Saturday, June 25, 2005

Is Poetry Dead?

How do we pass our appreciation of poetry to the next generation?

If someone (your kids) think poetry is boring, sissy, archaic, or whatever, introduce them to it through their normal channels.

Say, if your kids are into video games. Choose one (maybe a fantasy/adventure or RPG like Myst) that employs poetry.

If they like rock music, pick a good song and discuss with them what the lyrics mean, and why it's great poetry (Queen, or Pink Floyd, for example, has some great poetry in their lyrics)...

Somebody to Love by Queen:

Can anybody find me somebody to love?
Each morning I get up I die a little
Can barely stand on my feet
Take a look in the mirror and cry
Lord what you're doing to me
I have spent all my years in believing you
But I just can't get no relief, Lord!
Somebody, somebody
Can anybody find me somebody to love?

I work hard every day of my life
I work till I ache my bones
At the end I take home my hard earned pay all on my own -
I get down on my knees
And I start to pray
Till the tears run down from my eyes
Lord - somebody - somebody
Can anybody find me - somebody to love?

Introduce your kids to poetry through some other venues and cultural events, such as opera, musicals, plays, even movies. Frex, Nessun Dorma is very familiar, haunting song (even a Metal band sang it), and the lyrics is very poetic:


Nessun Dorma by Puccini:

Nessun dorma!
Nessun dorma!
***Tu pure, o PrincipeSSA,***
Nella tua fredda stanza guardi le stelle,
Che tremano d'amore e di speranza!

Ma il mio mistero è chiuso in me,
Il nome mio nessun saprà!
No, no, sulla tua bocca lo dirò,
Quando la luce splenderà!


Ed il mio bacio scioglierà.
**Il silenzio che ti fa miA!**


[Choir:]
Il nome suo nessun saprà!
E noi dovrem ahimè morir, morir!


Dilegua o notte!
Tramontate, stelle!
Tramontate, stelle!
All' alba vincerò!
Vincerò! Vincerò!


Translation:

No-one shall sleep!
No-one shall sleep!
You too, oh Prince,
In your cold room, watch the stars
Trembling with love and hope!


But my secret lies hidden within me,
No-one shall discover my name!
Oh no, I will only reveal it on your lips
When daylight shines forth!


And my kiss shall break
The silence that makes you mine!


[Choir:]
No-one shall discover her name!
And we will, alas, have to die, to die!

Depart, oh night!
Set, you stars!
Set, you stars!
At dawn I shall win!
I shall win! I shall win!

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