Thursday, 7 May 2020

Grady Chambers : part three

How did you first engage with poetry? 

Largely through the books on my parents' bookshelves. Both my parents are anti-war, anti-racism, pro-social justice activists who were born in the mid 1940s, and so their shelves were filled with a pretty great array of texts, among them a lot of Beat-era literature. My dad gave me Howl to read when I was probably 11 or 12, and I remember really liking it, at that age probably mostly because there were swear words and sex and so I felt cool reading it, but it's a poem I've come to absolutely love, and I try and read aloud to myself once a year or so. Also: I remember that in my freshman or sophomore year of high school, our teacher asked us to memorize a poem and recite it aloud to the class. I chose "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening," and still have it memorized. Reciting it in my head for so many years, I feel like I have a relationship with it. It's a comfort. 

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