Hello, I just found this site a week ago, and have been enjoying reading the posts in this forum. I'm curious to know about some of the regulars and visitors here. Are you teachers, writers, linguaphiles, simply poetry lovers (like myself)? Are you here to enrich your appreciation of poetry, learn something new, do research, debate?
Nice to meet you all!
I found this site about two weeks ago myself. I stayed when I found it because the people here seemed helpful, open (to debate sometime), knowledgeable and lively. I'd say everyone in this forum loves poetry. Many write remarkable poems, and most share strong insights into each other's poems and conversation.
For myself: I'm a retired college instructor, with a love of poetry that goes back a long way. My attitude towards reading and writing poetry generated a piece called “Poetry: Open to Interpretation” wherein I experimented with the controversy of how a poet's poems are made out of language in specific ways. In my case, the example was the poetry of Wallace Stevens and its mutual implication with the poet and his world. Tht site in all his poems leads me, forced by his language throughout his work, to "An Ordinary Evening in New Haven." If all I ever got anyone to do was to get her or him to read:
"The less legible meanings of sound, the little reds
Not often realized, the lighter words
In the heavy drum of speech. . .
These are the edging and inchings of final form,
The swarming activities of the formulae
Of statement, directly and indirectly getting at,
Like an evening evoking the spectrum of violet,
A philosopher practicing scales on his piano,
A woman writing a note and tearing it up.
It is not in the premise that reality
Is a solid. It may be a shade that traverses
A dust, a force that traverse a shade."
I’d have done alright. This forum has gotten me to read new poems with delight and humor, accept criticism of my own poems, write about 200 pages of longwinded responses, lose sleep, feel alive, interact with my peers again for the first time in ten years. I hope it does as much for you during the next week.
We are all dependent on the generosity of strangers.
Just a poetry lover - a middle-aged English housewife, who has collected poems she likes since the age of 14 and enjoys sharing them and discussing them, finding poems for people from the bits they can remember, and expanding my collection at the same time. Write the odd lighthearted poem myself occasionally, but with no real aspirations of publishing etc.
Peter, do you work for the Tennessee Williams Authority?
I'm sometimes surpised to be deceived into thinking I know what you said.
I've been here for a year or so and can't seem to get away. There are so many poetry groups, forums, sites on the internet but this one has kept my attention because it is about real poetry, and people who love poetry, not just people who want others to read their poetry. I am a sophomore college student, studying to be a high school english teacher. I've been married for 5 years and live in the mid-west USA. I love to write poetry and the only luck I've had with publishing is online webzines.
I'm here to make people laugh, and to annoy Les and Peter !
I'm a school lab tech who can't stand kids (got three of my own, last one in final year of school, eldest came home after college and won't leave) I don't write but I am opinionated. I also ask about the small but significant cultural differences between UK and the rest of you, like why do the singers always mangle the national anthem before sporting occasions. Kipling is my favourite poet (Do you like Kipling? I don't know I've never kipled. Boom Boom)
You'll get used to us.
Hi Melissa, and welcome.
I am a poetry lover, worse a poetry bore. I am a Brit living in the USA. I feel about being a teacher rather like Groucho Marx felt about clubs. I wouldn't want to teach in a school that would have me! I write a little. I ponder what Peter has said and I try to ignore Johnny.
Debate works for me. Wanna startsomething?
Stick around for a while. Things pick up at the end of summer. I'm a poetry lover and love to laugh. Many postings here help me do that. Don't pay total attention to Chesil. He is not a bore. I'm a retired teacher, and when I get REALLY drunk I miss it. There has been a lot of turnover at this site over the years I have been reading daily and contributing occasionally. When someone good goes, another shows up.
Hi Melissa, I'm with Glenda (not physically, philosophically). I'm a poetry writer, former teacher, and lover of language. I don't like to shoot the breeze just to hear myself talk, hence I spend more time on the USP than here. But my real love is helping young people on the Homework forum.
Welcome to e-mule, enjoy your stay.
I work in pre-press for a printing company in east Tennessee. I've enjoyed poetry most of my life and I write from time to time. Favorites include Poe, Longfellow, Sandburg, and Frost. This web site is exceptional in that there is a good mix of styles and opinions.
Because those famous stupid singers have to do stupid things in America to make money. Doesn't that make perfect sense?
Me? Well, I'm a retired Civil Servant, living in Kent, England. And I am a part-time student of creative writing at Canterbury University. I write some poems, for fun and for University. Oh, and I act as Moderator on emule, keeping the bad people at bay - you know, those who use obscenity and abuse and who try to undermine what is a pretty wonderful site.
We bad people fear you live people. I cannot, will not call even censorials evel frontword. Read the American Heritage Dictionary fron to back some cold night and see why some good people get livid at the thought of other good people thinking for them for not bowdelering (?) [That is so misspelled, even my spell checker is scratching his head] their text.. heaven save our Shakespeare -- Hamlet's on the tele now!--what they done to the play scene with Orphelia and Ham in the eighteen/nineteen centuries.
'undermine' --like word terroists?
Well, that siad, I'm sure you didn't mean us people that use ordinary lanuage in our woiks is really bad, huh?
Melissa, please ignore this diatribe, at least one of mykids have been arrested in public for using Constitutionally protected speech on the streets and in the halls of Amerika.
Peter, what does your last post have to do with introductions?
Les, I got sidetracked by the idea of being called bad for using the kind of language StephenFryer disagrees with. I'd rather have said it in a different context, but I'd have rather not have had to say it at all.
Telling people how not to talk keeps them from talking at all. If I'd listened to people who were offended by my earliest poetry, I'd have been stopped at my introduction to it. That if what it has to do with Melissa's fine open question.
I will not comment on this line of thought again, as it is always a waste of time.
Dr. Peter Neils Sherburn-Zimmer
Sorry, a bit touchy about "the bad people at bay - you know, those who use obscenity and abuse and who try to undermine..." You r experience deserves its own attention, withou my pique. My touchiness on this point, I guess, stem from them taking my pencil and paper away from me when they had me locked up.
Again, the flow of tales here of how people started with poetry writing does not need the kind of distration I must have seemed in response to your posting.
OK, Peter, we'll have to agree to disagree on the need for any form of moderation, on this site or in the world at large.
On this site, I use the lightest of touches, a feather is heavy next to me!
Marian NYC put it best when she said we can use the c word for female anatomy when we're discussing a poem with that word in it, but we can't go around calling each other that.
c word, huh? I wonder what that can be. Wait, I got it! An old joke:
"At your cervix, madam," he said as he entered.
"Dilated to meet you, sir," she responded.
Not that I would ever call anyone a cervix, obviously.
Zounds good, StephenFryer. Hey Hugh, when was Zounds verbotin?
Thanks, for the explanation Peter. I'm in the habit of always viewing this and other threads in the "flat view" mode. When I switched to "threaded view", I could see that you were responding to Stephen's post which makes sense to me now. Sorry for my misunderstanding.
Moderation in all things!
I suspect it was equally my misuncerstanding [sic misunderstanding]. Please remember, I really am new to all of this, which does not warrant my jumping on StephenFryer.
I'm here to read th' om's o th' other 'Oats. sumer times to talk wi' 'em, an Sumer thymes jus' to listen.
peter, if i may ejacualte into the conversation here, you only call an answering cervix
actually i meant those who Cant Understand Normal Things
Hugh, fricken hilarious:
"At your cervix, madam," he said as he entered.
"Dilated to meet you, sir," she responded.
And Johnny you are soooooo bad, I'm laughing my arse off!
Melissa, Hi, I'm Gwydion and I'm in the 11 step program on how to write poetry...at this moment I'm on step 15, things aren't going well I'm afraid.
It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. (Aristotle)
I really really really wanted to use Johnny No-Ass as my screen name, but thought it'd be banned or whatever, so I didnt
I enjoy finding out what people do, where they live, how they describe themselves -- especially if I've been reading their posts for a while, knowing nothing except their chosen screen name. I've been on vacation, so here is my belated introduction.
I'm a should-have-been director and playwright with a Day Job that leaves me enough spare time to come to this Forum to show off. (I'm also a should-have-been teacher-preacher and the Forum is my surrogate lecturn.) I'm 46, Jewish, an "ethnic New Yorker" raised in New Mexico and finally returned to my homeland. And as Chesil knows too well, I'm always up for a fight.
Hey, leave me alone. I have been good lately.
I know this is a dead issue, and not worth more comment, but I feel compelled to come to Stephen's defense. (Did I get that apostrophe right?)
Anyway, it would be a mistake to assume that Stephen is some self-appointed do-gooder here to protect us from ourselves. To the best of my knowledge there are no "banned" words. Everyone here understands that even the coarsest language has a time and place. A while ago we had a rash of childish, inappropriate drivvel.
Things like: "I can say F#CK if I wanna, so F#CK F#CK F#CK F#CK F#CK"
It got old REAL quick. I just read the 'Jehovah' thread over on USP. Some well placed profanity in there. Nobody minds the language in context. Or if they do they can PISS OFF!
Let's see what Stephen does with that. (I self-censored the original F#CKs, not Stephen)
There were also some BAD bad people who told deliberate lies to confuse newbies and posted them in other people's names. Language is one thing, lies is another. :-(
But Stephen protects us from them. :-)
You don't look fat in that dress
Linda, you mean there are such things as a bad lie OUTSIDE of the golf course?
Not sure, its a bad leave on a croquet lawn.
an oboe is an ill wind that nobody blows good
Jack, I would NEVER presume to moderate YOUR language.
Now, if you would just bend over this desk, young man ...
I haven't replied yet, cause I have no idea how to define myself. I am reading a lot here lately, I don't reply so much, simply because I don't have much time.
I live in greece at the moment, but am from Amsterdam. Used to study english literature, am now absorbed in more technical texts as a translator. I also work parttime as a secretary/pr manager/ system administrator, etc, etc in a synagogue. I am not jewish by the way.
I still hang around, because I am hopelessly attached to the people on this forum (and I also like poetry of course). Stumbled on it once, asked a question for an essay, never got an answer (and I have given you guys plenty of time to reply!), but was addicted within no time.
What are your first impressions?
What was the question? Now we've had time to think we've forgotten.
I'm a retired senior systems' manager who, to my surprise, is making a rather decent living as a freelance magazine writer. I'm also a part-time substitute teacher at the middle school level who usually only accepts assignments in English classes (I have to put that English Lit. degree to some valid use!).
I occasionally post a poem in the USP but I'm more prone to commenting in the General Discussion section, especially when Hugh has been at it.
I've been inspired by many of the regulars here and I especially appreciate the yeoman-like work that Stephen does in keeping the place tidy.
Les took the time to point me to the introductions thread. It's only fitting I take the time to add something in. And having smiled and laughed in reading your humourous additions above, sagely nodding in response to the more serious notes -- and sometimes both nodding and laughing -- I can only hope I do the intro thread justice.
I found this site searching for commentary on Sara Teasdale, an American turn-of-the-century poet. That's the previous century, the 1900's. Amusingly, now we're all turn-of the-century, and it's not quite so long ago as it was when I was growing up!
So why Sara, you ask? She's always been a favourite poet. I think writers like her got swamped by the more academic poets of that era, those who spent far more time writing with obscure quotes and sophisticated (and equally obscure) literary references, as opposed to her more immediate, experiential style of writing. I think she has been somewhat overlooked, though it seems like more and more people are discovering her. I find her poems very attainable, when I can find them, and when I can find the time to read them. I've spent a lot of time hunting down old copies of her books, poking through old book stores, so I guess it's something of a hobby, too, as if one needs an excuse to go into an old bookstore.
One of my greatest disappointments was ordering a copy of her collected works. Hard copy, library binding, acid free paper, thank you Amazon, sorta. It was too easy. I didn't realize the hunt was half the fun. So I've kept looking for the volumes anyways.
And I suppose it's a hobby that's come to browsing the internet, too. Why that particular night? Are we allowed honesty on this site? I suppose I was reminiscing about someone I once loved and shared her poems with, to be honest. It was no doubt a late and sleepless night.
So I found a link to eMule, and followed it here. Read comments. Browsed the site.
I recall I was especially impressed by the "Homework" and "Lost Poetry" forums, and the well reasoned replies there. Cross referenced within the threads, even! Aside from displaying some good civic values and a unique addition to the web, those postings were like brain-teasers with a poetry theme. I liked the challenge and how they made me think. And since I've been in that half-remembering state -- what was that poem again? what did it mean? -- I had some sympathy for the people posting help requests. So I guess I was hooked, and started lurking the forums.
As for the non-eMule side of my life. Hmm. I'd say an amateur sophisticate. Love reading, but have a terrible time remembering authors' names. The same with film. A big-city holiday goer (must have art galleries!), but who grew up in small towns with lots of time spent in the outdoors. Studied psychology up to the graduate level, and ended up doing addiction research for a time, before moving into statistics and marketing research. Write poems, but rarely share them. A soft spot for translated poems (esp. Neruda, Akhmitova, Tsvetaeva, and Szymborska), I suppose because meaning is not about the words, but what's behind the words, so the language sort of doesn't really matter. It's the puzzling out between the lines that counts.
And isn't that the challenge even when you're just speaking English?
There. I'm introduced.
A semi retired designer, paralegal here; Pelham Bay, Bronx, NY; published MUSEUM OF DREAMS, Poems by Roger Granit; write poetry and prose for my own amusement - and, believe me, I am amused. You will often find me a provocateur when questionable ethics, bias, discrimination, religion, theology, philosophy, or language ticks me off - and that is often. I used to own poetics.net (present owners :-( run a poetry contest site - not recomended), a comprehensive poetry site until my reorder of the domain name got fouled. Work on the site development goes on, and hopefully, it will be resurected in a much expanded form.
emule is my favorite corner of the Web, surely it will be yours; more fun than a barrel of Hugh Clarys - OMG...! it is a barell of Hugh Clarys!!!
Elliot, definitely post some of what you write, We wish to be amused !
"We wish to be amused!" ? We?
There's an old joke... "What do you mean 'we', kimosabe?"
I'd rather read Hugh's poetry than post my own. But how about, if you (we?) post some of "yorn", I'll post some of mine. You do write poetry, don't you JohnnySansCulo?
(What I'd prefer to do is private e-mails betwixt other writers.)
Yes, it's over on user-submitted forum