Find a poem! Show up! Read a poem! Discuss a poem!

Join us Tuesday, March 6, 5:30 – 6:30 pm at St. Agnes Branch Library, 444 Amsterdam Ave. at 81st St. for the theme of Poetry and Enjambment

Sometimes we like to choose a theme that teaches us something about poetry. Recently we looked at poetry and punctuation, and since then we’ve noticed that we are paying more attention to how punctuation is used in poetry. And now for March we’ll explore enjambment, a technique where one poetic line moves to the next, without punctuation at the end of the line; it is the opposite of an end-stopped line. Enjambment creates tension as we are used to pausing at the end of poetic lines, and yet we must read on to the next line in order to complete the sentence or thought. Homer used enjambment as did John Milton in Paradise Lost, calling it “sense variously drawn out from one verse into another.” The start of T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land uses enjambment in lines 1, 2, 3, 5, and 6, and end stops in lines 4 and 7:

April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
Winter kept us warm, covering
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
A little life with dried tubers.

In the ten enjambed lines of “Between Walls” by William Carlos Williams, the poet forces us to both speed up to complete the thoughts, and slow down to consider words at the end of lines:

The back wings
of the

hospital where
nothing

will grow lie
cinders

in which shine
the broken

pieces of a green
bottle

In rereading our blog post before hitting the “publish” button, I’m intrigued with the line endings of Eliot’s The Waste Land. Taken together, the last words make up a little rhythmical chant poem of their own:

Breeding, mixing, stirring, rain.
Covering, feeding, tubers.

Blog your thoughts on the poems you find here, or post an enjambed poem of your choice and say why you like it.

 

Please blog with us here at onepagepoetrycircle.wordpress.com. If you know someone who might be interested in our program, please pass this on. And like us on Facebook!

The One Page Poetry Circle is sponsored by the New York Public Library and is open to all. St. Agnes Branch Library is handicap accessible.

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