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Passions in Poetry


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Member Elite
since 06-22-99
Posts 2442

0 posted 08-19-99 11:21 AM       View Profile for DreamEvil   Email DreamEvil   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit DreamEvil's Home Page   View IP for DreamEvil

I'm developing an interest in songwriting and would appreciate any information on the differences and similarities that exist between songs and poetry.

Shall I indulge in flights of fancy hampered by clipped wings?

Member Seraphic
since 05-20-99
Posts 24426
Cape Cod Massachusetts USA

1 posted 08-19-99 03:39 PM       View Profile for Nan   Email Nan   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nan's Home Page   View IP for Nan

When I'm teaching poetry to teenagers, I have them bring the lyrics to their favorite song (including "rap") to class - subject to my approval, of course..... then we analyze those lyrics just as we do a poem from their literature books....
One important thing about lyrics is - They have to conform to a specific meter... - I'm not sure what the administration thinks of it, though...

Nay, if our wits run the Wild-Goose chase, I am done:
For thou hast more of the Wild-Goose in one of thy wits,
Than I am sure I have in my whole five.
~ ˛1592 Wm. Shakespeare ~ Romeo & Juliet ~ ii. iv. 75

Poet deVine
Member Empyrean
since 05-26-99
Posts 25869
Hurricane Alley

2 posted 08-19-99 04:05 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

The difference between songs and poetry? Music.........
Member Rara Avis
since 08-02-99
Posts 9130
Purgatorial Incarceration

3 posted 08-20-99 10:32 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

Agreed with above. Music is the only thing that separates poetry from songs...except maybe the repetition usually accompanying the chorous of a song.

Sanity is the playground for the unimaginative.

since 07-22-99
Posts 476
Franklin, TN

4 posted 08-25-99 12:31 AM       View Profile for redwriter1   Email redwriter1   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for redwriter1

People ask me this question all the time.
It really depends on what genre of music you are thinking of writing. Rock, country, blues. etc.

Most have some pretty loose rules but mainly, I think the big difference is, poetry starts you somewhere and takes you to a conclusion. Songs can sometimes do that to, but the usual rule is : Say what you want to say, tell them why and then tell them again. All lines in a song are "supposed" to point back to the "hook" or the title.

If you would like to learn more. Try Great site with helpful hints. (smile)

**A dream is a wish your heart makes :)

Member Ascendant
since 08-13-99
Posts 6333

5 posted 08-29-99 02:27 AM       View Profile for Michael   Email Michael   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Michael

There is a bit more difference than expressed so far - depending on whose reading the poetry. Some believe true poems must have true rhymes - this is not the case with songs.

"oh, I've wandered so long,
baby, baby, wher've you gone."

This is called "assonance" - when the accented syllable on the last vowell sound matches, but the word doesn't ryhme.
Not a true rhyme but very popular and most definately acceptable in any song - other than the fact that this particular example sucks.

Most songs also contain a "chorus"
The main verse, usually containing the song's title - which is repeated at different intervals throughout the song.

Nan's partially right on the meter - that also would depend on the type of song. Almost all rap and a lot of country will have near perfect meter. All depends on the writer really.

If I can think of anything else I'll post it later but I can tell you this much - if your heart ain't in it - it will truly bomb. It's a lot easier to get away with a "flat, emotionless" poem than a song - that's because a song has to please more than just the eyes. You will have no problem songwriting with your talent though, overall, I find poetry a much more difficult challenge.

Good Luck

Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea

6 posted 08-29-99 09:59 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Well, I agree with everybody here, more or less. Rap is poetry (and from a poet's point of view, amazing rhythmic subtleties can be found there given the relative sameness of the beat itself). In other forms of popular music, however, the melody and repetition usually controls the sound of the words, not the other way around. This means the songs can depend less on the natural rhythms of the language -- they can get away with a lot more tweaking so to speak.

Poets can tweak too (through what's called promotion and demotion) but, it seems to me, this is actually a lot harder to do in poetry.

I've done both though. Both are easy to do. Both are hard to do well.

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