Revised Open Lab – Rappers = Poets?

Before I ever thought I wanted to register for the class, I did not think anything that to do with poetry would catch my attention. Music motivated me to analyze poetry more profoundly. I was caught by people arguing whether or not the lyrics in the music genre of Hip Hop deserved to be called poetic, and whether if Rap’s legendary icon Tupac Amaru Shakur deserved to be called poet. My personal response is that some rappers do actually  fall into the category, and deserve to be called poets. In the book of Western Wind, poets such as Robert Frost mention simple moments, or ordinary events in their work. The poem Dust or Snow (pg. 121) depicts such moments.

The way a crow

shook down on me

The dust of snow

From a hemlock tree

Has given my heart

a change of mood

And saved some part

Of a day I had rued.

This is a moment, that a poet might take into consideration. The poem shows how a little incident that was expirienced between him and the “crow”, gave some life to a lifeless day. Just like Frost wrote, rappers do the same. They mention things that go on around them and within them. Although some of the modern day “rap stars” don’t have the same quality or talent to be considered, Tupac Shakur deserves to be recognized with having poetic skills. I clearly distinguish some of his lyrics to be poetic and to sustain quality that elevates him to another level.  To name a few songs “Keep Your Head Up“, “Only fear of Death“, “Smile” all sustain different themes on what the song is intended for. “Smile” is telling to smile and keep going no matter what happens, “Only Fear of Death” goes into his state of mind, giving his reason to fear dying and being reincarnated (paradox), “Keep Your Head Up” giving reason to cheer up and encourage women. The song “Brendas got a Baby” shows a real life unfortunate event, that very few now care to mention.

It is true that hip hop may have content not suitable for all, yet anything ranging from movies, televised shows or programs, books and so on; contain material that maybe offensive to others. I guess it depends what is the main interest of a person to decide. My opinion if the person has a great quality or set an emotion with their song, with the right expressions can be seen as a poet. Does anybody think rappers should be considered poets?Why? or if Tupac is a poet to be recognized. Can anybody identify poetic terms on the videos posted?

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2 Responses to Revised Open Lab – Rappers = Poets?

  1. LG29 says:

    You need to edit the title “rapers”. I think rappers are poets because most of them are rhyming, use similes, metaphors etc.

  2. zapt says:

    Thanks for catching that LG29

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