Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Stick It to the Poetry Professor

Towards the beginning of this semester, I wanted to add a "writing poetry" class. Since the semester had already started, I had to contact the instructor in order to add the class. I received an email telling me that I would be able to add the class on these conditions:

That I was aware that this class was an INTERMEDIATE poetry writing class. That I regularly read contemporary poetry in collections or anthologies, and that I have written 5 or 6 poems that a published poet or professor of poetry deem to be "promising." Also, I would need to be able to recognize imagery and help other students recognize if the images and poetic devices in their poetry work or not. If I was not up to this level, I would find this class VERY difficult.

Wow. I like to write poetry. But that was about all the qualification I could claim. I was discouraged; I have taken a basic creative writing class from BYU, which I really enjoyed, so I was excited to be able to further my interest. But apparently, there is a jump from basic creative writing to the official "writing poetry" class that I wasn't aware of and I don't know how to make. At first, I thought of just bagging the whole poetry idea - I mean, I don't have to have credentials in order to write poetry, right? But as I kept thinking, I enjoy it enough that I would really love the opportunity to continue learning. So whether it kills me or not, I WILL be taking that poetry class at some point. Take that, Professor Susan Howe.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Shocking Lack of Prose

After a good amount of time as a mainly poetry blog, I decided that what it lacks is a little less melodrama and a little more of my life. I will be posting the occasional poem, but I want to be able to write more about what is happening in my everyday life. So..... here you go!

My first topic of conversation is this:

I am currently enrolled as a student at Brigham Young University. I am an English major, due to my love of literature. Although it seems like I'm a forever student, there is finally a light at the end of the university tunnel - I am a senior, and I should be graduating sometime next year. Yay life!

With the start of classes this semester, I enrolled in an English Grammar class, mainly because I was exploring the idea of doing an Editing minor. After less than two weeks of class, I am sure it will become the bane of my existence. Let me explain by first giving you an exert from the preface of my "Grammar for Grammarians" book: "Grammar for Grammarians covers four distinct approaches to English grammar. Prescriptive grammar emphasizes questions of usage. Descriptive grammar categorizes the parts of speech and sentence types in English. Generative grammar attempts to discover more abstract underlying regularities in syntax that apply to all languages. And contextual grammar explores the way that sentences and larger texts are actually processed by readers and listeners..." Falling asleep yet? At this point, the course content has failed to intrigue me, and the only redeeming quality is that the professor is entertainingly crazy and reminds me of Dwight Schrute. And who knows? After parsing sentences for a whole semester, I might actually be converted. But it's not looking promising!

Good thing I have my 6 credit Transcontinental Literary History class to save me. :)