So a couple of years ago, someone had asked me to list up 10 things-to-do, if I were to die after 24 hours. I quickly jotted down the list on a tissue paper. One of the things on the list was to re-read some of my favorites Poems.
Considering that I wouldn't have time to re-read books, as impending death was 24-hours close. However, I had to squeeze in literature in one way or the other. So, I chose Poetry. At this point, some will uproar at my inclusion of poetry in a form of literature, (Which it is! ), To them, I would say 'spare me the debate'.
Poems: An escape or a way to evacuate the emotions, which we find too complicated to express. Interestingly, it creates an intangible barrier from oneself and the sentiment that one struggles to express. Poetry puts in the poet's perspective from a safe place. Poet is not in a vulnerable position where one has a sense of sanctuary. A poem is a voice of recluse thoughts.
A Poem I wrote on my Tumblr Blog
If the Moon could see me now, what would she think of me?
Burning a used candle, what audacity?
Am I too arrogant to stand on a pedestal and compare myself to thee …
If Polaris could see me now, won’t he think why I don’t follow?
Weeping all the tears in the twinkle, how dare to even hope so?
Chesty, proud whatever it be, I am no lighthouse to anybody …
If Jupiter could see me now, what would she see?
Twirling paramour in her wine-stained dress, Oh what a baby?
To Ladylike? Well, I am still not gravitating every bloke towards me …
Poetry, like other forms of art, is a means to express and tell exactly how one is feeling. One of my all time favorite poetess is Sylvia Plath. The essence of her poems comes from the genre of Confessional Poetry. Confessional poetry can into existence Post-Second-World-War, dealing with the dilemma of conflicting emotions. It is often pertaining to the personalized experience of the poet.
I enjoy the way Plath kicks metaphorical ass. One of my favorite poem by Plath is "Daddy" depicting the love-hate relationship that Plath shared with her Father. The Poem starts with Plath addressing her 'daddy', stating he do not sing the rhymes for her anymore. Putting up her age is a hinting the reason for no more rhymes by her father.
You do not do, you do not do
Any more, black shoe
In which I have lived like a foot
For thirty years, poor and white,
Barely daring to breathe or Achoo.
She expresses she feels restricted by the metaphorical shoe. inferring she is a child afraid of her father, who follows the rules. Just within a few lines, it gets brutal and resentful.
Daddy, I have had to kill you.
You died before I had time—
Later in the poem, she is contrasting the protagonist of the poem (her father) with Hilter and herself with a Jew, repeatedly. It has a depiction of the so-called "daddy issues", that I am scornful towards (but psychology is complicated).
A Jew to Dachau, Auschwitz, Belsen.
I began to talk like a Jew. [...]
I have always been scared of you,
With your Luftwaffe, your gobbledygoo.
And your neat mustache [...]
A man in black with a Meinkampf look
And a love of the rack and the screw.
And I said I do, I do. [...]
By the end of the poem, she contrasts the protagonist with Dracula. Closing the poem with a Punch-In-Gut line was probably the worse she should do to inflict and express her emotional conflict towards her dead father.
Daddy, daddy, you bastard, I’m through.
Read the full Poem here
The theme of Plath's poem is often Death, Suicide, Depression, Relationships, etc The beauty with which she builds up an image in the reader's mind is fascinating. Apart from the poetry, She wrote a novel that is semi-autobiographic, The Bell Jar. Though she lived a troubled life her work is quintessentially feminist. I yearn for more to read from her... But, unfortunately, there is not so much as her career was cut short by death.
PS Let me know some of your favorite poems and poets.