Part 1: There were a lot of ideas in Chapter Eight “Ci Vediamo” that struck me as important, but my favorite was on page 76. “The 1944 Italy I remembered brown and gray and lifeless.” This kind of took me by surprise because when I think of Italy I think of a bright, happy city filled with lots of people. “The 1963 Italy was filled with sparkling fountains, shiny little cars that honked and darted through well-kept streets, energetic young men and beautiful, well-dressed young women, huge neon signs that said CIT and COMPARI and CINZANO in bright blue or red or green.” When I hear Italy, this is what I think of. I think this is what a lot of Americans think of when they hear Italy, but to Hugo it meant war, but he also fell in love with it. “I hate to admit it, but that was the Italy I wanted to find. I fell in love with a sad land, and I wanted it sad one more time.” I really liked how he wanted to go back to the place he visited his first time and he wanted it to be the exact same way as when he had first visited.
The idea that struck me as most valuable in Chapter 9, "How Poets Make A Living". On page 101, "in some ways the university is a far more real world than business." Hugo is dealing with people at the University who are passionate about poetry and respect him for his poetry. In business, people don't care that Hugo is a poet and some of them hate him for it. "When teaching well I'm making love to a room of people." People care about his passion for poetry and I think that's great.
Part 2: I’ve learned quite a lot from my first two workshops. At first, I was a little nervous to share my poem because I didn’t know what people would think and I personally don’t think I’m the best at writing poems. It felt great when people said good things about my poem, but I also really liked it when people told me what I needed to work on. I also found it very helpful because it has helped me become a better writer and also gives me some perspective on what other people thought. I personally found it very difficult to criticize other people’s poems because I’m new at writing poems and haven’t had much experience with it. I really liked everyone’s poems in my class. I thought they were all very creative and it was hard to criticize it and find something that needed work. I felt like we all learned something new about one another. I really found the workshops beneficial and helpful.