Once, someone asked R.P Warren how a poem grows. He wisely answered, ‘It grows out of your own life.’ Experiences of life can be sometimes pleasant and sometimes bitter. For ordinary people, such experiences are depicted through their facial expressions, actions, present life, or perhaps through their quietness, but for poets words are the only resort to depict what actually they have been through! I was never into poetry until my college life, as the exasperating summaries, monotonous paraphrasing and, yeah, the dreadful grades I always used to win in the English verse section, made me fear the poets and their poetry! Thanks to my hostel life and a roommate of mine who both contributed a lot in changing my views about this incomparable part of English language. Frankly speaking, the hostel life made me discover this hidden part of me, as for every spare moment I had, I used to indulge myself in the literary books of my roommate. Contrary to what actually I had been studying (still studying :P), poetry was totally a new and exciting world for me with amazing horizons and depths. And the journey continued, with a little change - now I also have started penning my own thoughts and feelings, in all the precious moments which I find for my own self.
Well, to achieve something or at least, to learn something, I believe that many countless factors do contribute. And if I say that, the poetry of only a single poet has mesmerised me the most, then it would not only be unfair to my mentors but also to my own self. To name a few, I would honourably recall some names whose extraordinary poetic pieces are worth reading time and again. Robert Browning, the one who turned out to be the very first poet whose work I read, is surely one of my favourites. The collection which I read, titled as ‘Men and Women’, dedicated to Browning’s wife, Elizabeth Barrette; comprised some wonderful poetic pieces, which left me in a trance for so many days. Emily Dickinson is the most favourite poet of mine. Her poetry revolves completely around great intensity of mind, which I think is the main essence of poetry. Although, she did not get a chance to mingle with the outside world that much, the thoughts about life, faith and death which are reflected in her poetry are extremely contemplative. John Keats is another name, which I would like to mention. Romantic poetry could have been revolutionised, only if Keats had lived a little longer. Pablo Neruda, Edward Lowbury and of course Robert Frost are also the ones I have admired many a time, and whose rich and evergreen work is worth reading again and again! Robert Frost, once rightly said: ‘Poetry is when emotions find thoughts and thoughts find words’; keeping in view Frost’s words, I relish my own thoughts and comfort my own emotions, just by reading lines like these:
O then, on the shore, of the wide world I stand alone…
And think till love and fame to nothingness do sink!