View Full Version : Seeking advice for young poets

02-14-2006, 02:57 AM
Hello all,

I've recently launched a site for young poets called "Poetry FAQ: A young poet's guide to poetry and poetry writing" ( http://www.poetryfaq.com/ ) and am currently working on a new section with tips for young writers from experienced poets.

I would greatly appreciate any tips you have to offer, even just a sentence or two, that might help inspire young poets. Please provide your full name so I can properly credit you; if you also tell me the URL to your Web site, I can link to it.

You can either post below or e-mail me privately (inkygirl@gmail.com).

Thanks kindly!


William Haskins
02-14-2006, 03:34 AM
1. read poetry. this may sound like a no-brainer, but young poets who remain ignorant of what came before them are doomed to inhabit a very narrow sphere of influence and will be woefully limited in their perceptions of the possibilities of poetry. some good resources for reading quality work online:

(use the dropdown menu under "verse" and go nuts)

(great resource for experimental poetry from the beats, existentialists and other post-moderns)

(excellent list of poets and works)

(don't let the name fool you; they're not all american)

2. venture outside your own heart and head. personal poetry can be therapeutic, but it can be a dead end for the reader. this is not to say that you can't (or shouldn't) connect the natural or supernatural world to your own experience, but strive for something more than a description of how you feel.

3. develop an intimate understanding of the use, power and function of metaphor.

4. develop an intimate understanding of the use, power and function of metaphor.

5. develop an intimate understanding of the use, power and function of metaphor.

6. write every day. to use the analogy of the painter: it's not necessary to create a painting every day, but you should be sketching at every chance.

that's all i have. you may use anything that melts your butter. no credit necessary.


02-14-2006, 05:00 PM
Thanks SO much, William! I've posted your advice at:



William Haskins
02-15-2006, 02:05 AM
my pleasure. you can probably get some good stuff out of some of the other folks here, once they get over their shyness.

Albedo of Zero
02-15-2006, 02:55 AM
Experiment with words: Let nouns become verbs and let verbs act for uncharacteristic subjects.

- he puppydogged his way into my heart

- winter raindrops shiver down the pane

02-15-2006, 03:18 AM
Don't censor yourself; and don't be afraid to think bad things.

Explore sound and the lyricalness of language.

Make up words.

Lie about everything.

By hand, write down the poems of master poets whose work you love, then devour them so as to suck up and internalize their poetic potential.

Don't listen to me.

02-15-2006, 03:20 AM
To go along with William's advice to read poetry: Have a wide range of poetry in your knowledge bank. Try picking up some anthologies of regional poetry (One of my favorites is An Irish Anthology of Literature, published in 1940) or poetry by movement. We have so much to learn from those who've mastered language before us and so much potential to do the same when we understand poetry.

I love William's Rule #2. I'm still working on 3-5...

02-15-2006, 06:35 PM
Yay, thank you! I've added all your advice to: