Take back your right to enjoy poetry. The fact that some poetry is harder to understand than other poetry just begs the question. Some flowers are harder to appreciate than others. Who's going to tell you to stop looking at flowers unless you have a naturalist on your elbow?
Poetry is as common as flowers, as friendship, as loss, as evil, as good. At the most crucial or difficult times in our lives, we always turn to poetry. Funerals are pure poetry. But why wait for a funeral?
Every poem is a made object that is very inexpensive and there for the taking. Take back your right to it! Surround yourself with these made objects. Devote a bookshelf to them. Best of all, keep a small store of them in your memory, to enjoy any time and any place.
Let the ones that speak truth to you survive and let the rest become extinct. If you and I don't take advantage of this basic human privilege and pleasure, the little poems that speak lies to us will be the only ones to survive, and the ones that offer us hope will become extinct.
- Copyright 1994, by Sidney Hall, Jr.