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Revise Your Poetry!

Revise Your Poetry!

The first completed draft of your poem is only the beginning. Poets often go through several drafts of a poem before considering the work “done.”

To revise:

Put your poem away for a few days, and then come back to it. When you re-read it, does anything seem confusing? Hard to follow? Do you see anything that needs improvement that you overlooked the first time?

Often, when you are in the act of writing, you may leave out important details because you are so familiar with the topic. Re-reading a poem helps you to see it from the “outsider’s perspective” of a reader.

Show your poem to others and ask for criticism. Don’t be content with a response like, “That’s a nice poem.” You won’t learn anything from that kind of response. Instead, find people who will tell you specific things you need to improve in your poem.

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greenHow is originality fostered?

1. By personal difficulties, particularly in childhood, that have been worked through. Analyse and meet these difficulties.

2. By unswerving self-honesty. Ask yourself: is this what you really hoped to write? Could you not dig deeper into the wellsprings of the poem?

3. By starting afresh, expanding your repertoire with new techniques and new themes.

4. By pacing yourselves, drawing up timetables of writing that extend and build on previous accomplishments.

5. By working in related fields: writing novels, short-stories, articles: particularly where these unlock new perspectives and energies.

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William Wordsworth, the subject of the poem. P...

Image via Wikipedia

by Karen Miner (guest blogger)
Rummaging through poetry’s tool box we find lots of tools to help us express ourselves originally. Previously I discussed the use of metaphor; today let’s explore another tool – “simile.”

The Britannica Concise encyclopedia defines simile as: “an explicit comparison between two different things, actions, or feelings, using the words ‘as’ or ‘like’, as in Wordsworth’s line: “I wandered lonely as a cloud.”

Metaphors differ from similes in that the two objects are not compared, but treated as identical: The phrase “The snow was a blanket over the earth” is a metaphor. Contrast the previous metaphor with this simile: “The snow lay soft as a down comforter upon the ground.” It would be difficult to read the works of the masters without finding examples of simile within some of his/her poems. A common example is:

A Red, Red Rose
by Robert Burns

O my luve’s like a red, red rose,
That’s newly sprung in June;
O my luve’s like the melodie
That’s sweetly played in tune.

The similes shout for attention! Love is like a rose, love is like a melody…a simple thought and yet Mr. Burns burrowed into immortality with such simple tools as similes. How then can we expand our writing using simile as a unique fingerprint on our own poetry? A simple exercise is to begin by choosing the noun that indicates your poem’s theme. Let’s try it together. Assume we are writing about a tsunami.

Noun: Tsunami. With me? Great! Now let your mind roam…what are some words a tsunami elicits? Don’t over-think it; quick! Sudden, Water, Rushing, Fear, Screams. Good! Now expand those words to similes: Sudden as a sneeze, Water tall as trees, Screams exploding like bombs, Rushing like a linebacker.

You’ve assimilated the common descriptive words used for a tsunami, sculpted them, and molded a personal framework upon which to hang the rest of your poem. Give it a try…get wild and weird. Go where the reader least expects! Please share your experience with simile, offer an example from your own work, or just say hello!

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IMG_0054 лето ушло

Image by alubavin via Flickr

 
~ pronounced pae-neh-SEE-eh (noun) – A remedy for everything, for all problems or difficulties; a cure-all, a catholicon. From Latin “panacea,” a herb Romans believed could cure all diseases. The word was borrowed from Greek panakeia “universal cure,” the feminine of the adjective panakeios “all-healing” from pan “all” + akos “cure.”

The Greek adjective pan “all” also appears in Pandaemonium, the all-demon city in the Hell of Milton’s ‘Paradise Lost.’ It is productively used to create adjectives like “pan-Arab,” “pan-African,” “pan-American,” whose abbreviation, “Panam” underlies the name of Panama. “Pan” can also be seen in panegyric “elaborate oration of praise” from Greek panegyris “public festival,” originally based on pan- + agora “assembly” + -ikos “ic.”

I’ve read on many poets in the past few years and found that a lot of them had great trials and turmoil’s in their past. Some even being in asylums and committing suicide. Join me here in reading and discovering more about our great writers of the past. Then turn that knowledge to our on usage and advantage. So with that being said, what I’m hoping to provide in this blog is a “Panacea”, a cure all for poets fighting depression, going on a wild roller coaster ride of hills and valleys, writers block, and various other ailments…

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Bottled Up Sentiments Blog
Bottled Up Sentiments

I would like to welcome Bottled Up Sentiments, our latest blog addition to our growing contributors.  Click on the image to visit this beautifully designed blog!

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Visit Bruce's Blog

Bruce Dobson

 

I would like to welcome Bruce Dobson to our group.  Bruce posts his poetry on his own blog.  Click on the image to visit his blog.  His blog is also listed on our Links Page under Poetry Blogs.

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In view of the Haikus popularity in the West, it’s surprising that the Than Bauk is not more popular. It consists of three lines of four syllables that should be witty. The nickname for this form of poetry, could be “Stairway”, because of the rhyme steps through the poem. This is the basic rhyme scheme:

O. O.
O. a
O. O. a. O
O. a. O. b

You can see from this that it forms a descending step, and at this point it can be terminated. You have twelve syllables to work with, and it could be very hard work. It could be much easier if a longer poem were made. If this is the case, then the practice is that the last syllable of the third line starts the next descent as shown
below:

O. O. O. a
O. O. a. O
O. a. O. b
O. O. b. O
O. b.
O. c
O. O. c. O
O. c. O. d. etc.

FTRA
(Freight Train
Riders of America)

Down by the rails
soup in pails, hot
train
wails, main line
life is fine, see
cheap wine, the world
in a whirl:
life
unfurled bedroll
place with soul. Sleep
the goal: seek
life
options rife call
your strife constricts
but it picks us
and
sticks on you
confined blues mode
he rues mundane
on this plane
tied
life’s pain to vent
the rails went off
and sent away
boxcars
sway free
no pay to stay
FTRA

(Dana Rowe)

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