I don’t know about you but my thoughts on poetry when I first started reading it were pretty bland. Most of my memories consisted of boring English GCSE lessons spend over-analysing each individual line of a poem to the point where I couldn’t even remember what the poem was about in the first place.
Fast forward to 2015 and somehow I’ve fallen back in love with this form of writing again and I believe you can too. For me poetry is very much like art, where you’re drawn to pieces you genuinely find interesting rather than being spoon fed the text in a school setting. Everyone finds their love for something in different ways, so I thought I’d offer some tips on how to fall back in love with poetry again.
1. Get hooked on slam poetry
For me this was the key way I got back into this genre. I, like some people, spotted some of the better known slam poetry about feminism and racial equality on Youtube and got hooked. The topics were captivating, contemporary and more importantly it was p o w e r f u l. It’s an super easy way to work your way back in and requires very little effort to watch and enjoy.
2. Pick up a poetry anthology
Instead of focusing on an author, how about focusing on a theme? If there's a particular topic you're interested in, check if there's an anthology of poem that surrounds it. You're more likely to read it if it's something you would read anyway
3. Read poetry out loud
There's an ebb and a flow to the words in a poem, and the natural rhythm of this form of writing lends itself to being read aloud. Discover the power behind the words and have a play with reading it in different ways. If you have the chance, attend a poetry reading, like slam poetry it's an easy way to digest the text.
4. Don't reach for the classics just yet!
I think there's a pressure, like with any art form to reach straight for the likes of Blake or Ginsberg. But just because they're considered 'classic' doesn't mean you will necessarily enjoy them. Delve into the genre and discover what makes you tick. That may be poems by Wordsworth or it may even be writing by up and coming 21st Century poets.
So there’s four easy ways to ease your way back into reading poetry again.
Have you got any tips?
This post was written by regular reviewer Ria, get to know her here