1/21/2020 0 Comments
Views on Poetry and Other Art Forms in Emerson's The Poet Emerson's "The Poet: An Essay," is packed with statements, and ideas that contradict each other in many ways. His use of lofty language and ego driven ideals are built to confuse the average reader and are clearly not meant for the purpose of entertainment. As a reader, I found the text to be confusing and unfounded in its theories about man's connection with nature. Firstly, Emerson starts right off by throwing a wrench in his own works. His description of admirers of fine art and sculpture is nothing more than a generalization. One cannot make such sweeping statements about a group of people. There are always exceptions to the rule. I am sure that many admirers of fine art know a lot about the subject and have very good reasons for liking what they do. Not only does Emerson slam the artistic elite, but his whole essay is an embodiment of the ideals he is trying to dispel in these first few sentences. Emerson treats poetry in the exact same manner in which he scoffs at in the beginning of the essay. The author feels that The "true poet" is our closest connection with nature. I am very sure that there are people who admire paintings of a fine nature scene, and they surely feel that it is our closest connection with nature. Words are not the only way to express oneself in a connecting way with nature. This brings me to another sweeping generalization that Emerson makes in the body of this essay. He actually makes the statement that words to a song are not poetry in a sense. Being a musician, I strongly disagree with such a statement. Song lyrics can be just as touching as any other type of poetry. In fact, this type of poetry has another added bonus besides the words. This is called music! Music itself can even stand alone in painting a very vibrant picture of nature with no words at all. This is more of an accomplishment, because the author is not allowed to use words in his sound painting. Music that describes nature without the use of language is still using symbolism to convey the connection between man and nature. The difference is that a violin might symbolize the wind instead of a bunch of words.
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