Workshop Poetry

October 3, 2010

I’m not sure about anyone else, but I feel their is a huge difference in the poetry that we read in our literature classes from famous poets, and those we read from students who have just finished their MFA. Prof. Scanlon titles this poetry “workshop poetry” and I believe rightly so. While reading the first part of John Pineda’s book “The Translator’s Diary” I was very aware of the difference between his and the other poetry that we’ve read so far. If the book hadn’t been organized and titled, I might greatly have been confused as to what the poet was even talking about–a coma. The poem’s flow well together, but if they were published separately they would lose much of their weight. I am currently working on an independent study that revolves around a series of poems that speak to one another, and so am very invested in the issue of whether or not a poem stands on its own  like the series of sonnets that we read part of by Gwendolyn Brooks “The Womanhood.” Each of these sonnets can stand in solitude, yet when read together they delve deeper into Brooks’ intended overarching themes. I do not think that Pineda’s poetry does the same.

Anyone care to agree or disagree?

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