10 reasons people hate poetry

Interesting item from Kevin Pocock over at Poejazzi, which I found out about because he linked my piece on walking away from it all. Much to think about there, but items #2 and #9 are near and dear to my heart. Also #5, which certainly describes me, as much as I hate to admit it.

By all means, take a couple of minutes and give it a read.

Categories: Arts/Literature

Tagged as:

7 replies »

  1. I don’t hate poetry. I love thee from the heights, breaths and depths my soul can reach.
    I love Elizabeth Barrett Browing. I understand her work and appreciate her passion. 🙂

  2. Haven’t you learned from ad jingles and Seuss,
    greeting cards, limericks, old Mother Goose,
    cheesy song lyrics from rock, soul and pop:
    ABBA to *NSYNC, Prince to ZZ Top,
    cheerleader calls, Broadway tunes, gangsta rap,
    endless drivel on Valentine’s Day crap?
    Haven’t you heard this truth millions of times?
    Poetry’s awesome… as long as it rhymes.

  3. sheehan! well done! i’ve argued to sam (and every other poetry snob out there,) that poetry’s more popular than ever–look at rap, which is pure poetry. it’s one little slice of poetry that people find difficult.

    • Dear lord. Rap is NOT poetry. It’s its own genre and plays by different rules, rules that have more in common with slam/spoken word than actual poetry. Not to say some of it isn’t good, but it ain’t poetry.

  4. it absolutely is poetry. greek poetry was recited to music.

    rules? seriously? in these days of free verse, what pray tell, are the rules?

    • I’m not talking about things like meter rules here. I’m talking about what works in one medium vs. what works in another. In addition to being a former poet, I have also written lyrics for music, and let me tell you, rap is a LOT more like that than it is poetry. And lyrics are NOT poetry.

      Here, go read these pieces, where I deal with the issue in a lot of detail:

      Again, I am not disparaging a form nor asserting that another form is better (even if I think it is). I’m just saying that they are a lot more different than people who haven’t done both sometimes assume. Poetry is, in the modern context (and by modern I’m talking about the last 500 years or so) a primarily written form. It can be read aloud and performed, but it is textual in its essence, not performative. Rap and rock and spoken word are essentially performative, on the other hand. There are times when brilliant poetry simply doesn’t work so well in performance, and by the same token a good 99% of the best spoken word or rock lyrics or rap are absolutely horrible on the page. They require rhythm and delivery to work.