NaPoMo QOTD Because This Sounds Like An Actual Reason I Wouldn't Keep A Gun In My House AND Because Humor is Serious Business

"while the other musicians listen in respectful
silence to the famous barking dog solo,
that endless coda that first established
Beethoven as an innovative genius."
 - Another Reason Why I Don't Keep a Gun in the House by Billy Collins* (PoLau '01-'03)

First and foremost, this poem is hilarious. If you have ever had that neighbor with that dog, the breed that can't breathe without barking, yeah THAT dog. This poem is for you. I have that neighbor. With that dog. With walls thin enough to hear when she microwaves lunch (It's an unhealthy amount). This poem is for me.

I love funny poetry, and this poem had me in stitches. April is, in addition to NaPoMo, National Humor Month. So, I wanted to include something that really shows that poetry is not just stuffy and formal. It's also hilarious. I think, in general (or at least in public schools/state universities) poetry that isn't stuffy and serious is overlooked as some lesser descendant of actual poetry. Billy Collins used his terms as PoLau to try to turn that stereotype around. His online anthology Poetry 180 brought together 180 poems, one for each day of the high school year. He just didn't want people to rip them to shreds to find the hidden meaning. Just listen to them. I love that plan.

*From The Poets Laureate Anthology, published by W.W. Norton in association with the Library of Congress. Poem copyright Billy Collins.


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