Thursday, November 11, 2010

Cranky Redux

1.  "Is Emily Dickinson a lesbian?" was the first question out of his mouth.  To kick off the discussion of one of my favorite poets, we begin with this question?  No. Way.  Dr. M. and A (a grad student) moved it to a discussion about gender ambiguity in her poetry and the role of gender (all worthy topics), but I just slapped my forehead in pain, anguish, and exasperation.  Why are we so willing to read her poetry through biography?  I was in fact so cranky that I wrote my reading journal with a twinge of an attitude (toward the view, not my prof).  I wanted to talk about the visual appeal of the poetry (capitalization and dashes, i.e.) and some other things. Cue: pain and frustration.

2.  There was going to be Rhet/Comp seminar next semester.  Yay, a class in my discipline! Perfect!  But, alas, due to the fracas that took place in October, the class was canceled.  Cue: woe and despair.

3  I seem to be developing a cold, one week before a draft and a research presentation are due. Cue: further woe and further despair.

4.  We counted all the people we should invite, could invite, have to invite.  Then we added up out of the almost absolutely bare minimum we have to invite that will come and it added up to more than our space will hold.  Lance is measuring to see if we can make it work.  Cue: let Lance deal with it for right now...I gotta finish out the semester!

5.  Today, something was said (not to me directly or about me directly) that pushed my anger button.  I don't really want to go into detail in an online space, but it's nothing too juicy and scandalous, and I might tell you if you ask me personally.  Needless to say, it made me cranky. (Cue: crankiness)

6.  I like the Romantics as much as anyone: but to the person in my class who insists that art is created from the outpouring of an effluent spring, the divine speaking through the poet, the lightning strike of inspiration, the drugged dream haze: this is not how it works.  Even the Romantics knew that.  Writing might begin (or contain) little flashes and moments of inspiration, but to make something good, the artist has to think, to have a purpose in creating, and execute with skill.  Otherwise any idiot high on pot could write like Coleridge, Wordsworth, Shelley, or [INSERT AUTHOR HERE].

7.  The same person also said that great art is never written with an intentional political/social purpose.  Puh-lease!  (Note: this person is not an artist: she once wrote one poem in one outpouring of emotion, so she bases this on that one experience.)

The non-cranky:
I'm obviously engaged and opinionated in my studies, so I guess that's a good thing?

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