Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Wednesday Words: Looking at Lyrics

With April being National Poetry Month, I've been trying to think of a way to make poetry interesting. It's interesting to me that poetry seems to be one of the most polarizing types of literature: people either LOVE it or HATE it - rarely do people admit to falling in between.

I do, though. I know that. I enjoy some poetry, I'm picky about it (at least I can admit it), and I can only take reading it in small doses otherwise I stop looking at the bigger picture. I'll be reading but not letting it sink in, which is the whole point. (Personal favorites of mine are Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, John Donne, Shakespeare's sonnets, and Pablo Neruda.)

But then I was struck with inspiration yesterday when I got the new cd of one of my favorite musicians, Eric Hutchinson. One of the reasons I love his songs so much is of course the musical stylings - his songs are upbeat, generally happy, and you can't help sing along. Which got me really paying attention to what I was singing - Eric writes completely brilliant lyrics.

How does it link to poetry? Because to me, song lyrics absolutely qualify as poetry. Both are comprised of lines that when put together paint a picture and make a story. Well written poetry and songs both have something bigger going on beneath the surface. Both are able to inspire or make us laugh or cry or think or just FEEL something more.

And it blows me away every single time.

So during this National Poetry Month, I urge you to give poetry a try if you haven't lately, or to at least think about the lyrics to the songs you sing along to. You may be surprised at what your favorite songs are actually about. And please leave comments about poets/musicians you like whose words you particularly like! I'm always up for trying new things.

And I want to close with the chorus to one of Eric's songs that seems to describe me perfectly (and makes me laugh every time) from his song "I'm Not Cool":

I'm not cool
And nobody would want me that way
I'm just a regular guy
In an insane world
Don't worry 'bout me
I'll be okay

Comments welcome and as always, happy reading!

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