I really wanted to write my own ditty on poetry and literature–and perhaps later I will–but for now enjoy this other person’s excellent reflection on the subject.
“Is it safe to expose children to such dark images? I think so, or as safe as any real poetry can be; poetry is no tame lion. At that age, I had no categories in my mind for real darkness, and so the darkness couldn’t get in to do me damage. But the image stayed; which meant that when the reality showed up years later, I was not defenseless.”