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1)Why is poetry so marginalized in today's world? Why have we...

1)Why is poetry so marginalized in today's world? Why have we gotten out of the habit, once common, of reading poetry for pleasure? You may be aware that, at one point in the nineteenth century, one of the best known men in American was the poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. His new poems were regularly published in newspapers, his books sold well, he gave sold-out readings, and he was the first American writer to be well-known to Europeans. Today, most Americans would be unable to name any living poet. What has changed? Is it society, or is it poetry itself? Do you think that, if you read enough poetry, you could start to enjoy it as you do fiction?

2) Dylan Thomas's "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night" (page 559) and Philip Larkin's "Church Going" (page 548).  Both deal with spiritual questions, but in very different ways. Tell me in deep details comparing them. How would you describe the form of each poem? How regular is it? What patterns do you fall into as you read? How does the form contribute to the meaning of the work? How would you describe the speaker in each poem? The emotional tone? The central meaning? 

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