The Poetry of James Hall

The Poetry of James Hall

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Looking at James Hall's writings we learn that he is comedic with a very underlying theme of change. His poems all seem to circle around a very familiar thing that we are all familiar with. Change whether it is new or old or just realizing we have changed, is all the same. In his works "Maybe Dats Your Pwoblem Too," "White Trash," and "Preposterous" there are different kinds of change that are discussed.

In "Maybe Dats Your Pwoblem Too" we see a person speaking as if he were Spiderman. The narrator talks about how he would like to have change in his life, but its hard to just stop being Spiderman. He says he tries to burn his suit and it would not burn. He goes on to say, "Maybe dat's da whole pwoblem wif evwytin Nobody can buin der suits dey all fwame weisitant." The focus of change here is that at one time or another everyone wants to be something different than who they are but sometimes we can't change and just have to be who we are.

"White Trash" by Hall talks of a different kind of change. The narrator in this piece is talking about the family who has just moved in next door and comments on the appearance of the surrounding properties. "The boy next door opened a box, took out the precious present and shook these white spun plastic droplets into the wind. It's how his family thinks," this part of the poem exemplifies the randomness of the new neighbors lifestyle. The narrator goes on to say that, "They'll be there when we are gone. Bright tumors, rooted in the dark. Crowding the dirt. Nothing makes them grow. But nothing kills them either." It is at this point that he realizes that they will remain in the neighborhood and that things change such as a neighborhood, or the way people tend to their property, or raise their children.

In Hall's third poem, "Preposterous" another kind of change is being discussed and that is the idea of being old versus young. It talks about this very popular girl who made a list concerning physical traits of all the boys in her grade. The narrator wanted to be on that list and he received the title "wittiest." "For all that I won Wittiest. Wittiest." As you can see wittiest wasn't what the speaker had wanted, "Not this, this Wittiest, which makes me work so hard, so everlasting to keep Jean Calvin entertained.

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" The theme of change in this is how a person gets older and those elementary things that one was once concerned about are no longer important.

As one can see Hall circles this poetry around change. Whether it is this way or that it all has to do with humans and the fact that somewhere change occurs. Sometimes we may want change and sometimes not, but sometimes that is part of life as well. One thing these poems assure us of is that change is unavoidable no matter who we are. Even Spiderman has to endure change.
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