If you find yourself confused, thwarted, and frustrated when you try to understand poetry, fear not. Over a series of ten upcoming posts in the Literature 101 category, I will explain one method of helping you unlock and enjoy the meaning of poetic texts.
Let’s start with Step 1. This seems so simple, and yet for some reason I have noticed that many readers overlook it: stop and think about what the poem’s title means. In this post, we’ll talk about one poem in which understanding the title really sets us up to understand what is going on in the whole poem: W. H. Auden’s “Museé des Beaux Arts.”