For this year’s final poem selection, I thought that I would feature an odd little poem by Billy Collins that exudes some bittersweet undertones as the speaker relates what happens when he/she tries to teach people to appreciate the beauty of poetry. Although the poem certainly resonates with me as an English teacher, especially when I teach poetry, the poem’s point can also apply to others as some of our best intentions can be horribly misunderstood…and the true intent of our efforts results in a tortuous experience for everyone involved.
This poem is dedicated to all of you Twinkles who have suffered such disappointments as you try to impress upon those around you the beauty or genuineness of something, only to have them misunderstand your point and distort what you originally intended. Not everyone will understand us all of the time. The comfort is that some people will, however, understand our heart and message…at least some of the time.
And sometimes, that’s just enough to keep us hopeful and persevering. 🙂
Here’s to wishing you all another glorious weekend as you soak in the quirky details of this poem! I’ll see you with another month of poems in 2017! 😉
Introduction to Poetry (by Billy Collins)
I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide
or press an ear against its hive.
I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,
or walk inside the poem’s room
and feel the walls for a light switch.
I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author’s name on the shore.
But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it.
They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.