ENG 4U 2012: Anti-Poetry Deflector Shields

An  important note: I will extend the deadline for the ENG 4U Hamlet assignment to Monday. You can ask all of your questions tomorrow.


Today, you will watch a stirring collection of visual poetry. You will also start an argument with the former Poet Laureate of the United States.

Don’t get your Anti-Poetry Deflector Shields up.  You won’t need them. Today, Billy Collins, author of Introduction to Poetry, will explain why.


  1. Watch  Billy Collins’ visual poetry. Pay particular attention to the poem Collins reads at the end of the video. It is dedicated to an unnamed 17 year-old.
  2. In a short, in-class response, take issue with Collins’ last poem. Your response may be in the form of poetry or prose. Play the role of 17 year-old, and tell the poet what you think. Is Collins right? Are you angry? Are you as lazy as the poet suggests, or does the fault lie elsewhere?

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