Poetry…

are there special words
to be used in a poem
words that are cloudy
obtuse and pedantic
are poems often written
upside down
wrong ways around
or even backward
is a poem considered good
when it can’t be
understood
are some poets
lauded
even applauded
when no one can agree
on what they’re saying
because in reality
they aren’t saying anything
at all
but think they are special
and misunderstood
because they can’t write a line
that’s even close
to being good
and we wonder
why poetry books don’t sell
while people shrink back
from the very word itself
when children run screaming
from the classroom
when asked to write a poem
how loquacious
and vivacious
when the truth is
that poems that matter
aren’t written to impress
with a vocabulary
that bores
but are written from the heart
a gift from the writer to the reader
that can be easily understood
and appreciated
because poetry
is life itself
on the most basic level
not made to confuse
but to hold out a word
then another
and another after that
so that bonds can be formed
and feelings
experiences
and ways of seeing the world
can be transferred
from one to another

at least
that’s what poetry means
to me

 

 

 

 

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42 Responses to Poetry…

  1. Yes, obscure and obtuse don’t do it for me either.

    • I’m glad poetry today is so different and beautiful. I poetry out lives its bad rep at some point, and people try reading it again. Just asking someone if they read poetry makes them take a step back. I tell them it’s not the same as it was but they won’t even consider it.

      • There is still a lot of obscure and deliberately difficult poetry. A sense that you’re “in” if you get it, and you’re “out” if you don’t.

      • You’re right and that attitude hurts all poets, since it drives readers away, often regarding poetry as pompous and not worth the effort. Your poetry is beautiful because it paints a picture, you don’t try and trick, or confuse the reader. You don’t try to impress others with obscure words and lead them down the wrong path. Slam poetry has helped get the message out to the youth. They say what they mean, it gets people to listen and to read it. It’s the message/thought that’s important, not the words you know. When poetry doesn’t connect, people don’t always try again, they just walk away, their belief that poetry is not for them, confirmed. I think people should write what they want and there will always be those who write for themselves and others who like to puzzle things out, but if you want to reach people, you have to write in a way that touches them. Bukowski is crude and disgusting but people love him because he talks directly to them and tells them about the seedy side of life in a way they can understand. He never tried to be anything else and while I often find him gaggable (not a real word), I still read him once in awhile. He’s honest. Never puts on airs, knows he’s a creep and just writes about that, because it’s what he knows. I would like poetry to become something people could relate to and enjoy. If schools could teach it in a way that kids had more freedom to experience it and write it, without all the rules, I think it might make a difference. My grandchildren hated it because of all the rules and what they wrote, trying to use the rules, was never good enough, even though their poems were beautiful. They have turned their back on poetry because of their teacher’s inability to care about the damage he was causing. The kids were so worried about how many words on a line, or how many lines, they had, that the poem didn’t actually matter at all. Very sad.

      • I agree with you. I wrote poetry from a young age but I listened to what other people said about what poetry is. I should never have listened. Poetry is part of my soul and I can’t let someone else tell me how to do it. It can be the best part of me and the worst. I won’t let someone else take it away again. Some people are drawn to it because of the rules, and that’s okay. But I don’t want rules imposed on me. For me, it’s about speaking my heart. My inner corny, childish me who loves words but didn’t get to write poetry for years because I felt judged. Don’t let anyone stop you, my friend. Make you own rules. Speak your truth.

      • Beautifully said. That should be read to every child or person who wants to be a poet but is afraid they can’t live up to the rules or what others tell them it is. I agree with every thing you said…absolutely.

      • Giving you the smile and nod of another kindred spirit, my friend.

    • You too Brenda. Hope all is well. This wouldn’t go to the right comment, so I’m putting it here instead. LOLOLOL

  2. cindy knoke says:

    Your poetry flows so beautifully and naturally.

    • Thank you for that. I do appreciate it. I actually don’t know a single thing about poetry. It wasn’t part of my life until I started blogging and writing the things I write, which I CALL poetry. 🙂 But I have no idea what I’m doing. If I’m actually writing poetry, then I think anyone can do it. It’s just telling a story a different way.

  3. I succumb to the allure of enormous, indeterminate, frivolic vocabulary

  4. oldmainer says:

    Well guess what. That’s what does it for me too. Some poetry is like a Picasso painting. I don’t know what it means but I am supposed to be impressed anyway.

    • Excellent example. Just because someone says something is great, doesn’t mean it is, except to that person. Picasso did some brilliant work but truthfully, as a woman, he hated me and made women ugly, don’t really care if he was experimenting. Could have done it with men. Hate is hat and ugly is ugly, cubism, aside, couldn’t care less. Art means whatever you want it to mean. It stands alone and is always defined by the viewer. Always. Thank you for bringing it up.

  5. I love this! Great work!

  6. Ken W. Simpson says:

    Witty attack against pretentiousness in poetry – seen often in academic literary journals.

    • Thank you. I mean, anyone can write anything they like. The point is, when you use it to teach kids, you turn them off of poetry for the rest of their lives. They hate it, after struggling to figure out what’s being said.

    • Thank you very much.

      • Thank you for replying I’m a homeless poet/ writer I’ve alota writings Think If could send ya something think you could possibly understand my matter helping me somehow For example here’s one of my poems The chains break away….!!!

        The despair of melancholy has taken a toll on me
        Homeless in the streets gettin’ shot at cos you homeless in the streets its not
        what you call life

        Sometimes I just wish I’d truly died on Nov 19 2018
        But I don’t make the calls of who gets to stay
        who gets to go

        Yes I get depressed I’ve a heart but I was dealt
        a stack of cards that never’d a spade It was all
        nothin’ but empty empty empty empty promises

        I’m judged by the cover night ‘n day people
        show their true colors when they got it all
        ‘n never worked for nothin’ in their life

        I’m in the wilderness ‘n my last resort to survive
        is eatin’ food from garbage cans or dumpsters
        before they sweep the streets

        I guess this is the real definition of being humble
        is to appreciate the little bit of things you’ve in life

        Especially when you livin’ in a 3rd world country
        I myself practically have nothin’

        This is beyond imagination beyond hard times
        Its no way to emerge
        Its no way to prevail in destitute conditions so
        my pain’s in the wind ‘n when the clouds form

        The chains break away w/ my tears from above
        that’ll never fade away….!!!

        Eternal Ink ™ © ® ♠
        Raw-n-Uncut ™ © ® ♠
        The Knowledge of Writing
        The conscious writer
        Silent Ink in Motion ™ © ® ♠
        Underground Writings
        All rights reserved
        All ink matters ™ © ® ♠
        Pages of My Life ™ © ® ♠
        breakthehinges@gmail.com

  7. I think this is a wonderful poem. Heartfelt and true. I wish you could get your work together and find a way to publish your work. I’m sorry about your situation. You obviously have a way to communicate, so get your poems together and work with what you have because this is a great poem. If you can get noticed, you may get the proper help you need. Wherever you live, find out how your government can help you…if that’s even possible.

  8. Billy Fraser says:

    This so speaks to me… I love writing and have been an online poet for almost 10 years. Often I have found that the in crowds have not accepted me because I won’t write in obscure deliberately verbose language. The simplest poems often are the easiest and most pleasurable to read.

    • Thank you. I couldn’t agree more. If poems are too twisted, confusing, I don’t read them. To me, poetry should say what it means. That’s how communication takes place. If I want to do puzzles, I’ll do crosswords. I’m so happy that poetry is reaching more people nowadays. Most people won’t even look at it because of the way it used to be written. That’s a shame and they are missing out on so much. It’s not like it used to be. Poets are telling it like it is, in language that can be understood. Unfortunately, many children are taught to hate poetry in school, where it’s being taught with too many rules and graded harshly, which makes kids despise it and never look at it again. Sometimes I think it’s being done on purpose, because poetry says a lot in few words and that makes it dangerous to the status quo.

  9. You put my thoughts into words. Love this, incredibly articulate.

  10. meher bhatia says:

    your work is so beautiful, and i understand the value of a platform such as this. i, too, am only able to publish my work on my blog, and you have worded the value and personal connection one has to their work seamlessly.

    • What a kind and generous thing to say. Thank you so very much. I agree that Word Press/blogging allows us to get in touch with each other in a positive and creative way. 🙂 Thank you again.

  11. littleaprilshower says:

    Yes agreed! Poetry is life itself!

  12. damonjebb says:

    And not to mention, do we ever read it as the poet had it in his or her head?

    • I don’t know if we ever know what any artist had in mind, no matter their medium. It’s true…the meaning belongs to the viewer.

      • damonjebb says:

        I guess that’s true, I often think I might know what a songwriter means only to hear or read an interview to find they didn’t mean anything of the sort. I took from it what I wanted.

      • That’s what art is…it’s all up to us, the viewers. Even when the songwriters TELL people they are wrong about what they think they are saying, no one cares, they just believe what they want to believe. Perfect example, PUFF THE MAGIC DRAGON by Peter, Paul and Mary. Not a song about drugs. They have said it a million times. A children’s song. But everyone still thinks it’s about drugs. And visual art is even more like that. We all see completely different things when looking at anything, let alone art. The artist just has to let it go and know that people see who THEY are. LOL Just the way it is. None of us can get out of our own heads.

  13. Ken W. Simpson says:

    Poetry is an expression of ideas and thoughts in words with certain values that are linked by definition, cadence and rhythm. In other words a poem should be a pleasure to read. If it jars it won’t be enjoyable to read. This doesn’t mean a poem should be a confection. It must say something to the reader that resonates – dramatically, ironically, humorously or meaningfully. I don’t think children should be taught metrical poetry. It is too stiflingly academic for young minds. There is much too much rote teaching already and not enough thinking.

  14. antonia_ says:

    Wonderful poem

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