This class has definitely challenged me more than most as poetry and my analysis of it has never been my strong suit. I think I have grown at least somewhat over the course of this class. At the beginning of the class I was pretty negative about the whole experience because I just did not like poetry and I was only taking it because I need it for an English minor. However, I realize that I like poetry more than I thought I did once I stopped thinking about it in the conventional manor. I love spoken word and, on occasion, I do listen to rap. It’s just the poetry that is often taught in class that I see as difficult to understand and enjoy. That being said, I think once I realized this, I utilized my interests to the best of my ability. I went to a spoken word event for one of our papers which made writing that one much more enjoyable in addition to enjoying the poetry event itself.
One paper I look at specifically as one of my weakest would be the very first paper we wrote. I think every English teacher is different and is looking for different things when they are grading papers so I did not really know what to expect. After this paper, I looked to your comments and tried to improve on the next paper. Although I only made a B on this paper, I still see it as a step up. When going into the pastoral paper, I tried to pick out more specifics because that was something I had glanced over on the sonnet paper I had first written. Even though picking out specifics ultimately led me into repetition, I think it was still a much better paper and I was proud of the work I put into it.
Most of my issue when it comes to poetry is that I just really do not understand it. I can read a poem over and over and, if it is not just blatant, then I will likely never understand the meaning until someone tells me. This is mostly the reason why I was never too keen on it to begin with. However, I think the class helped a bit when it comes to my analysis and comprehension of poetry although I think there could be more time spent on those two ideas before diving straight into the poems. If you do not understand what the poem is saying or do not know how to properly read it, it isn’t going to mean much in the end. But I do think that I have improved quite a bit over this semester and that has made me enjoy poetry as a whole a lot more. This class has definitely influenced my approach in other classes too because it has helped me to think more critically and look at things in a different light.
Overall, I have enjoyed being in this class. Although I probably found it more challenging than others, I feel like that is why it is worthwhile. I won’t necessarily make the grade I had hoped but it has shaped me as a student and has impacted the way I view works of art.