Thoughts on The Waste Land

Honestly this poem was extremely frustrating to read, and I’m sure others in our class agree. I found it interesting that he included allusions from many other sources in order to create something very new and personal, but at the same time the story itself jumped around from narrator to narrator and location to location, making it difficult to follow. After reading each section for the first time, I felt confused and lost. But after reading the sections again I was able to grasp the ideas a little bit better. I look forward to the seminar tonight as well as the discussion on Thursday in order to hear everyone’s thoughts on the poem.

I truly love rap and hip hop music, and I consider (certain) rappers to be incredibly talented poets. The best rappers are able to evoke emotions from their listeners, and share their personal stories, generally within a concise 16 bar per verse structure. And the truly great rappers are able to do all of this while demonstrating a smooth flow, matching their rhymes to fit the pockets of the beat that they are rhyming over, and setting themselves apart from the other rappers out there by having their own personal style and cadence. I love this type of musical poetry with a passion, but unfortunately I don’t feel the same way about poetry in general. I enjoy the artistic and creative aspect of it, but compared to poems that are laid over musical backgrounds, it just doesn’t compare to me.

I didn’t enjoy this poem very much because I felt like it was too difficult to relate to in any way, and I will continue to stick to the likes of The Notorious B.I.G. and Kendrick Lamar when I’m in need of a poetry fix.


2 thoughts on “Thoughts on The Waste Land

  1. So I take it you weren’t convinced by Kevin’s suggestion that the poem is rather like rap…

    Or put it another way: thanks to rap (but also film, music videos, and so on), we’re quite used to cultural forms that are fragmented, have a lot of quotation (sampling) and don’t necessarily tell a coherent story. Why do we find these “normal” and the Waste Land still seems “difficult”?

  2. I suggest you turn off comment moderation. You do it like this:

    Go to Dashboard, then Settings, and under Settings to “Discussion Settings.” Then there are a bunch of options, but the easiest is to uncheck the two boxes that say:

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