In his new book Why Poetry, the poet Matthew Zapruder has issued “an impassioned call for a return to reading poetry and an incisive argument for its accessibility to all readers.” The poet Robert Hass says, “Zapruder on poetry is pure pleasure. His prose is so direct that you have the impression, sentence by sentence, that you are being told simple things about a simple subject and by the end of each essay you come to understand that you’ve been on a very rich, very subtle tour of what’s aesthetically and psychologically amazing about the art of poetry.”
In this episode, Matthew Zapruder joins Jacke for a discussion on why poetry is often misunderstood, and how readers can clear away the misconceptions and return to an appreciation for the charms and power of poetry. Along the way, they discuss poems by W.H. Auden, Brenda Hillman, and John Keats, and the views of critics like Harold Bloom, Giambattista Vico, Ludwig Wittgenstein, and Paul Valery.
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One thought on “History of Literature Episode #138 – Why Poetry (with Matthew Zapruder)”
Freedom and play. Process. Yes. “It’s very important that poets permit themselves that relationship to words.”
I have also lyricised prose, but only when it suits me, as Matthew said.
The only words I would change in what he said would be this: He said something about the space you need to be in to write a poem–I would say for me it is more the space I find myself in.
“It’s not something you control, it is something you discover.”