Hello everyone! You may remember from a few weeks ago that I shared a review of "Ergon" by George HS Singer (if you missed it, you can read it here). And I'm excited to share with you all a guest post written by the author himself in which he shares what poetry means to him. Take it away, Mr. Singer!
Probably anyone who is reading this remembers a first experience as a child of reading a poem or a passage that really spoke to them. For me this happened in 6th grade after the death of my best friend. It seemed to me that everyone around acted as if death was not real or should not be talked about. Psalm of Life by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow with the phrase “foot prints in the sands of time” struck me like lightening one day in class. I realized that I was not the only one who had thought about mortality. This seems almost risible now but for a boy feeling very cut off from meaningful engagement with others who could understand his recent raw encounter with death, it was profound.
I started finding that literature was a balm for isolation and that it offered a way to touch upon, if not enter into, other people’s minds and that there were extraordinary writers who offered this communion. So, I hold onto the ambition that one of my poems might serve this purpose of dispelling loneliness for someone else who might be in need of communion with another mind concerned about some of the basics. I also find that when a reader or listener “gets” one of my poems, I feel briefly part of a community of the heart.
If I have a credo in my poetry, it is the notion that nothing is unmixed — that life is inexpressibly wondrous and terribly painful and both arise together at the same time. I also know that the experience, which is most fundamental to me, is wordless and so there is an inevitable limitation in trying to write about what is most important. To me the toolkit available through the art of poetry allows the possibility of at least hovering over that which I wish could be said, if not to enter into it. I am forgetting who said that language does violence to experience but that poetry is the language that does the least of such violence.
Thank you so much, Mr. Singer for sharing your beautiful words and thoughts with us.
Ergon is available on Amazon.