In Billy Collins’ poem “Introduction to Poetry” he is trying to get you the reader to stop analyzing poetry and immerse yourself within a poem, enjoying it as well as discovering what the deeper meaning is. He does this by using many different metaphors to help the reader to approach poetry with less reluctance and be able to enjoy the many pleasures of poetry. Don’t try to find a concrete meaning in it. Experience the beauty of the poem, ...view middle of the document...
He is wants the readers to think of a poem as a color slide and by holding it up to light it allows you to see it more clearly, seeing the true beauty.
He goes on to use a metaphor comparing the body of a poem to a buzzing bee hive. Stating “press an ear against its hive”. He is saying that the poem is a hive of a bee, which to most is unknown, scary and something you want nothing to do with. Collins is suggesting that you explore the unknown and see the beauty that might lie within. Like the sweet honey in the bee hive.
The metaphor of “dropping a mouse into a poem and watch him probe its way out” is the one I like the most in the poem. That metaphor is implying that you put a mouse in a poem like you would an experimental maze. As the mouse wonders through the maze he discovers different areas of the maze and finally finds a reward. In poetry you might not understand it but if you wonder around and explore the poem you will find the reward in it.
Billy Collins wants the reader to experience the poem rather than dissect it. By not torturing a confession out of it by analyzing it to death or dulling the pleasure that poetry can bring. Don’t make it too hard, just enjoy it.