Most of Kanye West’s songs would be great options for this prompt, and the one I chose just happens to be one of my favorites at the moment. “Homecoming” from Kanye’s Graduation album, may be part of the greatest collection of songs on a single record.
One of Kanye’s greatest strengths as a rapper or a poet, is the way he can manipulate words. He can use the same word multiple times, in one line after another, and they can possess completely different meanings.
But, my name is Windy and I like to blow trees”
And from that point I never blow her off
I guess that’s why I’m here and I can’t come back home
And guess when I heard that? When I was back home
If that isn’t poetic, then I don’t know what is.
Throughout the song, Kanye chooses to develop a story about his relationship with a childhood friend. He compares their relationship to aspects of the city of Chicago to develop a nostalgic tone.
- But, my name is Windy and I like to blow trees
- And when I grew up she showed me how to go downtown
- Knew I was gang affiliated, got on TV and told on me
- I guess that’s why last winter she got so cold on me
All of these lines possess notable aspects of Chicago “Windy”, “downtown”, “gang affiliated”, and “winter”. In order to put the listener in his shoes, to appreciate the nostalgic feeling he gets when he thinks about the girl and his hometown. He is trying to get listeners to think about their home town so that they can understand what he feels when he thinks about this girl.
The job of a poet is to give new experiences to audiences. And since Kanye is obviously not utilizing prose, it is safe to say that his music is poetry.