March 6, 2019, by Sunita Tailor
The Power of Poetry
This blog was written by second year English with Creative Writing student, Holly Humphreys.
Emily Dickinson once said “If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold no fire can warm me, I know that it is poetry.” I think about this quote a lot. Poetry can be many things – evocative, comforting, entertaining – and yet I believe it is sorely underappreciated outside of academic contexts, and sometimes even within academic contexts. People are often caught off guard when they ask for my favourite book and I give them the name of a poetry book before saying ‘my favourite novel, however…’ (forgive me for being pedantic). Similarly, I have many friends who love to read but struggle to name a poem that they like.
Many people think of poetry in its traditional formats – haikus, sonnets, and the like – but there is so much more poetry out there waiting to be discovered, and in forms other than just written on a page. Instagram poets (poets such as Trista Mateer who post pictures of short pieces of writing often accompanied by illustrations) are becoming more mainstream, plus this is a fun and accessible way of engaging with and creating poetry. Slam poetry and spoken word are also great if you prefer performance over paper and there are loads of open mic events going on in Nottingham throughout the year. Poetry can also be combined with digital media such as photography and filmmaking.
Poetry is an exciting way to express yourself and to connect with other people, and there is so much scope for experimentation. If I find a short poem that I really love I always try and memorise it. This is not only good exercise for your brain – it also allows you to carry a little piece of art inside you wherever you go.