Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Poetry Vocalized

After yesterday's experience in class and a lot of wonderful poetry reading by V.B. Price I feel that we should talk a little bit more about how poetry is vocalized. If any of you all have a favorite poem spoken please share, I would love to hear them. One of my favorites is called "OCD" by Neil Hilborn, there is a link below. I found that he has a lot of emotion to his words and he is passionate and it brings me to tears every single time I listen to or watch it. What do you find most important in poetry readings? Feel free to talk about thoughts on V.B. Price's readings or Neil Hilborn what they did right, or maybe what they didn't do so well. Enjoy!



  1. For me, poetry is meant to be read with a lot of dramatic pauses, whispers, and intentional enunciations. Sometimes, my own voice or brain get in the way of really feeling or expressing the emotions the author meant to capture. Quite honestly though, I can't wrap my head around the idea of "understanding" poetry. The words themselves, when read together, contain no actual meaning, but rather convey imagery and mental visuals. I had a really hard time (but a quite rewarding one) reading VB Price's Chaco Trilogy because my eyes literally kept glazing over. Or I would skim the words without actually UNDERSTANDING them. But then I'd have to go back through the poem, and "digest" it. Rather than understanding what was going on, I let each individual phrase convey to me an image of red, or blue, sad, happy, afraid, nostalgic, etc.

  2. I personally think poetry is hard. I don’t think poetry can really be judged because like we talked about in class, it touches people in different ways. It means something different to every person who either reads it or hears it. Sometimes, I can see the emotion behind certain poems but I don’t really feel that emotion. I know that it’s their but I just can’t make a connection. I think that is why, for me, it is hard to write poetry or read it.

    However, I really enjoyed listening to V.B Price read his poems. Like you said Jaime, poetry is meant to be spoken. It is a totally different experience when you hear as oppose to reading it. I have never been to a poetry reading but now I think I have to go to one.

    I think the best poetry includes a lot of emotion. I also think the best poetry doesn’t necessarily follow the rules of writing. A good poet knows how to break those rules and still make the writing seem coherent.

    As for a favorite poem, well, I don’t think I have one. However, if lyrics count as poetry, then there are many poems that have captivated my heart. Some examples are Edith Piaf’s “Je ne regretted rien” and Imagine Dragon’s “Demons”.

  3. I enjoy poetry being read aloud. It is like what you said Jaime, the pauses, whispers, and enunciations give the poetry more effect. Even when I try to give my own dramatic emphasis to the poetry the poet may have a different way of performing their poems. When I read V.B. Price’s Chaco Trilogy some poems just went over my head, but then there was one verse that caught my attention and I was drawn back to the poem. However, it like what everybody was saying: we each interrupt poetry in our own way. And it can be said about any forms of writing, medium, etc.

    There was one poet that I enjoyed listening to, and it was N. Scott Momaday. He has such a rich and interesting voice and when he read some of his poems I was engaged and enjoyed listening to his performance.

  4. Agreed! Poetry read aloud can have a lot more power than poetry in our heads. I always think of Neil Gaiman when this subject comes up; whether it's poetry or prose, hearing him read his own work gets across humor and extra nuances that I'd otherwise miss out on. One of my favorite examples of this is "The Day the Saucers Came," because on its own the poem reads a bit like some wacky bit of words. But with Gaiman reading it aloud, it has a lot more weight to it.

    There are a few people who are very good at reading poetry that they didn't write (many actors do masterful performances of Shakespeare, for example), but it's always a joy to hear an author read their own work.


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