Oct. 7th, 2008

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[Error: unknown template qotd]Today's poetry is all set to music, and people don't really call it poetry any more, they call it "songs". Some of the lyrics of modern music is easily as far-reaching and has as much impact on people as the poetry of fifty years ago. Not many people read poetry, but nearly everyone listens to music. And everyone has at least one favourite song, about which they say "The words in this song are just the best ever".

So then the next question would be, which songwriters are the best poets?

Going back a few decades I'd have to say Bob Dylan. I don't like his music at all, and he sings worse than even I do, but lyrically his songs are great, and definitely poetic illustrations of the times in which he wrote.

Through the 70s and early 80s I think the best poets were the progressive-rock musicians. Led Zeppelin. Rush. Deep Purple. During the later 80s and 90s this became bands like REM and Red Hot Chilli Peppers (now we're getting into my personal favourites). Now, I must be getting old, I tend not to pick up new bands so much, but I've found a few where the lyrics really speak to me. Creed, for example (damn shame they split up) and Muse.

So I'm going to finish with a "poem", by Michael Stipe of R.E.M.

Everybody Hurts )

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