“poets today have… left it to pop stars to give people the poetry they really want: lyrical language charged with rhythm, rhyme and metaphor.”

Why is pop music the people’s poetry? That’s what they like – Adam Bradley – LA Times – May 7, 2017

“Say the word ‘poetry’ and many people will think of lilting cadence and singsong verse. Perhaps they will call to mind the love sonnets of William Shakespeare, or the fractured images of T. S. Eliot’s ‘The Waste Land.’ But poets today have mostly abandoned those patterns for something more esoteric. They’ve left it to pop stars to give people the poetry they really want: lyrical language charged with rhythm, rhyme and metaphor.”

Also see:

What makes song lyrics poetry?  – Michael Lindgren – Washington Post – May 11, 2017

“To praise effectively, one must also condemn. Examining a Bryan Adams song, for example, Bradley notes that the lyric ‘it cuts like a knife / but it feels so right’ creates a ‘dissonance’ that ‘generates some lyric heat.’ As someone with — to my cost — substantial knowledge of the Adams oeuvre, I am comfortable in saying that this is not a clever exercise in generating dissonance but rather a lazy, shoddy rhyme, perfectly typical of its creator, for whom no string of cliches was ever too shopworn or illogical.”

Bradley is “an English professor at the University of Colorado and the founding director of the Laboratory for Race and Popular Culture.” He is also a former student of the poetry critic Helen Vendler.

 

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