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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Approaching a Poem

As a writing instructor, I introduce my students to a variety of writing styles, including poetry. Poetry's true life is in the human mouth, mind, and soul. Todd Davis, author of three volumes of poetry, including The Least of These (Michigan State University Press, 2010), wrote: "(A poem) should be read aloud so the words vibrate in the mouth and in the chest. Our ears and tongues need to be involved. If you are unsure what a poem 'means,' don't worry. Read it again for the simple pleasure of reading it. If some meaning begins to take shape, wonderful. But a good poem will continue to evolve in its meaning and in its being over the course of your lifetime."

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