Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Countless Beautiful Things: 03/11-18/08: Adrienne, Poetry, Music, Life and Death

1. Adrienne extended her visit by a week and it's been wonderful having her home again.

2. When I assign my students Japanese and Chinese poetry of the early centuries A.D., I always wonder how it will go. For starters, many students find poetry difficult and I always wonder if this ancient poetry will just seem too remote. A majority of my students loved it. Honestly, when my Survey of World Literature students love this poetry it's among the most gratifying experiences I have as an instructor. I find this poetry wise, elegant, witty, irreverent (at times), and philosophically satisfying and when other students do, too, I enjoy feeling the bond of enjoyment.

3. My WR 122 students all do a presentation of music they love at the end of class and write a short essay bringing us into their experience with this music. Their tastes in music is remarkably eclectic: Tool, Carrie Underwood, System of a Down, Dave Brubeck, The Proclaimers, Jennifer Lopez and Mark Anthony, Bob Marley, Kenny Chesney, Radiohead, Tom Waits, Lynard Skynard, AC/DC, The Asylum Street Spankers, The Statler Brothers, to name a few, and their experiences with this music range from driving eleven year boys to a baseball tournament in Lincoln City to a daughter calling a octopus tentacles testicles to the challenges to a young marriage of moving from Springfield, OR to Orange, CA. My students and I hear music we normally wouldn't listen to and learn a great deal more about each other.

4. My 10:00 class demanded that I write a music project essay and I wrote about the euphoric experience of being gently rocked between life and death while in the hospital with meningitis in 1999 and how music by The Oysterband brings back memories of that mortal and mystical time.

That's all for now. My life over the last week has been and will continue to be dominated by paper grading. Maybe I assign to much writing for my students. Maybe I have too many students. I don't know! But, I have a lot of work to do and I'd better get back to it.

I'll be back here soon.


kurt said...

All poems should be irreverent
And if they’re not they’d better get
Cause life’s too long for pious sorts
And poems are too short.

You are a great teacher and I admire your equal affection to both read and lecture.

JBelle said...

enybuddy here seen Raymond Pert?