Friday, November 2, 2007


I am currently teaching Paradise Lost to a jumble of juniors and seniors in high school; this is the curriculum left behind by the permanent instructor whose job I am taking for this year. I am impressed that he will tackle this again and again and I am finding myself falling in love with the puzzle of the language, just as I finally fell for Shakespeare.

My own style is free verse, as is the majority of poets writing today. Thus, the line break becomes crucial, the word choice and stanza break imperative to meaning. I have dabbled in form before, and I appreciate those contemporary poets who can sink into tradition and heritage and manage to create a decent rendition of a sonnet, a villanelle, a cinquain.

And there are the haiku, the small breaths, the puffs of poetry, that can cause the intake to be so startling.

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