Saturday, April 19, 2014


    Ted Kooser's "Giant Slide" tells of a tiny, run-down theme park with a giant slide. This park is long closed, but the narrator returns. The narrator observes the old ticket booth, the chain link fence, and blue morning glories. All of a sudden the narrator is thrown back into his past memories and he envisions everybody that once came to the park and slid down the giant slide. He is brought back to reality and realizes that all of those fun times are now just ancient memories.

    Before viewing the adaptation of "Giant Slide" I had already made up my mind that I was going to hate it. I mean, how can someone take such an amazing piece of literature and turn it into a comic strip? How can someone take an author's creation and know how to adapt it to portray the same thing the author wanted to portray? I was certain of my answer. They can't. With my mind made up, I finally looked at the adaptation.

    However, as I looked at the comic, I realized what I hadn't understood about adaptations. It is not about portraying a poem exactly like the author had intended it. In fact, that is impossible. It is about interpretation. It is about discovering what you connect to in a poem and bringing it to life. 

    It is about being so absorbed in a piece of literature, that you have to stroke your brush against a canvas. Being that influenced by literature is what the writer intended. I don't think a writer could hope for anything more than to have their readers so completely absorbed in the story that they have create art. It is not about a 'perfect' adaptation, it is about INSPIRATION.

            read what inspires you, and then inspire


  1. Alaina, I hadn't thought to look at adaptation that way until I read this. Thank you. I will go into my final project now with a new perspective :-)

    1. I agree. This is very nicely stated! I think we could look at reading in general as an interpretation of the text--readers also play an important role in creating meaning in a text and our ideas of what characters look like, for example, might not be the same as the author's ideas of what the character look like (and as we've discussed in class, certainly aren't the same as the visions of the people who choose actors for film versions of our books!). I think inspiration and interpretation are excellent words to add to our discussion of these adaptations.

  2. I have to agree—the goal of an adaptation isn’t to portray a poem or other medium exactly as the author had intended it. I read once that no two readers ever read the same book. That’s because every reader may read the same words, but their range of experience and feelings color the movie that plays in your head when taking in a story.

    Since no two people are viewing the same mental ‘movie’, how can any adaptation ever really represent how the author intended it or even how we’re going to interpret it?
    Great blog.