poetry discussion discuss , do you agree or not?
Scientists have actually studied the impact of English and Literature

discuss , do you agree or not?
Scientists have actually studied the impact of poetry on the brain and found that, “poetry generated far more eye movement which is associated with deeper thoughtâ€_x009d_ (Gray). Our brains somehow recognize that the language we are reading/hearing is being conveyed in an unconventional way. The pondering poetry instigates can be a bit uncomfortable which is why I think so many of us resist it as teenagers and adults, though ironically, we desire this poetic method of learning as children. I found this to be major takeaway from the reading, “Verse Broadens the Mindâ€_x009d_- as children we almost always learned best from nursey rhymes. I guarantee that most of us still recall those rhymes to this day and pass this same method of learning down to our children. It was interesting to read that our ancestors had utilized the rhyme and rhythm approach as well when telling important stories to their younger generations. They knew this way of speaking was the best way to remember information. We can also see how these techniques boost memory through music artists like rappers who remember tons of words from their songs and can recite them at a rapid pace. While we may dread poetry for what it provokes, it is definitely beneficial for our brains and provides us with an opportunity for introspection as well as social connection. As Patrick Buckridge said in “Poetry: Better Than Textingâ€_x009d_, “poetry connects itself to people’s lives, defining, shaping, intensifying, and contextualizing their experiences, and opening up wider horizons of interest and pleasure for the future (Buckridge).

            Exploring poetry is multifaceted and cannot always be reliant on cutesy rhyming words… unfortunately. Often it is not easily explained and this complexity was what I felt to be the core idea behind “What is Poetry Forâ€_x009d_. Most of the poets in the video were a bit dumbfounded when asked the question “what is poetry for?â€_x009d_ and many of them struggled to provide a profound answer (I think that was the point). Poetry does not have one single purpose, it is intended to be intricate and expansive. As one of the poets from the video stated poetry is meant to, “ask questions and think about what their answers might beâ€_x009d_ (WWNorton).

            What makes this literary art so intriguing is that it can be purely subjective; it can be literal or metaphorical or both. Our interpretation of each word is largely based on our individual experiences. Matthew Zapruder mentions the allusive nature of poetry as he speaks about his understanding of Ashbery’s poem, “How to Continueâ€_x009d_. Zapruder notes how while reading Ashbery’s work he didn’t exactly know what he was looking for, but through each reading he was able to find a deeper meaning within the lines. As he said, “you have to be ready to be in the presence of mystery and the unknownâ€_x009d_ (Zapruder). The interview somewhat proved that there is no such thing as an accurate description or understanding of a poem. This argument was highlighted at the end of the discussion where Ashbery himself recounts a time when a reader believed his work (“How to Continueâ€_x009d_) to be about the AIDS epidemic. To which Ashbery acknowledged that the man’s perception of the poem is just as true and accurate as his original intention for the story. Ashbery went on to state that even as a poet/creator, he finds meaning in his work, “from other people very oftenâ€_x009d_ (Zapruder).

            I was actually a bit emotional after hearing James Baldwin read his poem, “Stagerlee Wondersâ€_x009d_. His words were powerful and conveyed a clear, quite literal, meaning. I felt that his poem was not so open to interpretation, but rather had specific intentions for the reader. His story was intended to showcase how, “time traps history in a lieâ€_x009d_ (Baldwin). Specifically, how white power and white superiority has been solidified through the white man’s control of history. Baldwin uses different literary tools to paint a picture of white people as hypocritical and deceived because they believe that they are civilized and moral- that their unjust actions are somehow justified through the power of God. He juxtaposes this sense of morality in the policeman whose eyes convey guilt for the actions he “mustâ€_x009d_ take against the black man. The poet underlines this ethical struggle through the line “crime is not what you have done to me but what you have done to yourselfâ€_x009d_. Baldwin also contrasts the concept of freedom between the white man and the black man, claiming that the doomed idea of what it means to be white is to be powerful. This unwavering desire to obtain power is ironically what enslaves white people, whereas black people are truly free to be themselves. This sense of freedom is juxtaposed by the fact that white people (at this point in history) were technically the only “free” ones and black people were literally enslaved.  James Baldwin’s overall message for “Stagerlee Wondersâ€_x009d_ is that he wants history to be reborn into something truthful, where people can exist as kinsman free from the struggle hold of power.

            The lesson I gathered from all of the readings is that poetry encourages us to think- it prompts us to question the many elements of life in a greater way. The answers we receive from those questions may be subjective but it seems there can be more value in the questions than in the answers.

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