Twentieth Century Poetry Evolution

Since starting this class at the beginning of the quarter my outlook on poetry has drastically changed. Before taking English 113 I had only been exposed to a slim margin of poetry. Before when I thought about poetry I always had an image in my mind of an old man in a dark, dreary room writing boring, unattainable literate, in which I had little interest in. Authors like Walt Whitman, Ezra Pound and T.S. Elliot gave an illusion that poetry was literature for the elite and educated. While their poems are classics and are considered literary masterpieces, they are extremely hard to relate to for a number of reasons. Although after taking this class I was exposed to a whole new genre of poetry, with a chic modern flair. Poets such as Sherman Alexie, Matt Gano, Sandra Cisneros and Andrew Hudgins may all have very different writing styles but their work has one thing in common: accessibility. Throughout the twentieth century, poetry has evolved from elite literature to literature for the people. The topics written about have become more universally understandable and have also made bolder statements.

Check out a poem by Ezra or Walt and compare it to a poem by Gano or Alexie. What differences do you see?