March Madness and the Jabberwocky

I’ll admit, I’m one of those boring people who don’t have a bracket, have no clue which teams are doing well, and really don’t care (OK, except for the UConn women—a person has to have some loyalties!) To me, “bracketology” sounds like a medical specialty, but I know to many students, it is a March obsession.

That’s why I loved last week’s New York Times’ Poetry Pairings blog. Each week Poetry Pairings matches a work from the American Life in Poetry project with something in the news. Last week the match was March Madness and the Jabberwocky, linking the Jabberwocky with a children’s book review written in the context of basketball. Don’t you just love it? A few weeks ago the pairing tied a 19th century poem to Whitney Houston’s obituary. How about tying poetry to the Races Remixed series?

If one path to creativity is bringing together diverse ideas and disciplines, Poetry Pairings is a stroke of genius. We understand poetry better through the lens of contemporary writing—but we also may understand today’s news, ideas, and challenges better through the lens of poetry. What a great pairing. For a more complete list of poetry pairings, see their index page.

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