Monday, October 15

because poetry.

there's a scene in John Green's latest book, Turtles All The Way Down, where two teenagers sit next to an outdoor in-ground pool and the young man's simple bits of poetry, spoken off-the-cuff under the stars, seem to successfully unseat the young woman's (the protagonist's) spiraling, paralyzing anxiety.

it was a very lovely scene. and it made me think back to a headline I'd seen just a day or so earlier: "How Doctors Use Poetry."

upon first clicking that link to that headline, I read as far down as these few lines:
"...reciting poetry engages the primary reward circuitry in the brain, called the mesolimbic pathway. So does music—but, the researchers found, poetry elicited a unique response. While the mechanism is unclear, it’s been suggested that poetic, musical, and other nonpharmacologic adjuvant therapies can reduce pain..."
and then, a week or so later, I finally came back to read the whole thing. and eventually look up the cognitive neuroscience study the author references. I wanted to blog about this. because poetry.

because the idea of communication beyond the 'restricted' language of 'science' is interesting. because feelings and power and pathos and transformation feel important.

perhaps something about this time of year makes poetry feel especially necessary. seasons changing. colder, darker times pressing in upon us. stresses of the semester intensifying...

I often think I should read and savor more poetry more regularly. but sometimes it doesn't seem accessible or convenient. making space for poems isn't always easy.

our lovely local poets here at NSU have offered me an excuse for savoring plenty of poetry lately though. they're participating in a month-long poetry marathon to support a small indie non-profit literary press. one poem every day, for almost all of October. I like it. maybe there's something about knowing that poems have been written under a time constraint that makes them especially delicious and interesting.

almost all of these poems evoke some kind of emotion. some ask more patience of me than others. I like the ones that make me feel pried open, or guided dot by dot around a gallery of newness, or plunged into a deep ocean.

all the poems of the 30/30 poetry-fest are on one webpage, which makes it difficult to send you to the ones I like the most. you'll have to search a little bit for them. some of my favourites so far:
  • A Study in Time and Space / by Rebecca Macijeski
  • God owns a carwash in Iowa / by Ally Schwam
  • Two Heads / by Karen Greenbaum-Maya
  • Camelot’s Redemption / by Chad W. Lutz
  • If I could make this easy / by Jen Stewart Fueston

and there are still 15 more days of poems to be written! if you're into it, you can donate to the press and incentivize our lovely local poets this month, here and/or here.

more poetries, previously:
also, all of this poetical literary mashup film by Yulin Huang is very cool.

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