Reading Response: Poetry and Performance
Listen to We Real Cool and My Papa’s Waltz. These clips demonstrate the importance of performance, rhythm, and musicality in the poetic form.
Describe your listening experience of one or more of the poems. (If you prefer, you may find a recording of another poem from the course readings and describe your listening experience of it instead. If you choose this option, be sure to provide a link to the audio of the chosen poem.) How did hearing the text(s) recited aloud compare to a silent reading of it/them? Did the performance in any ways add to or detract from your experience of the text? Did the performance change your perception of the poem or its content in any ways? Explain how (or how not).
Support your ideas with textual details and analysis. When applicable, address how specific literary techniques and/or devices contributed to your experience?
We Real Cool (Listen to this recording of Brooks’ speaking about and then reciting her poem We Real Cool. When listening, consider how the recording conveys a sense of Brooks as a person and a poet and how her world outlook and experiences have shaped her writing. Also listen for how sound, rhythm, and musicality give life to the poem.)
My Papa’s Waltz (Listen to Roethke’s My Papa’s Waltz. Again listen for how sound, rhythm, and musicality give life to the poem. Also consider the relationship between the poem’s sound and its subject matter.)