Meeting poets I am
by the colour of their socks
the suspicion of a wig
the wasp in the voice
and an air, sometimes,
Best to meet in poems:
cool speckled shells
in which one hears
a sad but distant sea.
Central Idea: The central idea of the poem by Enunie De Souza is that poet is better assessed through their poems than their personality. At times the dress, hair or manner of speech of poet may confuse or create doubt in our minds as to their worth as poets but it is always better to aside their looks and go through their poems.
Summary of The Poem
The poem ‘Meeting Poets’ is jotted down by Eunice de Souza. In this poem the poet encourages the readers to pass judgment on the poets by their poetry rather than by their appearances. According to the poet thr authors (poets) are cumbersome people because they are shabby and are not emmaculate about their dress and personality.The colour of their socks and the way they wear a wig is awkward.They speak with irritation or bitterness. They have an air of unpleasantness about them yet their poems were beautiful pieces of art. In the last lines of the poem the poet advises that we must judge the writers by their works of art because their poetry always appears beautiful and therefore unlike them. Poetry is different from the appearance of the poets and distant from them like the sea shells from the sea but one could hear the sea in the same shells.
Main Attractions of The Poem
1. The poet is confused because of the appearance of the writers (poets).
2. The best way to know the poets is to know their works of art.
3. She compares them with the sea shells in which one could hear the sea.
4. It is the bitterness in the speech of the poets the poetry of the poets.
5. Writers. (poets) usually come up with outspoken comments which are too harsh to hear.
wig: covering of artificial hair which a bald wears
wasp: a stinging insect. (here) bitterness in the speech of the poets
air: (here) the behaviour of the poets
speckled: covered with speckles (marks)
Questions and Answers
Thinking about the Poem
1. Why is the poet confused when she meets poets?
Ans. The poet is confused because of the appearance of the writers (poets).
2. What according to the poet is the best way to know the poets?
Ans. The best way to know the poets is to know their works of art.
3. What does the poet compare the poets with?
Ans. The poet compares them with the sea shells in which one could hear the sea.
4. Explain the phrase – ‘wasp in the voice’.
Ans. The phrase means bitterness in the speech of the poets, the poetry of the poets. Writers (poets) usually come up with outspoken comments which are too harsh to hear.
Write the Denotative and connotative meaning of the following words from the poem.
Words = colour
Denotative Meaning = appearance
Connotative Meaning = disorderliness, shabbiness
Words = suspicion
Denotative Meaning = doubt
Connotative Meaning = hint
Words = dankness
Denotative Meaning = dampness
Connotative Meaning = unpleasantness
Words = cool
Denotative Meaning = cold
Connotative Meaning = calm
Words = speckled
Denotative Meaning = marked with dots
Connotative Meaning = stained
Words = distant
Denotative Meaning = far away
Connotative Meaning = unknown
1. You must have read about the life and poetry of various poets. Choose your favourite poet and write about his life and poetry in about 150 – 200 words.
Agha Shahid All (1947—2001)
Agha Shahid Ali was born in Srinagar 1947. He was educated at the University of Kashmir and in Delhi before going to the US for a PhD and a career as a poet and teacher. He was a teacher at the University of Massachusets, Amherst.
Agha Shahid Ali was perhaps one of the most loved poets of his time. Most of his poems are not abstract thoughts, but rather concrete descriptions of events of personal and political importance. He had an intense interest in geography, and he often blended the landscapes of America with those of his native Kashmir. His poetic works include Call Me Ishmael Tonight: A Book of Ghazals (2003), Rooms are Never Finished (2001), The Country without a Post Office (1997) and The Beloved Witness: Selected Poems (1992). He is also the author of TS. Eliot as Editor (1986) and has translated The Rebel’s Silhouette: Selected Poems by Faiz Ahmed Faiz (1992). He died after fighting a long battle with cancer. He lies buried in the U.S.
2. Write a personality profile of any local poet or writer you know.
Rahman Rahi (1925)
He is the most outstanding modern Kashmiri poet. A former professor of Kashmiri and also a Professor Emeritus at the University of Kashmir, he is the author of several books of poems and literary criticism. He is the recipient of numerous literary awards including the Sahitya Akademi award, Kabir Sanian and the American- based Irfan Kathwari Foundation award. He is the first and so far the only Kahsmiri writer on whom Sahitya Akademi has conferred its fellowship.