I've spent more years in school than I'm going to admit, but I will say one of the lessons I loved most about my English courses was learning how to better appreciate a work. I know many argue that they dislike dissecting and analyzing a work. Call me weird but reading criticism or giving a work a close read is akin to the mechanic's love of tinkering under the hood of the car. The car is no less beautiful or amazing when the mechanic is cleaning, repairing, listening to the inner parts of a car. The mechanic admires the machine and so he studies it, experiments and explores. I have the same fascination with literature.
In that vein, how do you read a poem? Give this some thought. Have you been taught or developed a method of your own over the years? Is there something to be gained from a concerted effort to understand the dynamics, the mechanics of writing? What do we gain from analysis or close reading?
Someone recommended a great resource to me years ago and in kind for anyone who is interested in the possibility of increasing her enjoyment and understanding of poetry, I recommend the same title, Edward Hirsch's, How To Read A Poem and Fall in Love With Poetry.