“ok clever clogs, what’s your definition of poetry”
She really shouldn’t have
I drew a deep breath, took the floor, drew myself upright, and then began:
Poetry, my dear
Is anything I fucking well want it to be, that is
Whenever I am
Writing poetry, or
Reading poetry, or
Listening to poetry, or
Reciting poetry, or
Touching poetry, or
Feeling poetry, or
“Hang on” interrupted she, also known as the intellectual one
“How do you ‘touch’ poetry”
So now I’m in the driving seat for I know she knows fucking nothing of sculpture
I recite Tennyson’s ‘crannies’ poem from the plaque on his statue, outside Lincoln cathedral, I recite it in its entirety
"And how does that explain ‘touching' says the intellectual one, looking far too pleased with herself"
"Well" says I, now looking far too pleased with myself, and smiling mischievously, at the attentive audience:
"I learnt that poem as a blind person reads braille. I learnt the poem, letter by letter, word by word, by stroking with my learning finger"
(the class laugh at the gesture of my upright finger)
"I learnt Tennyson’s poetry by touching his words, and by feeling his feelings entering my cerebral-cortex, in such a way that I might be able to write the words, or read the words, or listen to the words, or speak the words, or imagine his, or any other poets words, of anything that I might like to think of as poetry."
"That’s what poetry fucking well is my dear; and those are my final, and our closing words"