Award winning poet Joshua Mehigan recently annotated his poem “Joshua Mehigan – Sad Stories” on Rap Genius, illustrating how poets can use the new tool.
Here is an excerpt from Mehigan’s annotation: “this poem was written in 2006, while Michael Jackson was still alive. Its title comes from Richard II: “let us sit upon the ground / And tell sad stories of the deaths of kings.” But I wasn’t thinking of death in a literal sense”
The 18th century writer Samuel Johnson has also joined Rap Genius from beyond the grave, his writings explaining William Shakespeare‘s work.
The site contains annotations for everything from 2Pac lyrics to F. Scott Fitzgerald prose to letters from Barack Obama to Chapter One of Genesis to Jay-Z lyrics. The site has a simple goal: “Our aim is not to translate rap into ‘nerdspeak,’ but rather to critique rap as poetry.”
If you want to annotate your work (or your favorite writer’s work), here’s how to start a free Rap Genius account. Who would you like to see annotate their work on the site?