I remember falling in love with poetry while reading ee cummings and Shakespeare and Keats over and over again, to really understand the poets and there poetry or just interpret it, over many chais with my teacher and friends. We spent days on one poem, digesting it. Spending hours sitting next to the river, mulling over each verse.
Before that, in school, words had just passed through me. They were just words, thrown at me in a strange language. I had no time to take them in slowly, I had to move over to the next one in my course, only to vomit out everything the next day in my exam.
Tonight took me back to such memories. I was excited to share all of my favourite poems, although, after a while, I felt like one of those people who like the sound of their own voices! I enjoyed sharing them with everyone, but I wish I had talked about them a little more. That I had shared the experiences that went with each one of them.
I enjoyed listening to other’s, too. But I did feel, again, that words were just thrown at me and I had no time to tie them and slowly take them in. I realize I was doing the same to others too.
Poetry, I now understand, is not about the recitation or the rhyming. It is about experiencing.
It was, however, heart warming to see a lot of enthusiasts turning up to share their verses. To find so many people could string their thoughts, so well, into poems. Even that few people generally hanging out at the café also decided to join in.
Still, tonight was important. For many met many new people, many got the space to voice themselves through their own words or another’s and we all transformed a “public” space into a very warm, intimate space, close enough for energies, thoughts and feelings to connect.