Example poetry

Poetry in motion | Cape Town Gazette

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been waiting for the Webb telescope my whole life. And the photos did not disappoint. After all, it’s not every day that we glimpse the dawn of time! What was truly amazing was the explanation that the first images captured an area of ​​the universe so small it looked like a grain of sand held at arm’s length. Just wow.

So naturally, I thought of the first line of William Blake’s “Augures of Innocence” (be honest, you did too): “To see a world in a grain of sand.” Lest you think I’m bragging, I don’t understand 99% of this, or any other Blake poem, but I’m pretty good at recalling random verses of stuff.

Although I’ve dabbled in poetry at various times in my life (you know: puberty, onset of mental illness, that sort of thing), I don’t consider myself a gifted poet. My most notable verses included the poem I wrote at age seven when JFK died (I’ll spare you the quotes), and the raunchy parody of Walt Whitman’s “O Captain My Captain” titled “O Superjock My Superjock” which I wrote for my high school newspaper, and which immediately endeared me to football coach Maloof (not).

I once read A LOT of poetry and had my favorites (Gerard Manley Hopkins, Robert Browning, Edna St. Vincent Millay). Over the past few years, the few opportunities I have had to read something deep and thoughtful, I have devoted to prose. But Evan rekindled my interest, as did Pat, my friend and yoga teacher. Ev writes terrific poetry and is a connoisseur of great writing. Pat gave me the task of suggesting a weekly reading for the end of class (so I usually choose a poem).

Guess what? There are some really great things being written these days. I used to thumb my nose at ‘free verse’, thinking the writer wasn’t smart enough to tackle villanelles or sonnets. But I really appreciate unstructured poetry more now, and I wonder if maybe as I get older I become a little less structured myself (no).

I like the “distilled” quality of a good poem: what would take me paragraphs, if not volumes, to say, is perfectly expressed in a few lines. It’s daunting, though, because with my blog, for example, I still feel like I can verbally smash my way to my point of view within the prescribed 500 words, whereas haiku doesn’t no prisoners.

It’s the summer of New Beginnings for me, and I’d really like to dive back into the world of meter and rhyme. I’ve heard that poets do serious banking! (maybe I was misinformed?) Even if there’s no money in it, I’ll give it a try and see where the syllables land.

And who knows? Some day in the future, I might also be quoted, and thus achieve literary immortality, just like my good buddy Blake.

“It was a dark and stormy night / I almost scared to death.”

Maybe it needs work?


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