The progression of life as a college student is weird to experience firsthand. Everything seems to be swirling rapidly around me, as each day blends into the next with seamless continuation. I feel a strange sense of permanent impermanence, so to speak. Friends, classes, jobs, and relationships only stick around on a semester-to-semester basis. Semesters are how I conceptualize time now. When speaking to classmates and friends, I notice that they feel similarly to me. Maybe this is a common college denominator: I am simply existing as an undergraduate student, and because of that, life moves faster than I do.
General feelings of impermanence paired with the quickness of life have made literature less necessary to me. “I don’t have time!” is always the answer when I think about how badly I need to sit down and read for a little while. The thought of taking time to write rarely crosses my mind when I have assignments to complete and homework to do. Although this mindset is a productive one, it is not a happy one to hold on to for too long. It’s a heavy ball on a long and winding chain.
This is where poetry comes in. Poetry matters in 2022 because it forces you to stop. It makes you look around and wonder what it is you’re constantly chasing. Poetry adds to the beauty of existence, and by pausing to read it, our minds are allowed to observe the wonderful world we live in. Taking a couple of minutes every day to read or write poetry has enhanced my life drastically. I feel like I am allowed to enjoy where I am when I’m immersed in someone’s thoughts on a page. I can observe my own happiness in a healthier way.
The best advice I have ever been given was that I should become invested in the life I’m living. I want to encourage you to take this advice to heart as well. Instead of just looking at things while they zoom by, choose to notice their beauty. Poetry can help ease this process, and I cannot emphasize its importance enough. Maybe in 2022 you will begin to take the time to read or write poetry. Maybe it will enable you to slow down a little bit too. A successful practice will enhance your everyday life as a rushed and busy individual, and will also help you put your days into perspective.
Written by: Browning Blair