In contemporary times, a new form of poetry has begun to seep into our everyday consciousness. These types of poems, labeled “Instapoetry”, are posted on social media sites such as Twitter, Tumblr or, as the name suggests, Instagram. However, their distinguishing feature is their common format and themes. The composition of instapoetry lacks the eloquence found in conventional poetry. It also lacks emotional and analytical depth and does not adhere to the standards of mainstream poetry. Therefore, instapoetry sucks.
Instapoetry is shallow; it uses direct, catchy lines and stanzas that are only there to entice and not to provoke questions or make the reader think. This type of poetry requires little thought in both reading and writing and is therefore easy to consume. Its structure usually takes no more than half a page, but the content it provides often covers heavy and complex topics, ranging from harrowing personal experiences to a range of social issues. As such, emotions play an important role in instapoetry as they provide people with a creative outlet to express themselves and their thoughts, but the way people write these proclaimed poems is handled in such a simple way that the message and the emotional depth of the pieces fall flat.
For example, Rupi Kaur, a widely acclaimed instapoet whose audience resides primarily on Instagram, writes in one of her posts:
if you were born with the weakness to fall you were born with the strength to rise
The message of this poem is easily found: one must learn to be strong and to overcome the difficulties of life. The meaning it tries to convey is profound, but the writing is so direct that all it takes is four short lines, without literary devices or figurative language that offers a deeper perspective of the poem’s purpose, to understand the meaning. Its transparency as well as the simplicity of its format is what defines Kaur’s poetry as instapoetry rather than traditional poetry.
Moreover, instapoetry does not adhere to the standards of poetry, often to the point that it almost seems as if the author put little or no effort into writing it. There is a lack of rhetorical devices that might amplify the theme that instapoets are trying to convey, leaving little space for readers to interpret the meaning. It leads readers on a straight path, and while that may be one of its appeals – that individuals may find it easy to quickly read the poem and grasp its meaning twice as fast – it does not invoke thoughts. introspective.
However, some people may argue that poetry is subjective and therefore instapoetry should be categorized under the umbrella term poetry, rather than getting rid of the appellation entirely. However, while there are many ways to define poetry, there are obviously works that should not be called poetry. This is most apparent in one-line “poems”, which are less than twenty words. Although it is structured as a quote, some people online still recognize and recognize it as poetry, which it is not. Some other forms of poetry written similarly to these one-liners would be those that use lines with a limited number of words with simple diction.
In an excerpt from The princess saves herself in this one by Amanda Lovelace:
i’m pretty sure you have s t a r d u s t running through those v e i n s — women are some kind of magic
Lovelace’s writings should not be titled as poems; it’s not poetry if all a writer has to do is press enter after each line, which is meaningless and dull in both content and writing style. It’s just a short sentence in stanza form, and it doesn’t contain any emotion as it reads. The only thing running through the veins of this poem is banal platitude. Authentic poetry should require more thought than randomly placing spaces between letters to accentuate appearance or placing one word per line to give the piece a poetic feel. These types of poetry are like Tumblr back in 2014, when most of those self-proclaimed, anxious 13-year-old teenage poets tagged their posts with #poetry or #I’m 14 and that’s profound. Simply put, poetry like this shouldn’t be called poetry at all due to the fact that it most likely requires little thought and lacks fluidity compared to the real ones.
In conclusion, instapoetry should not be regarded as conventional poetry. — because is it really poetry if this is all that’s written?