Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Delusions, Etc. by John Berryman

John Berryman is one of my favorite poets. The Dream Songs is one of my favorite books. I didn't like his early work very much, although I think it is technically good, I think it is way too dry.

The Dream Songs, Berryman opens up and the poems are unique, gorgeous, emotional, and very funny.

I was worried about [book:Delusions, Etc.|1402046] because I wasn't sure if it was going to be like the Dream Songs or the older style. Luckily, the poems were like the Dream Songs (mostly). The poems were in 5 sections. I didn't like the first section that much. There was a section of poems to famous people, like Emily Dickinson and George Washington that section was great.

There were even a couple Henry (the main character in the Dream Songs)poems in the book, which I was happy to see, just a few, just enough for a nice visit with Henry.

Berryman, as usual was very structured and I had to read each poem many times before it became clear, but he is worth the time. I wish there were more poems. I think I've read all of his books.

My favorite poems in the book:

Your Birthday in Wisconsin You Are 140 (at the bottom of the page)

Henry by Night

Washington in Love



Slow Down!

My reading goal is kind of taking over my life. I set the goal to read 100 books this year and I am obsessed with it. I was waiting around at midnight on January 1 for Goodreads to open the 2012 book reading challenge goal so I could set my goal. The most I read in a year was 71. Poetry books are much shorter than fiction, so I didn't think it would be an issue to finish 100.

I am ahead of schedule, but I am doing nothing else lately, and I always have a feeling that I have to "catch up." Part of the anxiety is I organized the current books I have here at my house and put all the titles on Goodreads. I was shocked at my ratio of read vs. unread books.

So many closing bookstores, and great library book sales made it really easy for me to accumulate a huge amount of unread books. I didn't have a lot of books in the house before I could drive/get my own library card, so every book I had I read over and over, and there weren't enough books go on a shelf. Books are the only extra thing I spend money on, and it going to bookstores is one of my favorite things to do (another is going to libraries). Everyone who sees my house asks if I thought about getting an e-reader.

I haven't finished writing any poems yet this month. I feel like I might need to scale back my reading goals. I bet if I set my goal lower, I would still read the same or almost the same amount of books, but without stressing out about it.

As I was putting my reading list together, my first instinct was to pick the shortest books in my library so I could read more books this year/help out my read vs. unread ratio.

Very often, I will have an obsessive feeling about something and writing about it helps me sort of dissipate the obsessiveness. I am hoping this blogpost helps.