Friday, February 1, 2013

Might as Well Do Something

This blog has been up for over two years, and I haven't updated it in a year. Why? Life happens after the MFA. I'm not writing about literary accomplishments or (the multitude) of literary failures. Rather life -- you know the things you experience in person than in a book so that you can write a book about your experiences you had in person. This is not an "I'm living my life" blog -- this blog is meant to set up something that I want to do.

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So after I "celebrated" my 30th birthday, I decided to read some poetry everyday for various reasons:

1) I wrote and read a little bit here and there the past couple of months leading up to my birthday -- mostly during the Summer. I didn't want to be distracted by video games while applying for jobs, and I didn't want to focus on how many employers ignored my resume -- so I turned to poetry. To be honest, I don't know why.

2) Retail places didn't hire me unfortunately, but I finally found a job for an after school programs/charter school. Even though the pay and the hours are not stable, a job is a job. Furthermore, my bosses trust me to set my own syllabus and material. I studied poetry for too long to really know and teach anything else.

3) After a few months of exposing 10-13 year olds to poetry with mixed results (who would've thought they wouldn't like the poem "Daddy" (I did), this thought occurred to me on my 30th birthday, "I have nothing to lose if I read poetry and send my work out."

Actually, scratch that -- I'll lose a lot of money if I send my work out to contests, but sending work online to literary magazines -- why not? Normally, I would be using that time to play video games or sleep. And although sleeping or playing video games are not a waste of time, I spent too much time, money, and focus on writing (like around 5 years+) to not give me a shot. And What's two hours spent on sending out work and reading poetry on a free day? It's the same amount of time to do the following: watch as sports game? Level up to 81 on Skyrim (which only takes two hours)? Cook lunch for people? Grade papers thoroughly? Those things can wait and/or are not necessary.

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So since November 28, I've been reading (a minimum) a poem a day. First it started out with one site, then another, and now I read "daily poems" from six different sites:

Poets.org
Poetry Daily
Verse Daily
Poetry Foundation
Poem Hunter
Writer's Almanac

They all post different poems of style, time frame, and author. It's a good mix.


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I decided to print out the poems I read that I found interesting -- ones I questioned why I liked it or hated it, ones that made me feel something. I write my thoughts on them -- what I learned, what I think is a good technique, what I think is a bad technique, etc. Why? Force of habit, Stockholm syndrome -- might as well give in to mental conditioning.

Now, I have a hefty collection of poems and I think it'd be a waste of time not saving it somewhere for future reference (I don't want to read and analyze a the same poem twice unknowingly), and since paper is not as durable as internet storage, I thought I might as scan the poems with my notes and post them online. Why not? it's just an added 15 minutes to the 2 hours.

So this is where the blog is going -- analyzing poetry. I found out interesting things about myself and about poetry since starting this. Also, currently, League of Legends is down, I might as well do something while I wait until the servers are back online.

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