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Cyia
10-02-2009, 02:57 AM
... that poetry is sort of a dead market, and most agents won't touch it (which would lead one to assume that most people won't read and/or buy it), yet so many self/vanity pubbed books are poetry?

Personally, I can't stand poetry, and never felt compelled to write it beyond what I was assigned in school, but there's a TON of the stuff out there in self-published form. If that many people find it cathartic, and if that many people want to put it in a book, then why is it such a dwindling genre?

Is it because so much poetry is "moon in June" style cliche?

Is it because the people who write the stuff ONLY want to write it and therefore no one actually wants to buy/read it?

I'm well aware that vanity published books are garbage more times than not, but usually, the number of books in a given genre seems to follow the current trends. (Lots of vampires, etc.) So why is there no trend in commercial publishing for poetry?

Salis
10-02-2009, 03:06 AM
My personal feeling is that poetry was never a proper medium. It's a type of prose with static rules (or, just a really weird type of prose when you get into poetry with no rules), not an artform unto itself like writing.

It fell out of fashion in the same way most fads fall out of fashion. Might as well ask why you don't see a lot of silent films these days.

blacbird
10-02-2009, 03:12 AM
... that poetry is sort of a dead market, and most agents won't touch it (which would lead one to assume that most people won't read and/or buy it), yet so many self/vanity pubbed books are poetry?

Personally, I can't stand poetry,

You've just answered your question.

caw

Cyia
10-02-2009, 03:13 AM
You've just answered your question.

caw

No I didn't. Obviously there are thousands of people who enjoy writing the stuff. You'd think that would mean there's a market for it, but there's not. So... what gives?

blacbird
10-02-2009, 03:20 AM
No I didn't. Obviously there are thousands of people who enjoy writing the stuff. You'd think that would mean there's a market for it, but there's not.

Because hardly anybody reads it, other than the people who wrote it. You are in the mainstream when you say "Personally, I can't stand poetry," and you perfectly define the commercial market situation for it.

A corollary is that a lot of people view "poetry" as being easier to write than almost any other literary form. Any ol' body can put seventeen syllables together and get a haiku, right?

Doesn't mean it's a good haiku, of course, but it's a damn sight easier than putting 80,000 words together to get a novel. Hell, I can rip off a couple dozen of them haiku devils before lunch.

caw

katiemac
10-02-2009, 03:26 AM
... that poetry is sort of a dead market, and most agents won't touch it (which would lead one to assume that most people won't read and/or buy it), yet so many self/vanity pubbed books are poetry?

I think agents don't go for poetry because you have to be proven first. It's like selling short stories ... you don't just jump in and sell an anthology. You sell to magazines, to anthologies, etc., then when you have a following or lots of credentials, that's when you go the book route. I suspect the majority of self/vanity pubbed poetry books are writers who never really got that following or are too impatient to submit their work individually from the start.

That's my initial thought, but I could be very, very wrong.

virtue_summer
10-02-2009, 04:21 AM
Poetry is still popular. It's called music lyrics. It seems that way to me, anyway. As access to music has gotten easier and more portable the popularity of poetry seems to me to have gone down. And most people (especially young people) writing poetry tend not to be huge fans of poetry as a written medium but do tend to be big music fans. I mean look at how popular rap was/is. It's essentially spoken poetry. Written poetry is still a valid art form but it's a niche market. The poets for the mainstream market are lyricists, rappers, and singer-songwriters.

William Haskins
10-02-2009, 04:38 AM
Because hardly anybody reads it, other than the people who wrote it. You are in the mainstream when you say "Personally, I can't stand poetry," and you perfectly define the commercial market situation for it.

A corollary is that a lot of people view "poetry" as being easier to write than almost any other literary form. Any ol' body can put seventeen syllables together and get a haiku, right?

Doesn't mean it's a good haiku, of course, but it's a damn sight easier than putting 80,000 words together to get a novel. Hell, I can rip off a couple dozen of them haiku devils before lunch.

caw

great post.

american poetry, for the most part, did it to itself. it pulled itself into an incestuous orgy in the ivory tower of academia.

Ken
10-02-2009, 04:49 AM
... some say rap is poetry. So looked at in that way poetry is in its hay day.
In regards to my own reading habits, I haven't read altogether that much poetry, and the poems I've read are from years and centuries back. But what I have read has made a lasting impact and influenced me immensely. Great poetry is that powerful. It emblazons its stanzas on the soul.

William Haskins
10-02-2009, 04:57 AM
there is some truth to the notion that poetry has migrated into music, greeting card, commercial jingles. but that's not all the story, and there's no sense in deceiving ourselves that it is.

there were hymns and drinking songs and political lampooning chants in days of yore. poetry still existed.

Medievalist
10-02-2009, 05:00 AM
great post.

american poetry, for the most part, did it to itself. it pulled itself into an incestuous orgy in the ivory tower of academia.

Yep. Pretty much. There are modern poets I read and like--but damn, they're hard to find.

There's a reason I spend so much time reading poetry before c. 1950.

Ken
10-02-2009, 05:07 AM
... true enough. I personal don't totally buy into the metamorphosis, either. But the fact that mass audiences are responding to poetically sung songs does indicate that the public retains an appetite for poetry. So there is something to be optimistic about, perhaps, for those who write poetry.

Better change your cut off date to 1956, Medi.
"Howl." ;-)

dgiharris
10-02-2009, 05:12 AM
great post.

american poetry, for the most part, did it to itself. it pulled itself into an incestuous orgy in the ivory tower of academia.

This has some truth to it. The (modern) poems lauded as great poems by 'academia' tend to be so obscure and meaningless that I question the judgement of those that like it.

yes, poetry is subjective, but if I pull a few poems from the greats, you can see and feel the power of their poetry. And even if you don't like it, you can at least appreciate it.

But some of the poems lauded by academia, especially poems that win some of these contests are just horrid. It feels as if Academia purposefully picks these horrid poems just so they can justify their own superiority since us mere mortals can't understand why the poem is so good. :Shrug:


... some say rap is poetry. So looked at in that way poetry is in its hay day.

Very true. People who don't listen to rap think rap is all about the bitches and hos and the loud bass beats.

But rap is poetry set to music and has dominated the music scene around the world in every language so that should say something.


In regards to my own reading habits, I haven't read altogether that much poetry, and the poems I've read are from years and centuries back. But what I have read has made a lasting impact and influenced me immensely. Great poetry is that powerful. It emblazons its stanzas on the soul.

Completely agree.

Question? Has poetry ever had a time where it was the preferred art?

I love poetry for the imagery and thoughts it provokes. When I read a great poem, I literally 'think' and 'feel' emotions and thoughts i've never felt before. Its like seeing a 'new' color outside the human spectrum.

But for some reason, it's fallen out of vogue and the mainstream hardly reads it beyond school assignments.

Mel...

Kurtz
10-02-2009, 05:19 AM
... some say rap is poetry. So looked at in that way poetry is in its hay day

Homer was originally set to the lyre, just like Lil Jon is set to god knows what nowadays.

After listening to Only Built For the Cuban Linx Part 2 I am pretty confident as to the future of poetry, at least for the next few years. And Melvilles Battle Pieces is one of the most important pieces of poetry for this century. So is Virgil and Lucan, but that's just me.

EDIT: Nas: "I rap in front of more niggas than in the slave ships", tell me this isn't as good, or better than Byron.

Ken
10-02-2009, 05:23 AM
... feel the same way myself about obscurity in poetry, Mel. Some is okay. And there are poems I understand only a fraction of which I still dig very much, like The Wasteland. Still, I wish poets in general would be less obscure and express what they're saying more directly. And then at times I wonder if the fault lies with me, and that I'm just not swift enough to grasp the meaning, which other readers seem to be able to in a first read. Oddly, poems from the past like The Ancient Mariner and The Prisoner of Chillion are much less obscure, which is one of the reasons why I turn to them more.

Ken
10-02-2009, 05:34 AM
EDIT: Nas: "I rap in front of more niggas than in the slave ships", tell me this isn't as good, or better than Byron.

... I've never reported anyone to a Mod before, but I am going to do so for the first time with this post of yours. I'm honestly sick of your racist language, lamely couched in observations as this. The truly sad thing is that you are really intelligent, but wasting it away by a fixation on being perverse.

poetinahat
10-02-2009, 05:36 AM
To the OP:

If you don't like poetry and aren't interested in it, why would you bother to criticise it?

Do you find all poetry that easy to lump into one group, and given that you don't read it, how do you come to that conclusion?

If you don't read it, what makes you think you have the background to understand it, much less judge it?

The insinuation that self-publication is evidence of a work's lack of quality is specious. Would you also say that only Top 40 music is worth listening to?

There are several genres very actively discussed here in which I have utterly no interest. But I damn well don't stipulate that they're of no use to anyone. And, since I don't read them, I don't presume to generalise about them.

Kurtz
10-02-2009, 05:38 AM
... I've never reported anyone to a Mod before, but I am going to do so for the first time with this post of yours. I'm honestly sick of your racist language, lamely couched in observations as this. The truly sad thing is that you are really intelligent, but wasting it away by a fixation on being perverse.

Okay, cool. I was just quoting a man making reference to the hideous injustice of slavery. And I wasn't being sarcastic either by the way.

KTC
10-02-2009, 05:41 AM
Let's trash on the poets. They seem fair game. Have at it.

KTC
10-02-2009, 05:45 AM
Poetry is not a money making machine.

But it is a passion for a lot of people. And when it is done well it is well done. It can be quite beautiful...like a song. It could take your breath away.


People often self-publish poetry so that they have something to sell at poetry readings. And WHO DO YOU THINK GOES TO POETRY READINGS? People who hate poetry, maybe?

NO.

People who enjoy it.


I have never self-published a book of poetry...in the traditional sense of self-publishing (that sounds weird, but I know what I mean...and hey, that's what matters).

BUT I have put together some home-made poetry chapbooks to distribute at my poetry readings.

How much money have I made on these? Over the course of the last 3 or 4 years...probably about $2000.00 or so.

I'm NOT impressed with the 'it's okay to attack certain people' mentality of this thread.

But maybe it's just me. Maybe my poetic sensitivity has been stepped on.

Don't tell me what the poets are doin'...

poetinahat
10-02-2009, 05:48 AM
Eh, poets are people who like the beauty of words. Not all writers are like that, apparently.

KTC
10-02-2009, 05:50 AM
Eh, poets are people who like the beauty of words. Not all writers are like that, apparently.

I know, eh! Exactly what I thought. Words are so incredibly beautiful...and like bursts of perfection when every single word is made to count. God...if I could roll in words, I would. Screw the downy comfort of duvets...words is where you'll find me.

CaroGirl
10-02-2009, 05:53 AM
I quite like good poetry. It's a mystery to me why I don't seek it out and read more of it. I sometimes read the poetry in the literary journals I buy but not always. I'm making an effort to share some of the poetry I've studied with my kids, like the Rime of Ancient Mariner, Shakespeare's plays and sonnets, Blake's The Tyger (I LOVE that one), and so on. Although it's all old, I don't believe old poetry is the only poetry.

KTC
10-02-2009, 05:55 AM
Here's the secret to my everyday writing practice.


ALWAYS BEGIN WITH POETRY. When I wake up at 4:30 every single morning to write for an hour...before I do anything else, I commune with words through the writing of a poem. Only after that wafer of poetry am I ready to immerse myself in my writing for that hour.

CaroGirl
10-02-2009, 05:58 AM
Here's the secret to my everyday writing practice.


ALWAYS BEGIN WITH POETRY. When I wake up at 4:30 every single morning to write for an hour...before I do anything else, I commune with words through the writing of a poem. Only after that wafer of poetry am I ready to immerse myself in my writing for that hour.
I've tried writing poetry. I'm not very good at it.

If you're up at 4:30 am, why aren't you in bed by now? Are you one of those super humans who needs only an hour of sleep a night or something?

KTC
10-02-2009, 05:59 AM
I've tried writing poetry. I'm not very good at it.

If you're up at 4:30 am, why aren't you in bed by now? Are you one of those super humans who needs only an hour of sleep a night or something?

Yes. Actually my sleep schedule is extremely important to the rest of my life. Any more or any less and the balance is lost...and so is all else.

Kurtz
10-02-2009, 06:01 AM
If you're up at 4:30 am, why aren't you in bed by now? Are you one of those super humans who needs only an hour of sleep a night or something?

Buddhists are freaky, they can increase their internal temperatures by like 20 degrees just if they feel like it.

My poetry is embarrassing. I've got about three hundred sonnets written over the past three years, but they are all awful. Most are just re-writings of each other as well.

poetinahat
10-02-2009, 06:02 AM
I know, eh! Exactly what I thought. Words are so incredibly beautiful...and like bursts of perfection when every single word is made to count. God...if I could roll in words, I would. Screw the downy comfort of duvets...words is where you'll find me.
See? The OP is right; you're no kind of writer, my friend. You're only a poet.

KTC
10-02-2009, 06:03 AM
ONLY a poet. Story of my life. (-;

Pat~
10-02-2009, 06:15 AM
... that poetry is sort of a dead market, and most agents won't touch it (which would lead one to assume that most people won't read and/or buy it), yet so many self/vanity pubbed books are poetry?

Personally, I can't stand poetry, and never felt compelled to write it beyond what I was assigned in school, but there's a TON of the stuff out there in self-published form. If that many people find it cathartic, and if that many people want to put it in a book, then why is it such a dwindling genre?

Is it because so much poetry is "moon in June" style cliche?

Is it because the people who write the stuff ONLY want to write it and therefore no one actually wants to buy/read it?

I'm well aware that vanity published books are garbage more times than not, but usually, the number of books in a given genre seems to follow the current trends. (Lots of vampires, etc.) So why is there no trend in commercial publishing for poetry?

I haven't read the whole thread, so forgive me if this has been said before, but the reason the agents won't touch it is simply because it "doesn't sell." (This quote from innumerable agents/publishers at writers' conferences, some of whom actually confessed to "loving" my poetry.) Simple mathematics, especially in a hurting economy. That would also likely explain, then, why so many poetry books are self-published. Not because the writing is necessarily substandard, but b/c unless you are a poet laureate, it is the only way to compile a written collection of your poetry in book form for selling or gift-giving.

poetinahat
10-02-2009, 06:18 AM
ONLY a poet. Story of my life. (-;
Actually, I stand corrected - you, you are NOT only a poet, but that's another story (er, no pun intended).

Medievalist
10-02-2009, 06:20 AM
Question? Has poetry ever had a time where it was the preferred art?.

Actually, yes, for most of written history. The rise of prose for more than anything than court documents/church document/legal documents, etc. to use in fiction is fairly modern--it's late Middle ages, early Renaissance.

The first really well known prose fiction is the medieval romance; the first in English to make any headway is Malory's Arthurian fiction--and great chunks of it are lifted out of the work of earlier poets.

The other thing about poets, and money, when poets stopped being paid in booze--and no, I'm not being snide, I'm being factual--they almost stopped being paid, at all.

KTC
10-02-2009, 06:22 AM
Actually, yes, for most of written history. The rise of prose for more than anything than court documents/church document/legal documents, etc. to use in fiction is fairly modern--it's late Middle ages, early Renaissance.

The first really well known prose fiction is the medieval romance; the first in English to make any headway is Malory's Arthurian fiction--and great chunks of it are lifted out of the work of earlier poets.

The other thing about poets, and money, when poets stopped being paid in booze--and no, I'm not being snide, I'm being factual--they almost stopped being paid, at all.

I was once given two beers by total strangers after a reading. Two for doin' it. I don't drink. I poured them into my pockets and said I'd spend it later.


just kidding.

about pouring them into my pocket.

the rest really happened.

Medievalist
10-02-2009, 06:23 AM
That would also likely explain, then, why so many poetry books are self-published. Not because the writing is necessarily substandard, but b/c unless you are a poet laureate, it is the only way to compile a written collection of your poetry in book form for selling or gift-giving.

Poetry hasn't been a money-making endeavor since the end of the Victorian era. And there's a reason, beyond education, that most of those poets, and those earlier, were upper class/aristocratic in social class. They could afford to be poets.

Spenser, Shakespeare, Marlowe, Shelley, Byron, Wordsworth, Keats, Coleridge--all had sources of income that were not tied to their poetry production.

The poets in the canon, the poets who win prizes, all have alternative sources of income--patrons, estates, church income, and often, spouses.

Medievalist
10-02-2009, 06:28 AM
Chaucer may have invented the genre of the "begging poem":

THE COMPLAINT OF CHAUCER TO HIS PURSE

Ye be my lyf, ye be myn hertes stere,
Quene of comfort and of good companye:
Beth hevy ageyn, or elles moote I dye!

Now purse, that ben to me my lyves lyght
And saveour, as doun in this world here,
Out of this toune helpe me thurgh your myght,
Syn that ye wole nat ben my tresorere;
For I am shave as nye as any frere.
But yet I pray unto your curtesye:
Beth hevy agen, or elles moote I dye!



Lenvoy de Chaucer

O conquerour of Brutes Albyon,
Which that by lyne and free eleccion
Been verray kyng, this song to yow I sende;
And ye, that mowen alle oure harmes amende,
Have mynde upon my supplicacion!


Chaucer is begging his patron, Henry IV, to pay him the promised monies -- and, as well, the promised kegs of beer the crown was supposed to grant him, every year.

There's a glossary for the odd bits here (http://english.edgewood.edu/chaucer-poems/chaucer_purse.htm).

C.bronco
10-02-2009, 06:29 AM
Not enough people go to poetry readings. A lot of people have no idea what it's like now. No one uses Elizabethan English these days.

I've seen some awesome poets live. Some of them literally took my breath away.

It's amazing how a poem can capture a piece of life in so few words.

What's the problem then? There's no Freaking Marketing!

Perks
10-02-2009, 06:33 AM
It's amazing how a poem can capture a piece of life in so few words.

I think this is what negates the sentiment in post #2. Poetry, in most forms, is very different from prose in discipline.

C.bronco
10-02-2009, 06:36 AM
P.S.:
You've gotta see this cat live:
http://jackwiler.com/
and this one (won the Pulitzer, BTW) http://www.poets.org/poet.php/prmPID/22
and this one: http://famouspoetsandpoems.com/poets/thomas_lux

and Betty Lies, God I love Betty! Probably one of the coolest women I've ever met. http://pplpoetpodcast2008.wordpress.com/tag/betty-lies/

KTC
10-02-2009, 06:38 AM
My favourite poet is a Canadian. Barry Dempster. He rocks. I went to a reading of his a couple of weeks ago. He is VERY successful. He was reading from his new book...and he has another book coming out in early spring. Every time he reads, he reads to a full house. Wonderful reader too...which is important.

brokenfingers
10-02-2009, 06:42 AM
No I didn't. Obviously there are thousands of people who enjoy writing the stuff. You'd think that would mean there's a market for it, but there's not. So... what gives?Writing poetry isn't about writing for a market or others, as much as it is a form of self-expression.

Poetry is about emotion, the writer's emotion. With really good poetry, the writer is able to tap into universal feelings or adeptly transfer their own experience so the reader feels it as if they felt it themselves.

That's what poetry is about.

People write poetry because they have feelings that need expressed and that's how they choose to do it.

C.bronco
10-02-2009, 06:45 AM
Last time I saw Komunyakaa read was at Cooper Union in NYC. Man, if we had been allowed to wave lighters, I think it would have happened. It was standing room only. Everyone would have bought a t-shirt afterwards if they had been available.

KTC
10-02-2009, 06:45 AM
Writing poetry isn't about writing for a market or others, as much as it is a form of self-expression.

Poetry is about emotion, the writer's emotion. With really good poetry, the writer is able to tap into universal feelings or adeptly transfer their own experience so the reader feels it as if they felt it themselves.

That's what poetry is about.

People write poetry because they have feelings that need expressed and that's how they choose to do it.

This was very well said. I'm sometimes a bit too passionate to worry about the thought process...but you said it all so well. The words the pluck themselves up out of the screen and scream at me:

EMOTION
UNIVERSAL
FEELINGS
EXPRESSED

Well said, BF.

Medievalist
10-02-2009, 06:46 AM
I think this is what negates the sentiment in post #2. Poetry, in most forms, is very different from prose in discipline.

It is. And yes, there's still amazing poetry to be found in modern lyrics--and I note, that poetry in Indo-European languages has mostly been supported by music, of one sort or another.

I hated, loathed, and detested poetry in school. It wasn't until I stumbled over short lyrics as in an old anthology that I realized that, gosh, poetry doesn't have to suck; it's just the way it's taught that often sucks.

Perks
10-02-2009, 06:48 AM
People write poetry because they have feelings that need expressed and that's how they choose to do it.I think that poetry is less about feelings, necessarily, than it is about a particular concept in the crosshairs. Sometimes this will be a feeling, but not always, by any means. Sometimes it's an image or an idea.

Prose has a tendency to relay a more complete narrative or information, where it seems to me more often that poetry looks to pin down something more specific, and more concisely.

Of course, that all goes straight out the window with epic poetry and verse plays.

C.bronco
10-02-2009, 06:59 AM
A Story
by Li-Young Lee

Sad is the man who is asked for a story
and can't come up with one.

His five-year-old son waits in his lap.
Not the same story, Baba. A new one.
The man rubs his chin, scratches his ear.

In a room full of books in a world
of stories, he can recall
not one, and soon, he thinks, the boy
will give up on his father.

Already the man lives far ahead, he sees
the day this boy will go. Don't go!
Hear the alligator story! The angel story once more!
You love the spider story. You laugh at the spider.
Let me tell it!

But the boy is packing his shirts,
he is looking for his keys. Are you a god,
the man screams, that I sit mute before you?
Am I a god that I should never disappoint?

But the boy is here. Please, Baba, a story?
It is an emotional rather than logical equation,
an earthly rather than heavenly one,
which posits that a boy's supplications
and a father's love add up to silence.

Credit: Copyright © 1990 by Li-Young Lee. Reprinted with the permission of BOA Editions, Ltd., www.boaeditions.org.

C.bronco
10-02-2009, 07:26 AM
Certain poems have resonated in my life, over and over. I even can attribute certain eras to certain poems. Poems have made me rethink my journey, and gain a better understanding of those whose lives are vastly different in certain aspects. They have defined what I was going through when I wasn't expecting it. They have created epiphany.

Poems have given me a greater understanding of the human condition, and my own life. Lines have given me inspiration to keep going, warnings, and affirmation.

If successful literature creates a better understanding of our lives, then poetry does no less.

We are in Renaissance of poetry now, but only a few avid fans like me are aware of it. There is a vast variety of voices, forms, and subjects. It is a shame that it isn't made available to the public like so many other art forms are by the media.

Cyia
10-02-2009, 08:14 AM
I said I didn't like poetry myself; I didn't trash it. I asked a simple question - why do so many people like to write it, yet there's no available mass market for people who like to read it.

blacbird
10-02-2009, 10:15 AM
It's amazing how a poem can capture a piece of life in so few words.


It's amazing how a GOODpoem can capture a piece of life in so few words.

It's also amazing how much utter claptrap poetry is out there masquerading as important literature, a situation magnified by the current ease of self-publication.

The latter explains the market situation about as clearly as anything can.

caw

Bartholomew
10-02-2009, 10:38 AM
Poetry still exists. It's just evolved a little.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aI4JLa0hbUw

blacbird
10-02-2009, 11:34 AM
As an aside, I don't think that the advent of "poetry slams" has done the interest of poetry any damn good at all. You want real claptrap, try reading on paper some of the schidt that wins prizes at poetry slams.

caw

TrixieLox
10-02-2009, 02:06 PM
Oh, stop with the doom and gloom ya'll!

I think poetry's still pretty popular in the UK, our bookstores have quite a few shelves dedicated to it and poets such as Carol Ann Duffy and Benjamin Zephaniah are 'kinda' household names over here. It's studied with gusto in classrooms and lecture halls the country over and we have some fabulous professors teaching it (eg. my old professor, Martin Dodsworth, God bless him!). Poetry bounces off the walls of our churches (at weddings and, alas, funerals), is scrawled over the bricks of our cities and kids are doing some amazing stuff with poetry on YouTube etc. We see it in films, we hear it in tunes... like Duffy says, 'poems in town centres are like a light in the window.' It's still inspiring kids to write (like a certain Tony Harrison inspired a particular 'working class' TrixieLox gal to write ;-).

In other words, it's out there already, so it kinda transcends publishing... sure, I'd like to see more of it published but it's not a dying art form. Not int he UK anyway...

Apsu
10-02-2009, 02:19 PM
Meh, I tried to write an argument in defense of poetry, but i can't. I just don't feel educated well enough about it to say more than I do and have always loved it. And yeah, I agree songs are poetry, and my favorite modern poets are songwriters. Though I've been reading it aloud and listening to it read aloud for pleasure throughout my life.

The last poetry books I checked out from the library were Leonard Cohen's, though I prefer his song lyrics.

Modern poets whose words I love (who have put out albums within the last few years) would be David Tibet, Morrissey, Edward Ka-Spel, and Nick Cave. My experience is limited as it has to be, but I think they're some of the greatest poets alive.

CaroGirl
10-02-2009, 04:23 PM
Many lyricists are poets. I'm not talking about Shakira's stupid lying hips. I'm talking about true modern poetry in lyrical form. Listen to songs written by Gord Downie (Tragically Hip) and Neil Finn (Crowded House) and you'll hear what I mean. Not to mention poets who are also lyricists, like our transcendent, beautiful Leonard Cohen.

Music makes poetry more accessible.

KTC
10-02-2009, 04:27 PM
I'm obsessed with Gordon Downie. Every time I listen to a Hip song, I have to write poetry. His poetry is good too. I have one collection he put out a few years ago--Coke Machine Glow.

Perks
10-02-2009, 04:31 PM
Many lyricists are poets. I'm not talking about Shakira's stupid lying hips.

I think I shall never forgive Gwen Stefani for rhyming 'chamomile' with 'sex appeal'.

If poetry is dying, it's her fault.

James81
10-02-2009, 05:00 PM
I've tried writing poetry and it almost always comes out as a prose.

I have a little green notebook that I wrote poetry in back in college and the results was like 1 or 2 real poems and the rest were more like "parables" or zen scriptures or something.

Lady Ice
10-02-2009, 10:18 PM
Watch 'Dead Poet's Society!'

Poetry crosses over into novels, and especially plays. Most writers can knock out a load of poems.

KTC
10-02-2009, 10:24 PM
Watch 'Dead Poet's Society!'

Poetry crosses over into novels, and especially plays. Most writers can knock out a load of poems.


Please provide us with the facts on this statement. I have often heard the opposite. Writers in this thread have admitted as much. That is a throwaway statement that means nothing. NOT every writer has poetic leanings.

Lady Ice
10-02-2009, 10:34 PM
Poems are essentially a collection of words employed with feeling (or just cleverness). If you (writer) can write novels, plays, or short stories, you can probably write a poem.

I don't mean necessarily 'Green grows the grass/love is a burning flower' but you could write a poem of some description.

quickWit
10-02-2009, 10:35 PM
Most writers can knock out a load of poems.

Yes, but are they any good? I'd bet not.

All poets are writers, but few writers are truly poets.

KTC
10-02-2009, 10:35 PM
All poets are writers, but few writers are truly poets.

This.

katiemac
10-02-2009, 10:36 PM
Poems are essentially a collection of words employed with feeling (or just cleverness). If you (writer) can write novels, plays, or short stories, you can probably write a poem.

I don't mean necessarily 'Green grows the grass/love is a burning flower' but you could write a poem of some description.

Hm, I'm going to have to disagree, just as someone who writes poetry cannot necessarily deliver a novel or short. Or a novel writer writing shorts, and vice versa.

KTC
10-02-2009, 10:40 PM
Hm, I'm going to have to disagree, just as someone who writes poetry cannot necessarily deliver a novel or short. Or a novel writer writing shorts, and vice versa.

And though I just agreed with teh bunneh about all poets being writers, I do also agree with this. I know a poet whose words blow me away EVERY time. Her/His attempt at novel writing fell flat. It was too disjointed...almost like it was broken up into bursts of thought. It just didn't work. This is not to say that He/She can't do it...I can't say that after reading only one example...but unless they try a different approach to their prose writing, they will not succeed. So I do believe this to be true too.

aadams73
10-02-2009, 10:44 PM
Yes, but are they any good? I'd bet not.

All poets are writers, but few writers are truly poets.

Agreed. And what KTC said, too.

I can knock out good prose without much problem. But poetry? Not a easy thing for me at all. I have to be inspired and it has to be purely emotional or I can't get anything on the page besides silly limericks. Poetry takes advantage of every single word. If one is wrong or out of place, the whole thing fails. It's an art, and I truly am in awe of those who write the poetry that moves me.

aadams73
10-02-2009, 10:47 PM
Hm, I'm going to have to disagree, just as someone who writes poetry cannot necessarily deliver a novel or short. Or a novel writer writing shorts, and vice versa.

Yes, exactly. And it's no different to any other craft/art. I have a friend who can cook the most amazing meals, but ask her to bake pastries/dessert etc. and she comes unglued. She can't do it.

We all have our strengths and weaknesses within our chosen fields.

willietheshakes
10-02-2009, 10:48 PM
If you're up at 4:30 am, why aren't you in bed by now? Are you one of those super humans who needs only an hour of sleep a night or something?

We have a club. Well, more of a support group, I suppose...

Hey, we should make t-shirts!

RG570
10-02-2009, 11:02 PM
I wasn't aware that poetry was dead.

For example, if I go to the Radio-Canada site today, one of the first things I'm hit with is the Festival International De La Poésie. There are no shortages of small presses putting out highly acclaimed work. There is no shortage of innovative poetry being sold, like Christian Bok.

If by "poetry is dead" you really mean "it's not being spoonfed to us by Wal*Mart and the New York entertainment cartel" and you actually have to take an interest in it to find the good stuff, then I guess it's dead. But it's there and it's not going anywhere.

Nivarion
10-02-2009, 11:10 PM
IMHO, its because it (modern poetry) doesn't say much about anything. Its all politically correct and silent. Old poetry that made you question things, that was good. It spoke volumes if a few short words.

Perks
10-02-2009, 11:10 PM
If by "poetry is dead" you really mean "it's not being spoonfed to us by Wal*Mart and the New York entertainment cartel" and you actually have to take an interest in it to find the good stuff, then I guess it's dead. I think perhaps I like you quite a lot.

Perks
10-02-2009, 11:14 PM
Poems are essentially a collection of words employed with feeling (or just cleverness). If you (writer) can write novels, plays, or short stories, you can probably write a poem.

oi. Good god, I disagree with you.

Really good poetry is to language what Pilates or boxing-training is to physical fitness.

Really good poetry is the point at the end of a freshly sharpened pencil. Ain't nothing finer or more useful, as I see it. Bad poetry makes my teeth hurt.

Prose is my normal medium, because I think I've mastered top-tier mediocrity. Great poems make me want to chew off my own typing fingers.

KTC
10-02-2009, 11:19 PM
I wasn't aware that poetry was dead.

For example, if I go to the Radio-Canada site today, one of the first things I'm hit with is the Festival International De La Poésie. There are no shortages of small presses putting out highly acclaimed work. There is no shortage of innovative poetry being sold, like Christian Bok.

If by "poetry is dead" you really mean "it's not being spoonfed to us by Wal*Mart and the New York entertainment cartel" and you actually have to take an interest in it to find the good stuff, then I guess it's dead. But it's there and it's not going anywhere.

I was in my car about an hour and a half ago...listening to poetry readings on CBC Radio One. There was a cowboy poet...I loved his stuff. Can't remember his name. There were several readings. I quite enjoyed it.

Sidebar: if my wife was in the car...we would not have been listening to CBC Radio. Not everybody drools over poetry the way I do. (-;

KTC
10-02-2009, 11:21 PM
IMHO, its because it (modern poetry) doesn't say much about anything. Its all politically correct and silent. Old poetry that made you question things, that was good. It spoke volumes if a few short words.


The things that are being said in this thread are making my head spin. You've GOT to be kidding me.

MGraybosch
10-02-2009, 11:25 PM
My personal feeling is that poetry was never a proper medium. It's a type of prose with static rules (or, just a really weird type of prose when you get into poetry with no rules), not an artform unto itself like writing.

Actually, poetry was an artform unto itself that predates writing. All of the great epics -- Gilgamesh, the Iliad, the Odyssey, the Ramayana, the Aeneid, the Metamorphoses, the Divine Comedy, Paradise Lost -- are all works of narrative poetry. They're epics. And the oldest epics arose out of oral tradition, where rhyme and meter were important tools of the poet's trade that allowed him to either remember the tale -- or compose it on the spot.

Nivarion
10-02-2009, 11:27 PM
The things that are being said in this thread are making my head spin. You've GOT to be kidding me.

I've only heard a slight handful of good modern poems. Most (the not good ones) are "Oh I'm sad," About a current state of emotions. Not about the emotion, Not about what causes them, or anything of any weight that will last beyond the point if was written.

MGraybosch
10-02-2009, 11:28 PM
Poetry crosses over into novels, and especially plays. Most writers can knock out a load of poems.

And in my case, they would all suck harder than every movie Uwe Boll ever made. I know this from experience; I've tried writing poetry. The only work I'm willing to expose to the public is a blasphemous haiku:

No kingdom shall come
Let my will be done on earth
To Hell with Heaven!

KTC
10-02-2009, 11:31 PM
I've only heard a slight handful of good modern poems. Most (the not good ones) are "Oh I'm sad," About a current state of emotions. Not about the emotion, Not about what causes them, or anything of any weight that will last beyond the point if was written.

Unless, of course, you're a reader of poetry--a purchaser of books of poetry--a person who attends poetry readings and festivals.

I wonder how narrow your vision is. Your brushstrokes are enormous! "Most" are not, as you say, "Oh I'm sad" poems. How many 'modern poems' have you read? Seven? Ten? A hundred?

Rarri
10-02-2009, 11:32 PM
I find myself reading poetry a lot, but in a 'category' that is - i think - sometimes forgotten. My toddlers books are full of poetry; it's not earth shattering but there are still good poets out there and all right, the poems are aimed at two year olds but still they take skill to create. For example, Aliens love underpants is a favourite of ours at the moment and damn, simple as the concept is, i don't doubt that it took a lot of skill and time to create. Michael Rosen, often to be found in the childrens section, is an amazing poet; from Going on a bear hunt to Sad. So, i don't think poetry is dead or AWOL, i think for the moment the focus of the paying market may have moved.

All that said, i've written poetry occasionally but hell, it only comes with Godfather like thunder-plunks of inspiration; it'd take me til my old age to write enough for a small anthology. So i really admire those that write poetry with any kind of frequency.

willietheshakes
10-03-2009, 12:37 AM
IMHO, its because it (modern poetry) doesn't say much about anything. Its all politically correct and silent.

Okay, admit it -- you're just screwing with us now, right? Because you can't POSSIBLY mean this.

Well, unless you don't actually READ modern poetry...

Nivarion
10-03-2009, 12:46 AM
I read it until I got sick of it. I may have just hit a rotten strain.

I'll give. Who should I look at?

Perks
10-03-2009, 12:59 AM
I read it until I got sick of it. I may have just hit a rotten strain.

I'll give. Who should I look at?William Haskins (http://www.poisonpen.net/poetry/) from right here on AW, if you don't want to have to go too far.

Poetinahat is also one of my alltime favorites, and not just because he's here on AW - I'm not that lazy, as well as Stew21 and KTC, Godfather, Feiss, Trumancoyote, and I'm absolutely sure I'm missing some because I'm highly medicated at the moment.

Really, some terrific, moving, inspiring poetry to be had just a cyber-stone's throw away.

Perks
10-03-2009, 01:07 AM
The Absolute Poet's Collection is here. (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=30943) (Password is 'citrus')

I can't swear it's up to date for all the poets I love here, but it's better than a poke in the eye for starting.


The UK's new Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy (http://famouspoetsandpoems.com/poets/carol_ann_duffy), is really quite good, too. I've been enjoying what I've read of hers.

And Simon Armitage (http://www.simonarmitage.com/), as well.

Oh lord. I've done rambled.

veinglory
10-03-2009, 01:08 AM
I think people are talking about random poetry they see online, rather than--for example--actively looking at the poetry section of the library or bookshop, or selectively seaking out the good stuff online. That is kind of like saying modern art sucks based on the graffiti at your local bus stop.

Nivarion
10-03-2009, 01:27 AM
I think I stand corrected and have to apollogize to the good poets around here. I was just looking at the crap.

I didn't like all of the poems I've read so far but there have been a higher enough frequency of ones I did like. (In the links) A reversal of the rates I was seeing else where.

I should have listened to my own signature.

Lady Ice
10-03-2009, 05:13 PM
And in my case, they would all suck harder than every movie Uwe Boll ever made. I know this from experience; I've tried writing poetry. The only work I'm willing to expose to the public is a blasphemous haiku:

No kingdom shall come
Let my will be done on earth
To Hell with Heaven!

I quite like that :)

I love archaic poetry because that took a deal of great skill. We can't all be Keats, yet I bet a lot of people could write poems just as good as the modern poets do these days.

AnonymousWriter
10-03-2009, 06:15 PM
I quite like that :)

I love archaic poetry because that took a deal of great skill. We can't all be Keats, yet I bet a lot of people could write poems just as good as the modern poets do these days.

Write us a poem, then.

HelloKiddo
10-04-2009, 12:04 AM
It's interesting you start this topic now because I'm just reading Break Blow Burn by Camille Paglia as well as few of her interviews in which she talks about modern poetry. She mentions that:

1.) Poetry is no longer being taught well in schools and the public isn't learning to appreciate it. I agree. Not that loving poetry is something that can properly be taught, but I feel that if schools gave the subject more attention students would develop more of an appreciation for the art.

2.) Modern poets are not writing for the general public, but rather to impress their fellow writers. Agreed. Some of the modern poems I try to read are so highly esoteric they're virtually impossible for the casual reader to understand. They might as well be written in a foreign language.

Before I get snipped at by the poetry lovers on this board, let me just say: I'm on your side. I like poetry, I wish it were more popular than it is and I do try to read modern poets.

KTC
10-04-2009, 12:08 AM
It's interesting you start this topic now because I'm just reading Break Blow Burn by Camille Paglia as well as few of her interviews in which she talks about modern poetry. She mentions that:

1.) Poetry is no longer being taught well in schools and the public isn't learning to appreciate it. I agree. Not that loving poetry is something that can properly be taught, but I feel that if schools gave the subject more attention students would develop more of an appreciation for the art.

2.) Modern poets are not writing for the general public, but rather to impress their fellow writers. Agreed. Some of the modern poems I try to read are so highly esoteric they're virtually impossible for the casual reader to understand. They might as well be written in a foreign language.

Before I get snipped at by the poetry lovers on this board, let me just say: I'm on your side. I like poetry, I wish it were more popular than it is and I do try to read modern poets.

I think I'll snip anyway. At least you said SOME. I hate that shit that gets written just to display the words the poet knows. Yes...some of it is like that, to be sure...but still, this seems like a broad brushstroke any way.

Rarri
10-04-2009, 12:38 AM
1.) Poetry is no longer being taught well in schools and the public isn't learning to appreciate it. I agree. Not that loving poetry is something that can properly be taught, but I feel that if schools gave the subject more attention students would develop more of an appreciation for the art.

I find that rather strange, in Scotland at least, poetry features alongside prose and drama in English, especially in Highers/Advanced Highers. Perhaps - a big perhaps - it's the poetry that's being studied rather then whether poetry is being taught well. We studied Ian Crichton Smith as one of our poets and his work still sticks with me now. Sorry, that was a bit of a tangent, but i'm glad this thread is here, it's been the incentive i need to start reading poetry again (especially Ian Crichton Smith).

RickN
10-04-2009, 12:41 AM
Personally, I can't stand poetry, and never felt compelled to write it beyond what I was assigned in school, but there's a TON of the stuff out there in self-published form. If that many people find it cathartic, and if that many people want to put it in a book, then why is it such a dwindling genre?

Writing cathartic poetry might make the poet feel better, but it doesn't sell books and publishers want to sell books.

Like you, lots and lots of people can't stand to read poetry, ergo there's no market.

As far as rap being the new poetry, maybe for some people. I just can't picture Robert Frost:

"The woods are lovely, dark, and deep, motherfucker."

or Shelley:

"I am great OZYMANDIAS," saith the stone,"
"So step your punk ass back from my bitch!"

Then again, I may not be a rap fan.

Medievalist
10-04-2009, 12:42 AM
It's interesting you start this topic now because I'm just reading Break Blow Burn by Camille Paglia as well as few of her interviews in which she talks about modern poetry.

Camille Paglia is in no position to talk; she's one of the worst faculty members I've ever seen in the classroom.

Horrible. Really really wretched--and she wouldn't know a close-reading it if bit her on the ass.

Kurtz
10-04-2009, 12:55 AM
"The woods are lovely, dark, and deep, motherfucker."

or Shelley:

"I am great OZYMANDIAS," saith the stone,"
"So step your punk ass back from my bitch!"

Then again, I may not be a rap fan.

Yeah not all hip hop is like this, there is much more to it than bitches and bling. Saul Williams, Blue Scholars, Roots Manuva etc. Hell, even the RZA is poetic at times. As much as I love Lil Jon et al, music like his does obscure some real genius.


...Asiatic black hebrew
The year two thousand and two, the battle's filled with the Wu
Six million devils just died from the Bubonic Flu
Or the Ebola Virus, under the reign of King Cyrus
You can see the weakness of a man right through his iris
Un-loyal snakes get thrown in boilin lakes
of hot oil, it boils your skin...

MGraybosch
10-04-2009, 01:24 AM
I quite like that :)

Thanks. Just don't ask me to write anything else.

HelloKiddo
10-04-2009, 01:38 AM
Camille Paglia is in no position to talk; she's one of the worst faculty members I've ever seen in the classroom.

Horrible. Really really wretched--and she wouldn't know a close-reading it if bit her on the ass.

Really, you work with Camille Paglia? I'm kinda bummed to hear that because I'm actually enjoying the book, and I liked Sexual Personae as well. Some of her views are a little...out there, definitely, but I still find her very entertaining.

gothicangel
10-04-2009, 02:02 AM
Well my first successes [and biggest to date] have been with poetry.

I love Colonization in Reverse [Bennett]; Dover Beach [Arnold] to name but a few. I've just discovered Chaucer's Troilus and Crysside [and rhyme royal!]; Dryden and Pope - yes all through academia.

Oh yes, the Earl of Rocheter's [John Wilmot] Restoration poetry is enough to make Jackie Collin's blush!

So yes, I was a poet first - which might explain my infuriating obsession with words and style.

RickN
10-04-2009, 03:12 AM
Yeah not all hip hop is like this, there is much more to it than bitches and bling. Saul Williams, Blue Scholars, Roots Manuva etc. Hell, even the RZA is poetic at times. As much as I love Lil Jon et al, music like his does obscure some real genius.

True, but that is not the image that the industry takes such huge pains to promote. Bitches and bling (I really like that phrase), guns and violence sell. Too much of the good work, the real genius as you say, gets painted over by the broad brush of shootings and club fights news articles.

Phaeal
10-05-2009, 10:24 PM
Poetry had a long history of being the dominant form of literature. The ascendance of prose fiction is a relatively recent event. So, um, poetry's no fad.

I think most people are more interested in story than in the sheer beauty of words and form. Poetry used to be the way to tell a story, but the short story and novel have proven more accessible and attractive to the modern reader.

Good (and great) poetry distils experience and thought and observation and (yes) even story into an intense liquor. A little of this stuff can go a long, long way. And, as it was originally meant to do, it sticks in the memory. I still know "Whan that Aprile with its shoures soote," and "Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow/Creeps in this petty pace from day to day" and "Brown skeletons of leaves that lag the forest brook along" and even "Hwaet! We Gardena/in geardagum//theodcyninga/thrym gefrunon//Hu tha aethelingas/ellen fremedon."

Izz
10-06-2009, 12:20 AM
Watch 'Dead Poet's Society!'

Poetry crosses over into novels, and especially plays. Most writers can knock out a load of poems.Broad, sweeping, ill-informed statements like this are a big reason, in my mind, why poetry doesn't have as big a market share as it used to (as well as what haskins said re the american poetry establishment). People think that anybody who can write a sentence can write a poem.

'I can write an essay. Poems are much shorter than essays. Therefore i can easily write poetry.'

'I've written a novel. Poems are much shorter than novels. Therefore i can write poetry.'

Wrong!

Sure, anybody can write a 'poem,' as in, write words down and say 'this is poetry.' Doesn't mean it is. Doesn't mean it's a good poem. Someone saying something they've written is poetry doesn't mean anything. And yes, people who write good novels can write good poetry, but that doesn't mean they will, and it doesn't mean that doing so is a foregone conclusion.

Poetry is an art and craft completely separate to novel writing and short fiction writing and any other form of writing. Sure, some of the skills used in novel writing can be used in poetry writing (and vice versa), but that doesn't mean they're the same thing.

To write poetry well requires a ton of effort and practice and love.

To write novels well requires a ton of effort and practice and love.

But the practice for both is a very different thing.

iz, trying very hard not to be pissed off by another 'is poetry dead' thread

blacbird
10-06-2009, 12:25 AM
Yes, but are they any good? I'd bet not.

Exactly my point, earlier in the thread. I'd also venture that far too many writers, of all kinds of stuff, regard everything they write as good. With poets (or people who fancy themselves poets, if you prefer), this misconception gets magnified because poems are inherently short, therefore requiring less time per item for the crappy stuff. Ergo, more of them.

caw

Phaeal
10-06-2009, 05:49 PM
'I can write an essay. Poems are much shorter than essays. Therefore i can easily write poetry.'

'I've written a novel. Poems are much shorter than novels. Therefore i can write poetry.'

Wrong!

Wrong, indeed. I look at it more this way: Does it take less skill to carve an exquisite netsuke than it takes to carve a monumental statue? No, no, no. Some of the skills will be the same, some very different. But size has nothing to do with the absolute level of difficulty, moment per moment.

Of course, it IS way easier to write a crummy poem than to write a crummy novel. That crummy novel will take a lot more hours to turn out. And cost you a lot more in paper and printing.

Poetry appears small the way neutron stars appear small. Crowding huge amounts of matter into a tiny space creates astonishing densities and gravities. To return to the netsuke-monument metaphor: one blemish on a netsuke can destroy it. One blemish of the same size on the monument will likely go unnoticed -- hell, lots of blemishes of the same size.

Poetry's a dangerous vehicle for the neophyte!

KTC
10-06-2009, 06:18 PM
Poetry's a dangerous vehicle for the neophyte!

I once rode a poem all the way to Kalamazoo. Of course, I was running on fumes the last hundred miles or so.

Phaeal
10-06-2009, 06:38 PM
I once rode a poem all the way to Kalamazoo. Of course, I was running on fumes the last hundred miles or so.

Please tell me you were at least wearing your helmet.

KTC
10-06-2009, 06:40 PM
Please tell me you were at least wearing your helmet.


I wore a thought-bubble. They offer much padded protection.

Stew21
10-06-2009, 06:51 PM
I find it so interesting that so many people have an opinion on this topic while it's in Roundtable but when the very same thing was posted in the poetry forum, none of them showed up. :)



Why is that?

KTC
10-06-2009, 06:54 PM
I find it so interesting that so many people have an opinion on this topic while it's in Roundtable but when the very same thing was posted in the poetry forum, none of them showed up. :)



Why is that?


The poetry forum is off limits to real people, Trishka.

Priene
10-06-2009, 07:13 PM
I once rode a poem all the way to Kalamazoo. Of course, I was running on fumes the last hundred miles or so.

This post is a miniature poem in its own right.


Is there an Implausibility Bot loose on the boards? Because some of the comments in this thread are downright amazing.

TrickyFiction
10-06-2009, 08:33 PM
Poetry still exists. It's just evolved a little.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aI4JLa0hbUw

So, true story: I loaded this video to watch and I was all disappointed because it had no sound. "Why does the sound not work?" I said to myself. I paused it because the song on the radio was a little bit of awesome and I wanted to hear it first, and then I noticed that the "stereo" sound was gone. So I started the video again. It was the same song that was playing on the radio, just a little off this time. Yeah. They had started at the exact same moment. The sound in the video worked fine; it was just matching the radio exactly.

I've never heard the song before, but wow. Pretty song. Weird experience.
And I am one of those who believes poetry went from music to the page and back to music again. It isn't lost. You just have to look for it.

Priene
10-06-2009, 09:34 PM
Of course, it IS way easier to write a crummy poem than to write a crummy novel.

No. You don't get to write junk and call it poetry. It's just junk.

KTC
10-06-2009, 09:54 PM
I once wrote a poem, but the wheel fell off.

Phaeal
10-06-2009, 10:06 PM
No. You don't get to write junk and call it poetry. It's just junk.

LOL. When did God appoint a Poetry Czar to decide what was worthy of the exalted title of poetry and what would be cast into the outer darkness of junk?

Guess I forgot to read the paper that day. In my world, you can call any scramble of words you want "poetry." And you know, most of the world couldn't give a flying rat's ass.

I myself find that flying rats (and their asses) are fond of writing poetry. Some of it's not that bad, either. Or was I thinking about the SYW Query squirrels?

Priene
10-06-2009, 10:20 PM
In my world, you can call any scramble of words you want "poetry."

Then your world has no idea what poetry is.


And you know, most of the world couldn't give a flying rat's ass.

I myself find that flying rats (and their asses) are fond of writing poetry. Some of it's not that bad, either. Or was I thinking about the SYW Query squirrels?

I have no idea what you're talking about here.

KTC
10-06-2009, 10:24 PM
Felt like a slap in the face with a cod to me, Priene. Or, in other words, an insult.

Apparently flying rats, as well as their asses, write poetry.

Priene
10-06-2009, 10:33 PM
The problem with poets is they're so ethereal and unearthly they don't even understand when they're being insulted. I must pay closer attention,

KTC
10-06-2009, 10:39 PM
LOL. I didn't feel insulted as much as I felt fascinated. It would be interesting to see an ass write poetry. Well, not that I'd actually want to watch it unravel...but I'd like to hear what an ass has to say.

Celia Cyanide
10-06-2009, 10:52 PM
LOL. I didn't feel insulted as much as I felt fascinated. It would be interesting to see an ass write poetry. Well, not that I'd actually want to watch it unravel...but I'd like to hear what an ass has to say.

This reminds me of a William Burroughs quote, but I'd better skip it.

KTC
10-06-2009, 10:59 PM
I once skipped a William Burroughs quote. Did the double-dutch over it. But I tripped.

Izz
10-06-2009, 11:54 PM
but I'd like to hear what an ass has to say.I am reminded of a painting i once thought about painting (i haven't, so the world can breath again)...

A canvas full of ass-prints, all horizontal and in rows, except for one in the top row that's almost vertical. Entitled 'Objection.'

But i couldn't find a donkey small enough to fit multiple times onto one sheet of canvas.

Michael J. Hoag
10-07-2009, 12:12 AM
LOL. I didn't feel insulted as much as I felt fascinated. It would be interesting to see an ass write poetry. Well, not that I'd actually want to watch it unravel...but I'd like to hear what an ass has to say.
Paging...

On sitting bones I sit all day,
In thongs and jeans I waste away,

And when I see the light of day,
In porcelain holes I'm forced to stay!

When all I really want to do
is make a precious little poo.

For surely I have never heard
a poem lovely as a....

Michael J. Hoag
10-07-2009, 12:14 AM
Oh my! I should never take that thing out in public!

Seriously, I don't think poetry is dead at all. Poetry today is diverse and thriving, in our popular music, sure, but also in poetry readings and small journals that find devoted audiences. Nobody's going to make a bunch of money doing it, but hell, neither did that Shakespeare guy, and he was an ok poet.

Phaeal
10-07-2009, 12:25 AM
Man, try to make a flying rat's ass joke around here...

;)

Actually, this is an ancient Greek conundrum, posed by Socrates to his students:

Is it the rat that flies (thus, of necessity, bringing his ass along)?

OR

Is it the rat's ass that flies (in which case, where's the rest of the rat?)

Plato and Aristotle got into the biggest fight ever over this one, detailed by Plato in the Lost Dialogue (lost because Alcibiades stole it and made copies for all his friends, which they used to snicker over behind the Parthenon.)

Later Newton acquired on of the lost copies of the Lost Dialogue and experimented with flying rats and flying asses until Mrs. Newton made him stop.

Einstein tried to work the flying rat's ass into the Special Theory of Relativity but gave up in despair.

You can read more about the FRA and its deep pertinence to the history of art and science in my upcoming monograph.

Michael J. Hoag
10-07-2009, 12:35 AM
Man, try to make a flying rat's ass joke around here...

;)

Actually, this is an ancient Greek conundrum, posed by Socrates to his students:

Is it the rat that flies (thus, of necessity, bringing his ass along)?

OR

Is it the rat's ass that flies (in which case, where's the rest of the rat?)

Plato and Aristotle got into the biggest fight ever over this one, detailed by Plato in the Lost Dialogue (lost because Alcibiades stole it and made copies for all his friends, which they used to snicker over behind the Parthenon.)

Yeah, yeah, yeah, where did you pull that thing out of?

KTC
10-07-2009, 12:48 AM
Man, try to make a flying rat's ass joke around here...

;)

Actually, this is an ancient Greek conundrum, posed by Socrates to his students:

Is it the rat that flies (thus, of necessity, bringing his ass along)?

OR

Is it the rat's ass that flies (in which case, where's the rest of the rat?)

Plato and Aristotle got into the biggest fight ever over this one, detailed by Plato in the Lost Dialogue (lost because Alcibiades stole it and made copies for all his friends, which they used to snicker over behind the Parthenon.)

Later Newton acquired on of the lost copies of the Lost Dialogue and experimented with flying rats and flying asses until Mrs. Newton made him stop.

Einstein tried to work the flying rat's ass into the Special Theory of Relativity but gave up in despair.

You can read more about the FRA and its deep pertinence to the history of art and science in my upcoming monograph.


Nobody cares. And, hey...what does it have to do with poetry and the discussion at hand. I read your post to be an insult to poets. As in, "any idiot can write poetry...including the idiot's ass." You keep flexing all this stuff that you know...who cares? I mean, really. If it's not on topic, it doesn't matter. I don't give a shit about a flying rat and its relationship to Aristotle and Plato. How many times are you going to spout off these facts? How many times are you going to try to impress the world at large with your knowledge?

POETRY.

oneblindmouse
10-07-2009, 12:52 AM
Why diss poetry? If you don't like it, (perhaps because you haven't the sensibility to understand or appreciate it?) leave it to those of us who do.

AnonymousWriter
10-07-2009, 12:53 AM
Nobody cares. And, hey...what does it have to do with poetry and the discussion at hand. I read your post to be an insult to poets. As in, "any idiot can write poetry...including the idiot's ass." You keep flexing all this stuff that you know...who cares? I mean, really. If it's not on topic, it doesn't matter. I don't give a shit about a flying rat and its relationship to Aristotle and Plato. How many times are you going to spout off these facts? How many times are you going to try to impress the world at large with your knowledge?

POETRY.

My love for you is like a red, red rose right now.

Izz
10-07-2009, 12:54 AM
Roses are red
KTC is blue
*insert pithy line here*
so rats to all of you!

Medievalist
10-07-2009, 12:55 AM
Really, you work with Camille Paglia? I'm kinda bummed to hear that because I'm actually enjoying the book, and I liked Sexual Personae as well. Some of her views are a little...out there, definitely, but I still find her very entertaining.

Not with her; I was a grad student and a member of staff.

I was completely underwhelmed, professionally and personally.

KTC
10-07-2009, 01:06 AM
My love for you is like a red, red rose right now.

Well, knowledge is wasted if not used wisely...is it not?

AnonymousWriter
10-07-2009, 01:27 AM
Well, knowledge is wasted if not used wisely...is it not?

Of course. I love you because you had the guts to say what I was thinking.

KTC
10-07-2009, 04:00 PM
Just read this in guidelines and laughed my arse off:


Payment: We currently pay with a free issue. This will change when poetry undies.

From the aptly named: POETRY IS DEAD MAGAZINE (http://www.poetryisdead.ca/)

Cyia
10-07-2009, 04:58 PM
LOL. I didn't feel insulted as much as I felt fascinated. It would be interesting to see an ass write poetry. Well, not that I'd actually want to watch it unravel...but I'd like to hear what an ass has to say.

:ROFL:

For this, I love you. :D

Phaeal
10-07-2009, 06:02 PM
Nobody cares. And, hey...what does it have to do with poetry and the discussion at hand. I read your post to be an insult to poets. As in, "any idiot can write poetry...including the idiot's ass." You keep flexing all this stuff that you know...who cares? I mean, really. If it's not on topic, it doesn't matter. I don't give a shit about a flying rat and its relationship to Aristotle and Plato. How many times are you going to spout off these facts? How many times are you going to try to impress the world at large with your knowledge?

POETRY.

I never meant for the original flying rat's ass joke to read as an insult to poetry. The second rat's ass treatise was just extemporaneous riffing driven by too little sleep and my admittedly quirky sense of humor.

As for trying to impress the world with my knowledge, you know, you may be right. Funny I should still try to do it, considering how little the world has ever been impressed.

Plus, Seymour would be so disappointed in me.

Sorry the poor rat's ass tread on your toes.

KTC
10-07-2009, 06:05 PM
You're a conundrum, man. I so like you...and yet those posts burn my ass just a little every time. I'm always impressed by your humor...just not your knowledge. Please don't take that the wrong way. (-;

dolores haze
10-07-2009, 06:22 PM
I love knowledge. And I love poetry.

Phaeal
10-07-2009, 06:37 PM
You're a conundrum, man. I so like you...and yet those posts burn my ass just a little every time. I'm always impressed by your humor...just not your knowledge. Please don't take that the wrong way. (-;

I am no man (cue Eowyn, tossing helmet aside and letting long blond hair fly). Perhaps that will help you with the conundrum. Or not. As the little girl at the meat counter taught Buddy, gender is an illusion.

KTC
10-07-2009, 06:39 PM
gender is an illusion.

Not on the outside...what with the trinkets and baubles and stuff...but on the inside? Definitely.

Priene
10-07-2009, 07:00 PM
Now the threat to poetry's been removed, shall we get back to doing what we do best? Like forming cliques and infighting.

KTC
10-07-2009, 07:40 PM
I once formed a clique. It was disbanded, due to in-fighting.

Priene
10-07-2009, 08:13 PM
All cliques should fall to infighting. It's like autumn following spring.

KTC
10-07-2009, 08:22 PM
I once followed spring. It lead me to autumn, via summer.

Phaeal
10-07-2009, 09:31 PM
Now I have a bunny about a spring that always leads into winter, bypassing summer altogether. It could even be a poem bunny. (Poem bunnies are dappled, whereas prose bunnies are solid colors. Or, occasionally, tiger-striped.)

Glory be to God for dappled things,
For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow... (http://www.poemtree.com/poems/PiedBeauty.htm)