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

No

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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.