Thursday, June 2, 2016

Response to a Question on Quora

This is a response to the question, "What is poetic?" on Quora:  Basically, a poem wants to show you reality rather than blandly tell about it. As I say in a poem: “I’ll write my story so deep in myself / no one will hear it in my voice.” It says how something feels rather than simply saying what it feels. It’s okay to tell a little, but mostly you should show. A poem is naturally musical. It isn’t clunky. It flows. I think of “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” by T.S. Eliot. A poem dances and bristles with vivid imagery. The dancing and the bristling go hand-in-hand. One way to achieve a poetic that dances and sings is to vary the lengths of your sentences. Writing a long sentence then a short sentence helps the poem move. There’s a lot more I could say, but I think that is enough for now.

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