop your own ideas through discussion. I say tell that to my 101 students all the time. That being said, the single thing I'm most looking forward to after graduation is regaining poetry as a private, undiscussed experience. Sometimes when I'm sitting in class, listening to the discussion, I can't help but think that all this leads to is reading-by-committee or coming to a loosely defined consensus about a poem. Sure, not everyone agrees, but the focus seems to be on coming up with the most academically acceptable, logically provable reading of the poem at hand. And that has never been my individual approach to reading poems. It's an odd proposition to post on a blog about how I'm looking forward to being able to read without having to put my interpretations into the public domain where my thought processes may or may not be picked apart.

Mostly, I just can't wait to reacquaint myself with my own thought processes outside of an academic context. This is why I wouldn't make a good scholar. This is why it's the end of the road for me in academia.

{/end woo woo}

Now here's for the news. Partner Doug has a job in Seattle waiting for him at the end of May. This means we'll be moving in a little over a month. What was once in the nebulous future now has specific dates assigned to it and is now very much in the realm of reality.

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