Thursday, June 18, 2009

Last week I returned home from a mid-career university teacher's colloquy with lots of ideas and inspiration about teaching college students. After 11 years and tenure behind me now, I was in need of renewal. I learned many things from the other 12 colleagues in the colloquy including books to read, teaching ideas for the most difficult situations, and sanity tips for living a balanced life. One friend mentioned that she is reading a poem each day on the government link for poetry. She shared a terrific Billy Collins poem and now I am hooked. If you enjoy listening to poetry why not treat yourself to a few minutes every morning? This is what I listen to every morning before I start my work: The Writers' Almanac

Here is the poem:

"Introduction to Poetry," by Billy Collins

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide

or press an ear against its hive.

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,

or walk inside the poem's room
and feel the walls for the light switch.

I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author's name on the shore.

But all they want to do
is tie a poem to a chair with a rope
and torture a confession out of it.

They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.

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