I predict this will be my least read column of the year because I am going to write about poetry.
It is both distressing and strange that so many people are put off by poetry, given that so many of our first experiences with language is with poetry — not only with children’s books like Dr. Seuss or “Goodnight Moon,” but even with the earlier singsong of parents babbling to their newborns, all sounds without meaning and yet deeply engaging.
In grade school, you’ll find dedicated fans of Shel Silverstein’s “The Giving Tree” and “Where the Sidewalk Ends.”
But then something happens, and soon enough, poetry, which once seemed natural and elemental, becomes alien and strange. If you feel this way, I am sympathetic; I once felt this way myself, from junior high into my mid-20s.