Wednesday, March 02, 2005

My Ten

I got this from Anne and Great American Pinup and probably a few others. The idea is to think of the ten poems that you would use to introduce yourself to another person. I take this as meaning the ten poems that mean the most to you, that are closest to who you are as a person, and to what poetry means to you in your life. My list:

Chaucer, “Prologue, Canterbury Tales”
Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”
Yeats, “The Second Coming”
Plath, “Edge”
Ginsberg, “Howl”
Rich, “Diving Into the Wreck”
Forche, “Ourselves or Nothing”
Gluck, “Mock Orange”
Wright, “The Southern Cross”
Doty, "The Embrace"

What themes do I see? The importance of faith, love, emotion, the consciously-lived life. But where is the humor, the light-heartedness? What poem could I choose to introduce that part of me? (Perhaps McHugh's "Etymological Dirge?") I am sure I am leaving something really important out; or if I were to do the same exercise a week from now I’d come up several different poems.


jenni said...

You definately need a funny poem, or at least one that is witty--cuz you are very witty! I've been reading this book called, "The Essential Crazy Wisdom," and the four archetypes of crazy wisdom are:

The Clown--who shows us the awkward human condition by exageration and miming--the too big frown and grin, our vulnerablities.

The Jester--the wits and critics who expose the establishment's lies and cast light on contemporary social conventions. Jesters work with puns and parodoxes.

The Tricksters--the rascals of myth and folklore. They seem to emerge from a time before good and evil and act out our uncivilized, primal unruly nature.

The Fool--Most capable of teaching crazy widom--examples: Jesus, Einstein, Lao-tzu, Darwin. These types seem to not go over so well in their own lifetime--they're ahead of their time. people often look down upon them while they're alive. Blake and Whitman would be another example.

Anyways, i think you're the jester of crazy wisdom.

Peter said...

Thanks for the lead on the book; it sounds right up my alley. I am glad you think I would be "The Jester." (I am reminded how the court jester in medieval times was the only one who could tell the king the truth, and not lose his head). But I also would like to think of myself as "The Fool," as it is my favorite Tarot card.

Radish King said...

1. Loudon, Instructions for Recalcitrant Patients
2. Loudon, Music for Piano, 4 Hands
3. Loudon, Breakfast with Clara
4. Loudon, Idiot Savant Caught by Surprise in a Lonely Time
5. Loudon, A Terrible Impatience with Creatureliness
6. Loudon, On the Delirious Track
7. Loudon, Vacuuming the House of God
8. Loudon, What She Found in the Night Garden
9. Loudon, Sicksong
10. Loudon, Wendy's Lament

I know, I know. But I don't understand all these other lists. Why aren't poets in love with their own work most of all? Maybe they are but are too polite to say so. These are the 10 poems I'd use to introduce myself. They're also mean the most to me, they are closest to who I am as a person and represent what poetry means to me in my life.

Peter said...

Rebecca: You are such a hottie; and your point is well taken. Why are we all so afraid of loving ourselves, our own work? Maybe because I enjoy reading other people's stuff so much more?Here's "my" My Ten (for today):

Fetus Papyraceous
First Crash Cesarean
What is Lost
The Boy Who Played with Dolls
Learning to Two-Step
In August My Sister
Damn Fag
The Devils Dictionary of Medical Terms
Holy Shit
October Journal

ooops, that's 11