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The Troubadour Podcast

Author: Kirk j Barbera

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"It is the honourable characteristic of Poetry that its materials are to be found in every subject which can interest the human mind." William Wordsworth The Troubadour Podcast invites you into a world where art is conversation and conversation is art. The conversations on this show will be with some living people and some dead writers of our past. I aim to make both equally entertaining and educational.In 1798 William Wordsworth and Samuel Coleridge published Lyrical Ballads, which Wordsworth called an experiment to discover how far the language of everyday conversation is adapted to the purpose of poetic pleasure. With this publication, he set in motion the formal movement called "Romanticism." 220 years later the experiment is continued on this podcast. This podcast seeks to reach those of us who wish to improve our inner world, increase our stores of happiness, and yet not succumb to the mystical or the subjective.Here, in this place of the imagination, you will find many conversation with those humans creating things that interest the human mind.
221 Episodes
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O. Henry is a romantic writer, not because he writes epic tales of our medieval past, or that his stories always are love stories (though this one is!) but rather, because of his unique usage of language.He never wanted to accept that the ordinary had to be ordinary. He wanted it to be extraordinary, exotic, exciting, filled with wonder and imagination. Even a tale about a man meeting a woman on a cattle ranch can be placed in the same realm as Aeneas meeting Dido.Listen to this very simple tale, one with lessons for those of us dating today in the 21st century, and rekindle your wonder for the everyday.
This is the final reading of Benito Cereno by Herman Melville.
The primary narrative of this novella ends with this chapter. Next is a series of deposition documents describing the inquiry into the slave revolt.In the summary I condense the key events of this chapter. In the closer look, I discuss three key points that are helpful in understanding this piece by Melville.1) The core epistemological quandary I posed at the beginning, "A man who is incapable of comprehending a certain series of events is put in a situation where he must do exactly that." Throughout all three chapters we learn there are numerous reasons, Captain Delano is incapable of understanding the predicament he is in. But one that becomes explicit in this chapter is his racism.2) The mystery is revealed in a general way, and this alters the image of all the bizarre events we have seen in the story.3) the third point I make in the closer look section is a severe scrutiny of a particular image of Captain Deleno in the moments before he has his revelation regarding what has occurred on board The San Dominick. 
This chapter concludes the major part of Melville's narrative.  We left off at the end of chapter 2 with the shaving scene. Delano has left Cereno to confer with his slave Babo. Delano is surprised t see Babo running after him with a cut on his face. He has been cut by his master Benito Cereno, in retaliation for Babo having accidentally cut him during shaving.Next up will be a quick summary and a closer look at this chapter. That will be followed by the finale of Benito Cereno.
Here I give a quick summary of chapter 2: The Gordian Knot. Then we dive into the mind of Captain Amasa Delano.One of the key values of reading great literature is the ability to enter the consciousness of another person. This is something we are unable to do in our daily lives. In Captain Delano you may find an unnerving similarity to the way that your mind (and mine!) works. 
This is my reading of chapter 2 of "Benito Cereno" by Herman Melville.Please note that this is part 4 of the series on this novella. In part One I have created an introduction for the text. In Part Two I have read Chapter 1: A Ship in Distress. In Part Three I have created a summary of Chapter 1 and a Closer Look into that chapter. This is part Four.Please note that the Chapters breakdown and titles are my own creation they are not Melville's. I have broken it down this way to make it easier to digest. Up next will be a summary of Chapter 2 as well as a closer look into the chapter.
In this episode we go over the first "Chapter" which I have titled "A Ship in Distress." Make sure you have listened to parts 1 & 2. Part 1 is my introduction to Melville's Novella. Part 2 is my reading of Chapter 1. And this part, 3, is my quick summary followed by a closer look into the chapter. I broke the Closer Look into 4 categories:1) The Odd Ship2) Aboard the Ship3) Benito Cereno - First Surmises4) Captain Amasa Delano, Whaling Ship Captain ExtraordinaireNext up will be a reading of "chapter 2."Please note these chapters are my own inventions and not Melville's. He has written this story in one non-stop narrative. I am breaking it up to help make it a little more easy too digest.
This is the first reading of the novella by Herman Melville. In part 1 I argued why this remains a classic story we should all read. It may help to listen to my introduction.Visit troubadourmag.com for a list of important terms, including nautical terms, that may help you to better understand the text.In the next episode I will give you a summary of this section of the story, and then an exploration of some key themes in the text so far.
In part one of this series I argue why it is of critical importance for all Americans to read this novella by Herman Melville before it is too late. In it are critical observations about the American spirit, and an underlying philosophy that is currently tearing us apart.Melville's story, published in 1855, is a thriller/mystery based on a true story. In 1799 an American Whaling Captain, Amasa Deleno, espies a ship in distress off the coast of Chile. As a good American, he goes to the rescue, bringing food and water. Upon boarding the ship, however, he begins to perceive odd behavior that he cannot explain.In this introduction, I describe the core epistemological quandary of this character, and of our own lives in America today.Stories should be experienced and enjoyed as stories, but nonetheless, with some guidance, I will help to show you how this classic tale can breath insight into your own daily life.
On this episode I talk with Troubadour Magazine's new Assistant Editor, Joe Dimon, about the three short stories we selected for his upcoming course on Science Fiction Literature. The three stories areNathaniel Hawthorne's "Rappaccini's Daughter"Kurt Vonnegut's "Harrison Bergeron,"David Griggs's "A Song Before Sunset."In this episode we discuss each short story and compare them. Whether or not you have read them,we give you an overview and explain there signifance.
In this short episode we explore the poem "Spring" by Shakespeare, from his play "Love's Labour Lost." This short two stanza poem will become clearer and clearer to you as we flesh out the four dimensions of poetry.
Kelsy Landin is a sculptor who has recently found an unexpected niche: The Nose. On the social media platform TikTok her videos have been reaching millions of young people. She had been making 60 second videos teaching different aspects of sculpting, when suddenly, one video she posted reached 4.5 million views and almost 17,000 comments.What happened? On this show we discuss that particular video (and I play the video for you) and we discuss how finding the beauty of a nose led to some very important discoveries about ourselves and art.Enjoy this conversation with Kelsy Landin.Support her work on Patreon https://www.patreon.com/SculptrixBuy a bronze https://www.thesculptrix.com/sculptures/bronzeWatch her Tiktoks @ landinartWatch her on youtube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEotHcs3DgZQcJpOc1PsB5g
Don't just read news articles, read poetry. 
Jeremiah Cobra is the author of the book—written during quarantine—"And Then he Shot his Cousin." We discussed the creative process for this story, the background and even the style and content. I had a wonderful time exploring the artist creations of Jeremiah. He's a literary artist worth reading.Purchase his book on amazon today: https://www.amazon.com/Then-He-Shot-His-Cousin/dp/0999904302/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=jeremiah+cobra+and+then+he+shot+his+cousin&qid=1591160007&sr=8-1
Shakespeare in LUST!When most of us think of Shakespeare we think of the great love poet. He is known as one of the greatest romantic love poets of all time. Yet in this poem he rails against sex. Not romantic sex of course, but sex devoid of spirit.By the end of watching this video you'll be able to talk about this poem with anyone, and you'll have a better understanding of how Shakespearean sonnets are structured and how they operate.
Ask someone the following two questions. First, "Is reading literature a good thing?" Then, "Do you read literature?" And it is amazing that everyone will answer affirmative in the former and negative in the latter.Do that with anything else in life and you will likely find a wide range of answers. "Is riding horseback a good thing?" Some will say yes and some will say no and some will be neutral. Then follow with the second question "Do you horseback ride,? And again you'll get a variety of answers. Try the question with 'working hard,' 'following your passion,' 'exercise,' 'eating healthy.'There is a huge disconnect in our society. We all know that reading literature is a Good and yet very few of us actually read literature. On today's episode I talked with Deanna Heikkinen from Pisan Academy to talk about the value of literature. Both Deanna and I share the missoin of attempting to bring literature to non-academics. At the Pisan Academy, they focus on creating curriiculum for homeschoolers.
Who remembers those magic eye illusions from the 90s? On this episode I use Shakespeare's most famous poem to illustrate how poetry is like those illusions.Poetry begins as a meaningless jumble of lines on a page, but it ends with deep meaning. As Frost puts it, a good poem begins in delight and ends in wisdom. But how can we reach that "end?" And is it truly worth it?These are some questions I discuss with you as I explore this great and short 14 line sonnet by the great bard himself.
On this episode, Luc Travers and Kirk Barbera surprise each other (and hopefully you too!) with art. They chose a topic—Memory and Loss—and each chose a work of art to surprise the other with. Luc chose a painting and Kirk chose a poem. Memory and loss are part of the human experience. Whether you're 15 or 100 how we deal with loss and how we remember that which we have lost will change. In this episode Luc and Kirk will discuss two artists conception of this topic, and explore the ways in which it impacts our lives.
Poets are thinkers. We don't see them as thinkers. But great poets have a special way of thinking that can benefit us all.In this poem we see that type of thinking at its clearest. The poem is a simple poem about two types of love, but expressed in the way that only a poet can express it.
William Blake believed there were two contrary states battling it out within each and every individual human being. Innocence and experience. The way that we developed as unique individuals was by a "dialectic process." That is, there is a Thesis (a little boy is lost) and an Anti-thesis (The little boy is found) Together they can become a synthesis, or, a new thesis.We find this process all throughout this book of poetry by Blake.In today's episode we will be covering the two aforementioned poems. They are very short but reveal much of the way that Blake believed the human soul was developed.The Little Boy LostBY WILLIAM BLAKEFather, father, where are you going       O do not walk so fast.Speak father, speak to your little boy       Or else I shall be lost,The night was dark no father was there       The child was wet with dew.The mire was deep, & the child did weep       And away the vapour flew.Little Boy FoundBy William BlakeThe little boy lost in the lonely fen,Led by the wandering light,Began to cry, but God, ever nigh,Appeared like his father, in white.He kissed the child, and by the hand led,And to his mother brought,Who in sorrow pale, through the lonely dale,Her little boy weeping sought.
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Comments (1)

بلقيس سامي

thank you for this , I've enjoyed every bit of it ❤

May 4th
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