Radio100Percent MFA Edition: Poetry and Other Indispensable Acts

Poetry and Other Indispensable Acts

Guests Fatima-Ayan Malika Hirsi, Sterling Kokroko
Runtime: 38:33
Ganesha Statue – Sterling Kokroko
Mississippi Mambo – Noro Morales
That’s How Rumors Start – Joey Pastrana & His Orchestra
Peaches – The Kinks

How many times do you wear your favorite pair of socks? How many times do you take that same sweater out of the dryer and put it on and walk around the house without pants? These aren’t trick questions, I swear I’m getting somewhere. This episode I’m talking about poetry with a poet I’ve met for the first time, but first, some of my thoughts. I don’t want to advocate for poetry being a utilitarian thing in that neoliberal nonsensical way that we’re all poets, everything we breath is poetry, man. That’s a stereotype. While everyone can be profound at times, take a fool for instance, poetry isn’t on the tip of every tongue, or in every moment of suffering, or in every victory. Those moments may be timeless in that they repeat every day and that’s fine but that’s not poetry. However epic it may seem to you, those moments are reference points for poems already written. Think about it and most of the time your voice is overcome with someone else’s words. It’s a tough pill to swallow, I know, but hey, there are poets, there are accountants, there are librarians, there are doctors. I’m not trying to be reductive, there is a lot of really good poetry out there, things you will never experience, never hear, nothing, not a bit, and you will still recognize it as something other than poetry because the practitioner didn’t stumble into your field. It may seem like I’m diverging right now but I’ll get right back on topic. What I’m saying is poetry can’t be confined in a field of view, it is always incomplete, and always wandering. You don’t wear your favorite socks every day. You may do that thing with your sweater when time allows for it, not when your parents are home, or kids, or whatever. In those fleeting moments between realities is where poetry is most present and even if it is there it takes certain voice to recreate that poetry in words. That’s the artistry of the poet. Some people make nails, some people hit them, they all keep the house up.

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