New PDF release: A Grain of Poetry: How to Read Contemporary Poems and Make

By Herbert R. Kohl

ISBN-10: 0060930713

ISBN-13: 9780060930714

Poetry has the facility to maneuver and problem the reader. it might accentuate or maybe rejoice distress, be cynical or wry, or simply snigger outright in an outrageous manner. Poetry is as critical and antic as existence, and but interpreting glossy poetry could be stunning to our experience of what language is or needs to be.In A Grain of Poetry, Herbert Kohl offers a sequence of guideposts to assist every person learn poetry and realize these poems that tell and encourage them. In transparent, direct language, he covers all the essential-but frequently unchartedpaths to figuring out poetry: shape and constitution, line breaks and pauses, rhythm and melody, imagery, and recitation. Written by means of one of many country's prime educators, A Grain of Poetry is a accomplished and obtainable consultant for all poets, scholars, and poetry fans.

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Extra resources for A Grain of Poetry: How to Read Contemporary Poems and Make Them A Part of Your Life

Sample text

The poem's melody is shaped by the sounds of words and clusters of words, and as you read your way into it, it makes sense to pause over them, read a line or a fe~ lines before returning to the whole poem. I find that this helps develop not only an understanding of the poem but also an under­ standing of my own voice and ways of clustering sounds and shap­ ing my ideas and feelings in language. Another poem that centers on babies, this one by Janice Mirikitani, has a very different melodic and rhythmic structure, and a very different sense of bitterness and pain.

On the other hand, when I am in the city, if I speak a poem I don't do it outside or in the hall, but in the privacy of my apartment or sometimes 68 A Grain of Poetry with friends at a picnic or on a hike. And I have learned to read poetry and listen to my own internalized voice so that poems can accompany me on an airplane or be my lunchtime reading. Learning to read a poem is like learning to sing. It has to do with following the complex rhythms of the verse, savoring the lan­ guage, and engaging the sensuous surfaces of the words, their look and their sounds.

Buried in concentration camps. Something withers starved of justice. There is no meat or fish or milk rationed to rutabagas and potatoes, infirmaries smell of death. My breasts are dried and fiat like this cracked earth beneath the barracks. Rhythm and Melody 77 The hot wind creeps into my womb and takes your breath. The hot, barren desert wind slices your hearts severs your throats before you could cry or blossom. Cry We will carry you beyond these gates and barbed wire that encage us. Run into the place of live flowers, walk the earth with you to the ocean with its eternal life, roaring for freedom, comb your hair black like kelp tied with bright red ribbons, tell you about destinies that lie before you vast as the orange horizon your arms reach like wings of astronauts, discoverers, peacemakers, singers, poets with breath and story.

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A Grain of Poetry: How to Read Contemporary Poems and Make Them A Part of Your Life by Herbert R. Kohl


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