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Poem in Bad Light -- Writer's Poke #225

I like poetry, although I think about 99% of it is probably crap.

To me, poetry must marry the beauty of language with the power of story. Poetry that simply hides meaning behind complexities... who needs it?

People love language, of this I am convinced. So why don't more people read poetry? Simple: most poetry is written by poets for other poets. In other words, most poets have purposely limited their audience. Those poets that wrote for a general audience, Robert Frost and Maya Angelou come to mind, are not considered to be among the "elite poets," at least by poetry snobs.

Real poems evoke real emotions. Take Theordore Roethke's "My Papa's Waltz" or Dylan Thomas' "Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night" or Sylvia Plath's "Daddy." If you've taken an English class or two in high school or college, I'm sure you've read these poems; but even if you have, why not go back and read them again?

Do you ever write in a way that excludes others? How might you develop a more inclusive style?

"Poetry is a way of taking life by the throat." -- Robert Frost


  1. Why would I, or most others, wish to develop a more inclusive style of writing? ... of thinking? ... Of acting?


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