Poetry is My Gig

T

oday I spoke on Japanese poetry and it made me realize how much I love talking about poetry and how it reflects who we are as humans. I truly believe that we interpret everything in our lives–consciously or not–by associating them with our past experiences. Some may be relevant, some may not, but experience influences how we interpret any given situation we confront. And since we all have different experiences, no two people interpret the same situation in exactly the same way–although they may be similar.

There are those who would argue vehemently against me, and I welcome their input. It would be stupid of me to think I know everything, although there are some I have met–both liberals and conservative–who think they have all the answers. Well, bully for them. I always admire a person who is confident to the max. I just make sure I stay out of their way, and hope they never get elected to office. *ahem*

In any event, poetry requires the reader to respond to the sparse words on a page. The more experience you have–whether you are well-read or simply worldly–allows you to read more into a poem, to get more out of it, to enjoy its many nuances. And this is a direct reflection of the human condition. Every time we are confronted with a situation–a red light, a large credit card balance, or a hot date–we are required to respond and the more experience we have, the better we will respond to the situation–stopping, using either a heavy duty shredder or antiperspirant. Not that I’m trying to justify my profession or the field of literature.

But this is what I do–profess the beauty and relevance of poetry. And I love doing it.

Getting To Know Someone From A to Z

C – Career: Education; specifically, I am a college professor teaching Japanese language and literature. My field of expertise is premodern court poetry, focusing on the intertextual nature of poems of the late-Heian early Kamakura period.

P.S.

The song I have playing is 48 kbps–I don’t want anyone to get hung up loading my page. My own copy is 128 kbps, so if you like it enough to want it, please leave me a message and I will be more than happy to share…

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