Monday, September 13, 2010

Educational or Destructive?

I love poetry, it's as simple as that. I always have. Like most of my generation, I have been taught to read, write, analyze, and depict meaning out of poems from the beginning of my education. As a kid, my favorite authors were Shel Silverstein and Doctor Seuss, both classics. I would read their collections of poetry cover to cover. Last week, I read a few children's poems at the age of sixteen. With my now more accute ability to analyze and understand a poem, what I came to find was rather unsettling. Many of the poems presented incredibly mature and quite morbid ideas for their audience. I wondered if the children reading these poems were able to understand the dark meanings that lie underneath, or if that was left undiscovered by their naive eyes. I hoped that they were not yet able to depict the meaning of certain poems, because some could certainly traumatize and negatively affect their poor innocent and curious minds. With all of the rising issues in mental health, including suicide, eating disorders, and social disorders, I wonder, is an introduction to such mature and advanced poetry at this age to blame?

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