How to Join Member's Area Private Library Search Today's Topics p Login
Main Forums Discussion Tech Talk Mature Content Archives
   Nav Win
 Discussion
 Philosophy 101
 A quote from Dana Gioa on poets
 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
Follow us on Facebook

 Moderated by: Ron   (Admins )

 
User Options
Format for Better Printing EMail to a Friend Not Available
Admin Print Send ECard
Passions in Poetry

A quote from Dana Gioa on poets

 Post A Reply Post New Topic   Go to the Next Oldest/Previous Topic Return to Topic Page Go to the Next Newest Topic 
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


0 posted 08-29-99 10:38 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

I thought this was interesting:

Literary etiquette demands that in mixed company poets pretend prosody is a dull subject. What genuine artist could possibly take those dusty Greek terms and mechanistic scansions seriously? Only pedants reduce art to arithmetic. Among their own kind, however, poets find prosody anything but boring. I have watched poets argue intemperately over a detail in scansion and witnessed others exhaust an evening disputing theories of versification. Free-verse poets desplay surprisingly little immunity for these fevers; no one, after all, likes to debate religion more than an aetheist. Has any recent topic raised tempers in the poetry world so high as the revival of rhyme and meter?


Any comments on this? Personally, I want more discussion of what you think makes a poem good, makes it work. I want to trade tricks and ideas, not hide in the mysticism of art.

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


1 posted 08-29-99 10:49 AM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

Brad! If you will peruse the Q&A and Alley Forums, you will find several discussion links that aroused passions around here....the difference between free verse and rhymed verse being one of them.
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


2 posted 08-29-99 11:07 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Thanks for the quick response! I've tried to look at some of the debates going on (by no means all -- perhaps this is all old hat to everyone here). My main concern, however, is metered versus unmetered poetry, rhymed poetry, from my point of view, is a category in metered poetry. Rhyme without meter rarely works (there is always the exception).

I sometimes feel that Nan is the only one who wants to talk about this -- although I have seen others writing in very strict meter, I have seen little (so far) that moves in loose iambic or 'metered with liberal substitutions'. Perhaps, I'm missing something here.
Poet deVine
Administrator
Member Empyrean
since 05-26-99
Posts 25869
Hurricane Alley


3 posted 08-29-99 11:15 AM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

I for one, cannot write about the way I write. I am a high school graduate with no formal education in poetry....I know nothing about the mechanics of a poem. Perhaps that's why Nan is the only one who wants to talk about it as she is a teacher and knows whereof she speaks. Do you feel it's important to know all this to write a good poem?
DreamEvil
Member Elite
since 06-22-99
Posts 2442


4 posted 08-29-99 12:02 PM       View Profile for DreamEvil   Email DreamEvil   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit DreamEvil's Home Page   View IP for DreamEvil

I find that I agree with aspects of your statement, I disagree as well.

Brad, I do not need to know how to butcher a steer, carve off a steak, and cook it to enjoy the flavor and care involved in it's preparation. Similarly, I do not have to know the mechanics of poetry to appreciate it's message and beauty.

Art cannot be reduced to the methods of creating a painter's paints or what hair is best for brushes. Indeed, what modern painter concerns himself with the methods of producing acrylics as opposed to oil-based paint. Relative merit of each media may be discussed, but not what the ingredients are. I don't need to know the mechanics of poetry in order to create it. In fact, I know little of the mechanics of poetry yet I recognize good verse and create such.

I'm glad to be able to reply to you for a change. Thank you.

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


Elizabeth
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Moderator
Member Rara Avis
since 06-07-99
Posts 7296
America the beautiful


5 posted 08-29-99 12:14 PM       View Profile for Elizabeth   Email Elizabeth   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Elizabeth's Home Page   View IP for Elizabeth

I agree with DreamEvil. You do not NEED to know the mechanics and such of poetry. It is nice to know them, but not necessary. Poet deVine just said that she has no formal education in poetry, yet her writings are excellent and she is one of our most popular poets. Nan is very knowledgeable about meter, etc., and she also is a great writer and very popular. Personally, I like to get to know the mechanics of poetry, just to satisfy my curiosity and to get out of my ruts.

Great quote, Brad! Glad you posted it.

------------------
*Elizabeth*

"Dwelt a maid belov'd and cherish'd by high and low,
But with autumn leaf she perish'd, long time ago..."

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


6 posted 08-29-99 12:29 PM       View Profile for Nan   Email Nan   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nan's Home Page   View IP for Nan

Hehe....Brad, your're a gift from Above.... I've found that a "free verser" is sometimes labeled as such simply because they know little about prosody. After a few basic lessons, they frequently develop a renewed enthusiasm for structured verse... There are always those die-hard liberals, though - those who weave adroit tapestries with their wonderfully diverse imagery.... Viva la difference!!!

------------------
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


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


7 posted 08-29-99 08:49 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Thanks to everybody who responded (I honestly thought people would be turned off by the whole idea).

Just a couple of things (we all have to work some times):

No, Poet deVine, you don't need to know these things to write poetry (you can play by ear) but they're not that hard to learn (and I learned them by myself, I found the formal education of prosody extremely lacking in high school and college). They're not rules; they're guides and aids to increase deversity in your writing. They are tools to explain and communicate what we're trying to do here.

DreamEvil, I loved your metaphors here. You don't need to know how the steak was carved, what seasonings were applied, to eat it, to enjoy it. But what if you're the cook? Aren't knowing recipes important? Even if you decide to change those recipes, don't you need to know from whence it all began.

Modern painters still concern themselve with the effects of acryllics versus oils, still worry about which brushes give what texture to the painting. Guitar players still look for the guitar with the best sound (meaning what sound they want).

Poets don't have to know the linguistic and socio-linguistic rules for how words form but shouldn't they try to understand the tradition they work in? Shouldn't they understand how words in a poem work and influence other words around them, not to be straitjacketed but to pursue new sounds that haven't been done before (or to use old sounds in a new way)?.

Even Ginsberg knew the tradition.

Is any of this necessary? No, I suppose not. I cook without a recipe all the time. But, who would you rather have make dinner for you -- a professional chef or me?

God, I love this stuff,
Brad
Poet deVine
Administrator
Member Empyrean
since 05-26-99
Posts 25869
Hurricane Alley


8 posted 08-29-99 08:55 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

What do you consider diversity?
doreen peri
Member Rara Avis
since 05-25-99
Posts 8028
Virginia


9 posted 08-30-99 01:57 PM       View Profile for doreen peri   Email doreen peri   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for doreen peri

Hello, Brad! So glad you brought this up... hehehe.

Yes, we have had several 'debates' here about the value of free verse (according to some people here, there isn't any value in it) and rhyming structured metered verse (clearly voted the 'verse of choice' in these forums, it seems to me). Some of those debates were quite heated, I might say (and then again, I might not, but I just did.... LOL at myself).

During those quite passionate debates, someone brought up the fact that they didn't think it was important to know how to spell, given their adament belief that poetry is 'good' as long as it comes straight from the heart and expresses a person's feelings. Frankly, I had to laugh at that one, because no matter how much a poem expresses what's in a person's heart, spelling certainly DOES matter. It matters a great deal. If you are to be taken seriously at all, part of the craft includes spelling the words right. And if you can't spell worth a darn, you are lucky to be living in an age of spell check.

Ok, now, back to the question of prosody and versification and whether it's important to know anything about it. Well, certainly it's important to know SOMETHING about it, isn't it? I don't claim to be an expert on this, by any means.... on the contrary.... I *did* study poetry both in high school and college but that was a LONG time ago and frankly, I remember little of the termonologies and verse structure which I was taught. I *do* remember, though, how to discern if the meter is 'right' or if it feels 'forced' and is therefore NOT RIGHT (I hope someone is following this... hehehe).

I also learned that certain 'skills' can be employed in order to effect a 'better' poem. For instance: personification, alliteration, metaphor, and simile. All four of these are basic TOOLS of the poets craft. To know nothing about them is to limit yourself from creating the poems you wish to create.

Are artists these days no longer interested in the differences between acrylic paints and oil-based paints? You betcha, they are! Of course they are! These are two different media and the artist employs different sets of skills to use them in order to achieve the artistic effect they want to achieve. It's absolutely ludicrous to say artists are not concerned with the differences between these two painting methods. There are art classes in every University in the world (which offers art classes) with specialized classes in oils, acrylics, pencil drawing, colored pencil drawing, watercolor, etching, etc. etc. Each media requires a different set of skills in order for the artist to perfect his or her craft.

I am a graphic designer and use the computer as my tool to create art. If I didn't learn how to use various software programs such as QuarkXpress, Adobe Illustrator, and Photoshop, I would not be able to do the work or create the piece of art. There are separate skills necessary in each of these applications.

Ok, back to poetry (whew! aren't you glad?)-- just as with ANY art, skill sets are necessary to create the art. Let's say you are now writing poetic verse and time after time you post that verse in these forums or elsewhere on the internet and people continually respond by telling you what a great poet you are. Well, that's fine. Terrific. But, let's say you are writing straight from the heart unconcerned about any 'tool of the trade', not knowing if your using personification or metaphor, not concerned about whether the meter works or whether it seems forced... and yet people STILL think your poetry is fabulous. Well bravo to you, because that means you have a God-given TALENT and you are reaching people with your wordsmithing.

But, imagine if you took that God-given talent and honed it by learning about the 'tools of the trade' available to you? Don't you think your poetry craft will improve?

If you don't, then I wish you'd rethink this. Every artist needs to rely on a pallette of skills which they are continually working on improving and developing. Without those skills, you will be settling for less than you deserve and your poetry will be much less than it can be.

I'm done. Now, back to that poem I was writing. I think I started it about three weeks ago. Maybe when I think it's ready, i'll post it here so you guys can tell me what you think.

Good Bless.

dp

whoops, no spellcheck on passions. hope i spelled everything right. hehehe
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


10 posted 08-30-99 07:31 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Poet deVine, I just mean that a better understanding of meter can expand what you can do as a poet -- you know more tricks. You can write in meter sometimes, free verse in others, and everything in between whenever you want to. I think this is enjoyable for both the writer and the reader.

There is a big difference among poems that are written in anapestic tetrameter, in iambic pentameter, and in good old free verse. You can use whatever style you want to fit whatever theme you want.

I'm not against free verse at all (I'll try to post one today in the CA forum -- the OP forum is just too big for me to handle).

doreen peri, thanks for the response and I pretty much agree with everything you said.

Talent, poetry from the heart, and spelling isn't important? Wow, each one is another debate in itself.

I'll save those for later (and then you can really begin to wonder where I'm coming from -- or yawn and think, 'Brad's ranting again.'

Also, I'll try to put a quote up from Karl Shapiro on the value of free verse.

Having a good time,
Brad
doreen peri
Member Rara Avis
since 05-25-99
Posts 8028
Virginia


11 posted 08-31-99 08:32 AM       View Profile for doreen peri   Email doreen peri   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for doreen peri

So, Brad, do you still want to trade tricks and ideas? Let's get started on that! I think that sounds like a great idea.



-doreen
JP
Senior Member
since 05-25-99
Posts 1391
Loomis, CA


12 posted 08-31-99 12:35 PM       View Profile for JP   Email JP   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit JP's Home Page   View IP for JP

I want to applaud Doreen for stating the most obviously common sensical ideas I have seen on the subject of poetry.

Professional artists train and study for years to perfect their craft. The great painters of the past worked as apprentices for years before going out on thier own. Art, poetry, writing, any creative task is only improved by learning the skills involved.

To claim that learning and knowing those tools, skills, and constructs, is unimportant is the most asinine claim I have ever heard.

A poet may be talented, but s/he is also limited. An an unlearned poet, regardless of talent, soon dries up.

------------------
Yesterday is ash, tomorrow is smoke; only today does the fire burn.
JP

Seaangel
Member
since 07-27-99
Posts 172
Auckland, New Zealand


13 posted 09-01-99 11:55 PM       View Profile for Seaangel   Email Seaangel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Seaangel

WOW, I always find these discussions on different kinds of poetry one of the best parts in Passions. Someone said that the metered, rhyming kind is 'verse of choice' : anyone know of poetry sites where free verse or even the weird kind that doesn't sound like normal speech is popular? I would like to hear opinions on whether a poem has to be easy to read and understand for it to be a good poem.. personally I have written some de-constructivist poetry in the past that looks like a bunch of words arranged on the page; no sentences etc. What do people think of this kind of poetry?
doreen peri
Member Rara Avis
since 05-25-99
Posts 8028
Virginia


14 posted 09-02-99 10:22 AM       View Profile for doreen peri   Email doreen peri   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for doreen peri

seaangel-- try these:

Critic Corner at the Scroll

http://www.scroll.org/critic/

and

The Artistic~Expressions Bulletin Board

http://www.artistic-expressions.com/bbs/

(sorry, no links)

dp

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


15 posted 09-03-99 03:45 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Doreen, I'm ready to trade tricks and ideas any time. Where do you want to start?

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


16 posted 09-03-99 09:31 AM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

I sit and wait to dry up. Just bought the book Ron recommended on the main site.



[This message has been edited by Poet deVine (edited 09-03-99).]
doreen peri
Member Rara Avis
since 05-25-99
Posts 8028
Virginia


17 posted 09-03-99 09:12 PM       View Profile for doreen peri   Email doreen peri   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for doreen peri

Brad... let's do it by e-mail???
Seaangel
Member
since 07-27-99
Posts 172
Auckland, New Zealand


18 posted 09-04-99 02:06 AM       View Profile for Seaangel   Email Seaangel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Seaangel

thanks, doreen, I'll check those out.
Ron
Administrator
Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
Posts 9708
Michigan, US


19 posted 09-18-99 11:59 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

It seem I'm arriving a bit late, and perhaps everyone else has already left the party. But I can't resist throwing in my own twist on this discussion...

Personally, I think the debate on whether you need to know the science in order to practice the art (because that, after all, is what we're talking about) is moot. How can any writer, engaged in life with passion, not want to know as much about poetry as possible? We write because we think we have something important to say. The more we live, the more we learn, the more know, the better we can function as writers.

For most of us, being asked why we write is tantamount to being asked why we breathe. I submit that asking why we want to learn is the same…
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


20 posted 09-20-1999 08:05 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Ron,
I agree with your statement. However, there are two ways to go about this learning. One is to read poems carefully and the other is to read poems carefully and study the theory of poems (I've never heard anyone say you can learn to write poems only by theory -- tantamount to learning music through music theory but never actually listen to music).

I use the music metaphor a lot but I do think there is a difference. I have read at least one poet who posted at another forum who said that she doesn't read poems, she just writes the stuff. If you take poetry seriously, how are you supposed to react to that?

Curiouser and curiouser,
Brad
 
 Post A Reply Post New Topic   Go to the Next Oldest/Previous Topic Return to Topic Page Go to the Next Newest Topic 
All times are ET (US) Top
  User Options
>> Discussion >> Philosophy 101 >> A quote from Dana Gioa on poets Format for Better Printing EMail to a Friend Not Available
Print Send ECard

 

pipTalk Home Page | Main Poetry Forums

How to Join | Member's Area / Help | Private Library | Search | Contact Us | Today's Topics | Login
Discussion | Tech Talk | Archives | Sanctuary



© Passions in Poetry and netpoets.com 1998-2013
All Poetry and Prose is copyrighted by the individual authors