How To Understand Poetry

Understanding Poetry
Poetry of Mother Nature

 

I don’t remember when I started liking poetry. Probably I was born with it or was fascinated by the lyrics of Mother Nature.

When I walk down my memory lane, one image looms large and that is how much effort one of our English professors used to put into explaining the poetry of Tennyson and Wordsworth. While the latter was relatively easier to understand, the former much more complex and obviously we didn’t like the one who was more challenging.

The real challenges came my way when ‘Paradise Lost,’ an epic poem by John Milton was not taught in the class (or if it was, I must be mentally absent) and even when it was discussed, it didn’t evoke any interest!

While prose can be an effortless reading unless it is stream of consciousness writing, poetry can become quite boring if we are not familiar with its techniques and tones.

Despite the tests and trails, I continued to like poetry and slowly discovered that it is a genre par excellence. It can say a lot through literary techniques, which only an admirer of Literature can understand. I still struggle to understand some subtle messages conveyed through simple words.

I have to read my blogger friend Bela’s poems thrice to understand the undertones that appear enigmatic initially. They also inspire ideas to compose another poem.

Ambiguous ideas in a poem provide a food for thought and chisel your creative skills.

Who has the time and the inclination to read and re-read a poem in this fast-paced world? Only poetry lovers do!

Another lovely friend Sue, who is a poet and a prolific blogger of amazing eminence inspires with her poetry.

Most of my blogger friends are elaborative when they share their reflections on my post. Whenever I post a poem, I get a lukewarm response and I often wonder – is it because of poetry?

Quickly my mind hurtles back, my interactions with teenagers get refreshed, all their expressions, yawns and glances stand before me, bringing those lovely memories of hate-love relationship we had with poetry…when we would try to convince each other why poetry is good or bad and how we could understand it better.

I am not an expert but I have figured out a few ways to understand poetry.Understanding Poetry

How to understand a poem:

All readers have their own approach and interpretation but how imagery is used defines a poem. Can you read between those special words to fathom their depth?

It is better to read slowly. Stop and ponder over at the word that seems simple but abstruse.

“If you’re curious, there is always something new to be discovered in the backdrop of your daily life,” says Roy T. Bennett. Be curious. Inquisitiveness and interest are two important elements that lead to our understanding of a poem.

Poetry can’t be scanned and understood like prose as the former demands concentration, attention and gentle reading.

If you read a poem in a hurry, you would miss the real meaning. Many times words are used as metaphors.

You have to be familiar with most common literary techniques like simile, metaphor, hyperbole, personification, alliteration and assonance.

Imaginative flights of poets can’t be predicted, we have to fly with them to figure out their proficiencies.

Critical analysis of a poem reveals the nuances of its theme, undertones and other signals, which remain hidden to a scanner.

Some poems are ambiguous. Probably they relate to the poet’s past or buried memory, which he wouldn’t like to reveal yet, give a vent to his emotions through writing.

“Poetry is just the evidence of life. If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash.” – Leonard Cohen

Do you like poetry? Do you read a poem slowly?

Thank you for reading this. Please add your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

If you have liked this article, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Balroop Singh.

 

 

 

Trapped In Time.. #Waiting

waiting

Trapped in time
I stood there, crouching behind the pillar
Suppressing the urge to climb up
Resisting the little light
My only link to the outside world

If you call me a coward…you may
I wouldn’t defend myself
As I was guarding peace
I was shielding secrets
Spilling them could have doomed us

Keeping myself away was the only hope
Waiting for the hour to pass
Longing for cataclysm to cease
Hoping to see the love and light
Of the new world

Trapped in time
I froze…But…
Some issues remain unresolved
Some sores keep festering
My whispers to self still reverberate

In our palace of plaintive peace
Eerie sounds of strife shake me
Self-doubts stir me out of slumber
Challenges of the new world
Stare at us, sardonically!
© Balroop Singh
All rights reserved.

Inspired from Sue Vincent’s Waiting #writephoto photo prompt.

You can click on Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh to read more poems.

If you have liked this poem, don’t forget share it at your favorite social networks.

Thank you for your support. Please share your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

Future

Unknown Future

More than once I have made
Inroads into the future
Stepped into the unknown,
To peep, to think, to decide.
 
Amazing pictures have lured me,
A lovely deep forest, frightening.
A vast valley, intimidating
A long road, reassuring.
 
A positive spirit, soaring high
A nagging doubt, pulling back
A persistent hope, guiding me,
Assuring me…go ahead!
 
Though uncertain, I step forward
Trust is my only companion,
Love for loved ones
The only cementing force.
 
As I wait for the true picture
As I look at the fragile relationships
As I meet a new face everyday
I wonder why future is so obscure!
 © Balroop Singh.
You can click on ‘Sublime Shadows of Life’ by Balroop Singh to read more such poems.
If you have liked this poem, please share it at your favorite social networks.
Thank you for your support. Please share your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

Ode To Poetry

Poetry

Time stands still in your clique
Stream of consciousness flows faster
Solitude becomes sweeter
Silent soliloquies speak softly

Imagination soars in your company
Insights find a crystal clear channel
Enlightening moments ignite ideas
You add a calming color to them
 
Sunsets lend their hues to my words
Moon breathes life into them
Mesmerizing dawn dons divine light
When you visit my affable abode
 
You inspire me to look at the clouds
Creative fairies step out and smile
Somber thoughts spill out to greet you
You enthrall them when you meet
 
You enhance my inner voice
You absorb all my woes
You draw me out of my cocoon
You tell me to keep desires in tune
 
You are my perceptive mentor
I was delighted to discover you
Only you could direct me through streams
Thank you for giving shape my dreams.
© Balroop Singh.

You can click on Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh to read more such poems.
If you have liked this poem, please share it at your favorite social networks.
Thank you for your support. Please share your reflections, they are much appreciated.

Welcome To Our Island Of Fantasy…

photo-6photo
Our train is about to move
Come, hop on… you could be left behind
just like little teddy
But he never bawls,
He sits around and drawls
listening to music…
Oh! Lets put the volume down!
Please wait!

This train can wait for hours
It only moves
when our two-year-old driver directs
sometimes the push is too sudden!
Pixie watches…her moo-moo starts
Suddenly the train breaks into parts
Its breakfast time for everybody,
as Pixie and Suzie are ready

Train journey is instantly abandoned
All attention is towards monkey, still sleeping
So is the giraffe and the elephant.
The snake is hissing around for milk
The knobs and handles of the doors overflow…
Bowls are full of milk
But the monkey starts jumping on the bed!
And as usual, he falls.

There is a big commotion!
Everybody is eager to see what happened
Oh…the monkey has bumped his head.
Duckie rushes to get ice for him,
which is rubbed on his head
He is laughing in no time, jumping again.
Donna and Bunny join him.

Breakfast is forgotten
Jumping spree goes on and on
Many of them get hurt but no crying,
‘NO crying’ is the command of our little Angel,
all conform to it.
Someone opens the wardrobe
there is a big hullabaloo.

Everybody rushes in,
pulling whatever comes in their hand…
out come the hats, the tiaras and the masks
our dear commander asks…
Where is my bug?
The bug takes us into moonlit night
The wardrobe is full of heavenly light
With stars twinkling all around
Everyone watches in delight!

Where is my runaway bunny?
Leaving them all in the lurch
She finds her favorite puzzle
She pulls out all the pieces
spreads them all around the room.
In comes Johny, sugar in hand
Runs all around the house
Followed by Sophia, Minnie and Dolly
Sugar jar drops down
All the din gets drowned…

As Barnyard party is in full swing
All are welcome
It’s so much fun
And it continues…
 

Living in the world of illusion, which is devoid of all the stress…living my childhood once again in the make believe world of my granddaughter and grandson who looks perplexed as he is too little to join us in our barnyard dance…feeling blessed!

 
© Balroop Singh.
You can click on Sublime Shadows of Life by Balroop Singh to read more poems.
If you have liked this poem, please share it at your favorite social networks.
Thank you for your support. Please add your valuable comments, they are much appreciated.