Saturday, March 13, 2010

We are just plain folks that love words, language, reading poetry...

Anne Bradstreet (America's first woman poet)

"These are not the poets you remember from high school who sit in lonely rooms writing maudlin words that few might hear and fewer comprehend."

Willliam Shakespeare

This is the opening paragraph of an article about protest poetry that appeared in the Style Section of "The Washington Post" on March 12th.

Geoffrey Chaucer

It may be the poets the author of this article remembers, but it is certainly not the poets that I remember that were introduced to me in high school. I am sorry that the author had such bad luck.

Emily Dickinson

The depth and power of the poetry of Shakespeare, Chaucer, Thomas, Yeats, Keats, Milton, Hopkins were not maudlin to me. The poetry of Longfellow, Frost, Browning, Emerson, Dickinson, Crane, Coleridge, Carroll to name a few, were very understandable, even to a teenager.

W.B. Yeats

The author goes on to say..."Poets you say...Aren't they those solitary creatures, slaves to pen and paper, pulling out strands of hair, beating on unforgiving keys of typewriters and computers, always reaching for the more perfect word."
John Keats

I suppose this is written so as to contrast dramatically with the protest poets reading an antiwar poem near the Capitol.
John Milton

I cheer them on. But please dear Post writer, we are among you in other guises---not solitary, slaves, or hair pullers.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

We are just plain folks that love words, language, reading poetry and sometimes taking a stab at writing a poem.


  1. Folks that love words? Or folks who love words? I honestly don't know if one or both are correct.

  2. Mike is a tough critic!

  3. Grammar lesson:
    According to Warriners "English Grammar and Composition":
    Which for things only, that may be used to refer to either things or people, who for people only.

  4. So which do you prefer:

    He's the man who I fell in love with


    He's the man that I fell in love with


  5. I think who would have been a better choice as in folks who in my opening to March 13th's blog, but as for the man and love....neither one because that's a statement that's ended a preposition with.

  6. That's a rule up with which I will not put.

  7. Here's to getting rid of rules. Full circle back to poetic license.