Sunday, March 07, 2010

Where Poetry Takes Us

I thought to address this topic, as a couple of days ago I have looked from a new angle at “somewhere I have never traveled, gladly beyond” by e.e.cummings.

It’s been my observation that good poetry, or good literature for that matter, has something special to it.
Good poetry provides us with new insight at every attempt to peruse it, as if the piece in question becomes a newer version, morphing into something different than what it had been at first sight, and through this metamorphosis, also changing its readers. 

Going through e.e. cummings’ poem this week, I garnered some nuances which had previously escaped me.

I’ll focus on one.

The ability of poetry to take us somewhere we “have never traveled, gladly beyond any experiences”.

Where is that space that lies “beyond any experiences?” What are its main attributes?

I would like to suggest that the space of poetry, far and close, wherever the imagination of a poet and its readers anchor it, is, of course, infinite, and due to this lack of containment intimately and closely linked to freedom and individual empowerment.

So, if you will, poetry takes us into the renewed respect and affirmation of those around us and the beauty of being part of a group – a human link to a larger universe.

Which brings  us to its second attribute.

Poetry takes us into a place of beauty.
“Beauty” may seem a trite and scary word, but the place of beauty is intuitive for most of us on a good day and for ...well, ...possibly  all of us on a bad one.

Beauty comes to us equally through joy and inspiration and through catharsis and suffering, through doubt, despair and hopelessness, as a healing vision. 

Poetry, voicing the depth of our own souls, takes us on this healing path, and into the realm of beauty, as a redeeming hope.
Poetry takes us into a land of exploration.

Good poems are acts of self validation and growth, they challenge who we are and what we know, force us to ask questions that we never thought we had to, thus stretching our creativity.

They make us look at reality through different lenses that we borrow, not only for the short span of the poem, but for long time after we closed a book or powered down our PC.

So, we have come at the end of this post and if you know of other places where poetry takes us, feel free to let me know of them.


Anonymous said...

Hmm...i agree with every word. Poetry takes us back into at that moment when we discover a sense of serenity and unity (and sometimes displacement) with the world.

Irina said...

I love the displacement part, Omotade!

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