In the Foreword 'The Ode Less Travelled' by Stephen Fry, the author offers guidelines which have resonated with me ever since I have read it and reread it. I have now made a habit of one of the rules which is:
Rule One - Slowly! (It's Like Eating Chocolate)
Savour every word and every line. Reading verse can be like eating chocolate - so much more pleasurable when you allow it slowly to melt inside of you, so much less rewarding when you snap off big chunks and bolt them whole, all but untasted. In our age, one of the glories of poetry is that it remains an art that demonstrates the virtues and pleasures of taking your time. You can never read a poem too slowly, but you can certainly read one too fast.
Read out loud. Among the pleasures of poetry is the sheer physical, sensual, textural, tactile pleasure of feeling the words on your lips, tongue, teeth and vocal chords.
Read this haiku slowly and out loud, that's where the magic is. Enjoy.
early morning moon
it rolls off the tongue
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