I have chosen to be in a group for our second literature slam that consists of the following people: Nabila Uddin, Katie Aikins, Linda Fondrk, and Se-Ann Williams. We have met several times and have finally decided after long deliberations that we would like to do what is called The Spoon River Anthropology by Edgar Lee Masters. The poems that we have all chose were published in the year 1916. The group chose five individual poems and one group poem to present to the entire class. The following short poems will be presented by my group members.
1. The Hill (This poem will be done by the entire group. It is a longer poem and we decided that it would be something different to use all of our abilities to present the poem in five different ways. We are just hoping that it all goes well!!)
2. Sarah Brown (Linda Fondrk)
3. Ollie McGee (Se-Ann Williams)
4. Fletcher McGee (Melissa Hagg)
Written By: Edgar Lee Masters (1868-1950)
First Published: Spoon River Anthropology, 1916. The MacMillan Company: New York.
5. Robert Fulton Tanner (Katie Aikins)
6. Cassius Hueffer (Nabila Uddin)
We had the hardest time as a group deciding which poem we would like to present together. I wondered exactly why this was but after evaluating the individuals in my group I decided that we all had a personal type of poem that we all favored more than others. After discovering this, we all decided that the poem “The Hill” was the most appropriate because it allowed for different interpretations as well as various areas for personal creativity. I really believe that it is a poem that will definitely catch the audience’s attention but at the same time satisfy the group as a whole.
I chose this poem, Fletcher McGee, because I really believe that this is one of the best works that Edgar Lee Masters had in the Spoon River Anthropology. The poem really captured my attention with the descriptions of how the lady captured his love and then with the climax, which to me was when he begins to show the twist that love can have on an individual. I like how Edgar Lee Masters in my opinion used this poem to show the different levels of love. I also favor this poem because Edgar Lee Masters showed that love is not always so picturesque.
When preparing both my personal poem as well as my part of the group poem, I genuinely wanted to make my last performance very memorable. I mean this both by the way I present as well as the interpretation. For my individual poem, I decided to look up two words that I was unfamiliar with and did not allow me to fully comprehend the poem. The two words were pensive and saps. I took it upon myself to look up these two words and then I feel I was able to put the puzzle together into the interpretation that I have mentioned above. From an online dictionary, I found that pensive actually can be interpreted into thinking in a quiet way, often with a serious expression on your face. I found this allowed me to show the change in the poem from that of a love that was not necessarily so perfect as the beginning of the poem explains. The other word that I had difficulty with was saps and I learned that this word means to weaken someone or take away strength or an important quality from someone, especially over a long period of time. I also found that in practicing this poem that it seemed to be more beneficial to vary my voice to show exactly where I feel the author wanted it to take upon a new meaning in terms of context.
For the group poem, I have around seven stanzas to present. In my part of the poem, the author is explaining the fate of several individuals mentioned in the previous stanzas. I was surprised at how the different individuals are actually at such drastic levels in their life. I decided to portray this through different vocal tones as well as body movements. The one word in my part of the poem that I researched and found to be crucial in terms of evaluating the meaning was brothel. I found that brothel is actually in reference to a place where men go and pay to have sex with prostitutes.
My goal in both of these poems is to have my audience really enjoy these poems like I have as well as my group. I would love to have comments on what you feel after reading my blog entry and I hope if you are my classmate that you truly enjoy our part of the literature slam!!