How I Learned to Stop Analyzing and Embrace “The Hug,” with Tess Gallagher

Perhaps it’s in poor taste to reblog your own blog post. Blame it on the fad of Throwback Thursdays, probably already fading. But this showed up on my Facebook feed this morning, a post from three years ago when I was living in Northumberland and regularly reading with the Poetry Under the Paintings peeps in Lewisburg. There are some nits I could pick, but I’m not about to rewrite the piece. I think this is worth talking more about. I will add though, that I’ve been reading more and more soulful poetry in print lately. It’s been a dang good year for that, and it gives this old man/boy hope.

David J. Bauman

Monkey Prodigy Loves Hugs The Monkey Prodigy Loves Hugs

I thought of the title “Saved by ‘The Hug,'” but that seemed just a tad too cute. There is something transcendent though in this poem. I wanted to title this post with something about becoming totally engrossed in the unexpected. I thought of the word “surrender,”‘ but there is no war in this poem. I considered the word “consumed,” but there is no sense of predatory feeding here.

Connotation is important, not just in poems, but in blog titles as well. Whatever word you choose brings to mind other words and other possibilities. That’s part of the beauty of the whole process, and it’s something that both the author and the reader bring to a text.

But today is Sunday, and since I sometimes, like today have a Sunday off from work, let’s be a little less scholarly and just enjoy a poem, shall we?

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4 thoughts on “How I Learned to Stop Analyzing and Embrace “The Hug,” with Tess Gallagher

    • Thanks, Brian, I remember worrying that I read it too slowly, but maybe a beautiful thing about reading out loud is that, like music, you can play with various arrangements, fast or slow. It’s not written in stone. Glad you liked it!

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  1. David,y
    Please pick a date (hopefully in the near future) when I can come to visit. I’d love to see you and Brian, and get a tour of your library branch. Can you accomodate an overnight guest? (In other words, do you have a full couch or a love seat? (Please say full couch.) WARNING: Apparently I snore, but I’ve never been able to catch myself!) I miss you guys and would love a chance to come up, or is it over, or up and over, or slightly NNE, or is it E? Wait, maybe it’s NNW. I don’t know. I can get lost in m own apartment! Lol.

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