To Stephen Pentz, http://firstknownwhenlost.blogspot.com/
I was searching for a poem by Louis MacNeice, "Selva Oscura" when I come across an amazing blog of poetry in which many poems are posted with few lines in comment on them and their meaning. Being that passionate about anything related to poetry, I kept browsing the blog and its informative posts and it hits me: how come i have never done that before?
The blog is not maintained by poetry professor, nor by some critic; Stephen Pentz, the blogger, is actually a retired attorney who sounds well-read in modern poetry. What actually made me wonder while i browse his blog is that how come in my blog I never thought of doing the same? Why I waste my posts on ramblings over what happens with me, which, let's face it, is not that much or unusual, and I can't even talk about it in clear terms, and had always to hide it!! If i don't want to talk about my life, then I should not rather than confuse whoever reads my posts with obscurities to protect my privacy.
Poetry has been always close to my heart; it never fails to express me, whether it is written by me or by someone else. The words I read in a poem feel like wings carrying me light to another world: crystal clear world where I can see truth, about me and others. However, I failed to pay poetry its due; for I never commit myself to writing the way I should be if I want to evolve as a poet, nor I commit myself to poetry studying if I really want to be expert critic. Even when it comes to the simple activity of reading poetry, which is essential to anyone who dreams of being a poet or a critic, or even a poetry teacher, even this simple activity couldn't find enough attention with me. I lagged behind my reading, writing and study, indulged in self-pity, and remorse over spilled milk, fears of future that hasn't come yet and a tomorrow that no one has a guarantee for.
But this blog enlightened me to what I need to do, to channel my emotions in a favorite river: poetry, and let it speak for me. I have read many poems that touched me with its universality, and depth of meaning that no matter what are the circumstances surrounding its writing in the first place, these poems have evolved into a life of their own, a life that can relate to its readers' perception of their words.
Is this a New Year resolution? Or another task that I try to keep myself distracted with? I really can't tell now, but all I can say that I have found something to fill in a long-time blank hole inside, and it is just about time to be occupied with something fruitful.
Nadia F. Mohammed