Bits of Verse – The Wondering Minstrels

Back in the late 1990s and through most of the 2000s, there was a daily poetry mailing list called the Wondering Mintrels. It was maintained by a couple of poetry enthusiasts from MIT. The moderators, Thomas Abraham and Martin DeMello, used to post a poem a day along with a personal commentary on it and invited readers to weigh in too. It gave way to some really amazing discussions of poetry in their comments section. They even started posting guest poems sent by regular readers too. The archives can still be found here.

I used to be a huge fan of the mailing list, and spent hours lurking in the comments section, enjoying the hell out of the discussions. I learnt a lot about poetry appreciation on those discussions, though I did not participate in them. For a long time, the list was my daily fix before starting on my work day. There is nothing like the beauty of the words, the vividness of the imagery, the quirk of some of the humorous poems to lighten you up and brace you for a long day at work.

The site moved a few times, from its original repository in the MIT network to a yahoo groups mailing list and eventually moved on to its own blog space. I faithfully followed it all through it many avatars. But for the some reason, the posts stopped coming sometime in early 2007, never to be revived again.

With this blog, I can’t even begin to try recreating that massive body of work. But I am going to be posting my favourite poems, song lyrics, bits or whole thereof (despite what the title promises)or maybe even bits of prose that I totally enjoyed reading. I am not planning to stick with only English either. So, be forewarned.

I am going to be posting one poem at a time, along with a note on my own personal experience with reading it.

I hope you enjoy reading the bits of verse too!

2 thoughts on “Bits of Verse – The Wondering Minstrels

  1. This is awesome Ranji. I remember stumbling on their blog sometime (only) in 2006 and was lurking until around the time the posts stopped coming. Wonderful to see you reviving a bit of that! And what great verses to begin with (I ve come here after reading the later posts)! Kudos.. Keep up the good work!

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