Is there a better way to experience poetry than sitting in a nice quiet corner and escaping into the pages of that new discovery you just acquired at your local independent bookstore?
Have you experienced poetry live? Poetry was born as an oral tradition. Epics recited to gathered crowds or regulated verse presented to the imperial court. Seeing and hearing the words spoken by their creators brings an immediacy to the poetic experience that can not be duplicated any other way. Even in this day of YouTube and Instagram, live streaming and podcasts, attending a live poetry reading allows you to experience an energy that does not transmit outside the actual venue.
The same is true, perhaps more so, for the poets themselves. That connection with an audience, be it in a small store or a large auditorium, charges an author with an electricity that drives further creativity. The ability to elicit immediate feedback – watch your audience reactions – and to play off the work of others is priceless.
Readings make poetry come alive. The audience may be small, but they are passionate.