For today’s class we continued the poetry presentations. I’m going to start with the last performance of the day, Penina’s reading of “New York at Night” by Amy Lowell. I was very surprised when Penina started reading. I wasn’t expecting one of the quietest people in our class to start off as strongly as she did. I especially enjoyed how the last time she read it; she emphasized certain words to give the poem more of a visual image. I think it’s interesting to consider when the poet lived, 1874-1925, during the Industrial Revolution. Even thinking back to Washington Square, I was surprised to hear that parts of New York City where pretty uninhabited. As the city became more urban, more people began moving there so, it must have been strange to see trees replaced with factories and apartment buildings.
Another memorable performance was Rob’s reading of “The Weary Blues” by Langston Hughes. When Professor Kahan played background music for Rob, I could envision this poem being read in a speakeasy. I thought the background music Professor Kahan played for Rob to get into the groove of the poem not only helped him but also the class as listeners. While Rob read his poem for the last time, I was also playing the music in my head.
James performed “Ing Grish” by John Yau. I thought this poem was going to just be a little funny poem with little meaning but I was wrong. The literary devices used in the poem are not simple and the meaning is a pretty deep one. I think in one reading the meaning might fly over someone’s mind but upon careful and repeated reading, the true meaning of the poem is revealed. I think it was daring for the poet to write a poem with so much meaning in a comical way.