A question for writers of poetry

Discussion of other topics not necessarily Keats or poetry-related, i.e. other authors, literature, film, music, the arts etc.

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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby Nonedo » Sat Feb 13, 2010 6:08 pm

Saturn wrote:
Nonedo wrote:First you must follow what others (Greats) did (I don't think that will be a problem in English). Forget everyone born after 19th century and most of second half of 19th century (That is where the path of destruction began).


Quite frankly that's complete and utter nonsense, and shows a very closed mind, I don't agree with that at all. You dismiss every poet born in the last hundred years which is not only ignorant but stupid.

I can't believe any intelligent, cultured person would agree with that either.

Ridiculous idea.


um, Again : there are too many skyscrapers in the world to be amazed by one store houses that your culture has to offer or makes you follow them.

How many languages do you know Saturn/Jupiter?

As goethe said: If you know only your language, than you know nothing about it.
To take into the air my quiet breath;
Now more than ever seems it rich to die,
To cease upon the midnight with no pain,
While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby Jupiter » Sat Feb 13, 2010 7:04 pm

I'm not quite sure what you mean by 'Saturn/Jupiter'. Are you implying that we are one and the same person? If so, then I can assure this is most definitely not the case.

To answer you question I can read 3 or 4 languages, apart from my native tongue (which, by the way, is not English). I am glad you brought up the issue of language here. Do you think a poetic translation could ever match the original? Or is it that something is always inevitably lost (i.e. culturally-bound terms, or personal structures, such as invented words)? In other words, should we strive to read poetry, or literature in general, in the language in which it was conceived and written, or should we be content with reading it in our language, while being aware that it might have suffered a certain amount on loss during the process?


You say that I should follow the greats and ignore whatever was written after the 20th century. Do you mean to say I should recreate the style and syntax of the 'classics'? Because if you do, I don't really think that would suit me and what I intend to do. Certainly, it is necessary to read as much as possible so as to become familiar with the different types and contexts of poetry, but if I were to write in the style of the 19th century, what would become of originality? Besides, poetry has taken a different path since that time. What would it be like if today's composers started writing in the style of Mozart or Beethoven? You can't surpass that kind of greatness, all you can do is merely imitate it, and it would never even come close to reaching the same heights as the original works. Or you could try to do something new, something different, you could establish a new genre, a new form, at least you could make an attempt, and that would be a far more valuable effort than simply re-inventing the wheel. I hate postmodernism and what it's done to art, be it literature, painting, music etc. but the solution, the 'cure' to it is not to walk paths that were trodden before, but to find new ones, or to remodel those that exist. That is precisely what I want to do in my work, it might seem over-ambitious, and I might fail, I know, but this is the road I want to take.
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby Nonedo » Sat Feb 13, 2010 9:10 pm

A - by Saturn/Jupiter I meant that I ask both of you but individialy.
B - yes translation always leaves something behind. And also that if you compare poets of 1900-1930 Russia to ones of English (Or even most of other poets of 20th), you will understand that English are rubbish (Though I am not Russian)
C - No I meant that you must not be influenced by anything written after 1900, not to immitate them (though you can, for starters, for art is like car in the mud now, first you must get out of it by polling back, and dont be affected by the society "Live with your century but do not be its creature") Read as much as you can, (out of best) and you will find that you are interested in much more than Spectre that dwells in silent light of grey city, and you will find what you really want. Open the horizons. (You might even write about space (science fiction poetry?))

And what languages do you know?
To take into the air my quiet breath;
Now more than ever seems it rich to die,
To cease upon the midnight with no pain,
While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby marwood » Wed Feb 17, 2010 2:31 pm

I know that Charles Bukowski is nothing like Keats, but the reality of life is not all dancing through
fields of corn, or floating above the tree's licking the morning dew from the buds.
Saturn is right, you cannot dismiss decades of poetry just because you don't happen to like it!
A little taste of " A note upon modern poesy" by C.B.

..I am also old enough so that I remember when poems
made many references to the Greek and Roman
gods.
If you didn't know your gods you weren't a very good
writer.
also, if you couldn't slip in a line of
Spanish, French or
Italian,
you certainly weren't a very good
writer.
..also, the oldest notion still in vogue is
that if you can't understand a poem then
it almost certainly is a
good one.
..when your average garage mechanics
start bringing books of poesy to read
on their lunch breaks
then we'll know for sure we're moving in
the right
direction.

So dont be elitist free your mind! :wink:
That I might drink, and leave the world unseen.
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby marwood » Wed Feb 17, 2010 6:31 pm

I dont think every one is elitist or a snob,
and I didn't realise that agreeing with someone constituted kow towing!
I love Keats and the Pre-Raphaelites, I think Nonedo said "screw them"
but then that's the sort of reaction they faced anyway!
Maybe we should dismiss everyone that came after Shakespeare the greatest wordsmith ever!
I think Keats said that Shakespeare has left "nothing to say about nothing or anything"

Chin Chin!
Marwood.
That I might drink, and leave the world unseen.
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby marwood » Thu Feb 18, 2010 12:25 pm

Ok [banned member], you are probably right, I can be a bit snobby but I dont like to think I am elitist.
Let me tell you a story, I discovered poetry really about three years ago, I left school at 16
with nothing but bad memories, and that was many many years ago! Poetry then just seemed
a stuffy dead language, banging on about daffodils! And I was letting my hair grow and getting
into Led Zeppelin and Deep purple! And then one day about three years ago, I walked into a charity book shop, and spent
the best 25pence ever, I picked up a book of poetry by John Keats, flicked through and it fell open on Nightingale,
I stood in the shop reading it and bang! ( no I wasn't being mugged Birmingham is not that bad!) my life changed.
When i got home I Googled him and was moved by his story and letters, and I found this site.
I have learnt much from this site, there are obviously some very well read folk here, and i enjoy reading their
comments.
I am at the moment reading Shakespeare's sonnets, that spotty youth of 16 would never have believed it!
Anyway, my comments aroused some banter between Birmingham and Blackpool! :D

Chin Chin.
Marwood.
Last edited by marwood on Thu Feb 18, 2010 12:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby Nonedo » Thu Feb 18, 2010 12:39 pm

Yes, everyone thinks that if some academic says it’s great, than it’s great (though all those academics are bunch of educated idiots). But if you live in other countries, no one knows who the hell Bukowski is, because they don’t need him. There was some Italian who gave a better answer to subject Bujowski puts. Just like “Much have I travelled” is better than “Yeah, I just read Homer by Chapman and ‘tis awesome.”
The fact is that, poetry of later poets is not as full as the early ones; it just doesn’t feels the same. For they imitated the olds and these imitate first them (Pre-Raph) now themselves (Bukowski).
As Keats said, well, read the letter to Reynolds 1818 February 3. I can not find it on the net.
Also the Shakespeare thing, don’t overrate him. He said everything in his way, Wordsworth in his, Keats in his. Just because you have a very very very good table, doesn’t mean you don’t need a chair or a spoon. You might not say it better that he did, but you can give a better/different answer, as negative capability compared to Hamlets speech about actor’s emotions. Shakespeare now, is more like a room, but you still need furniture.

Edit: I have no Idea what are trying to say with this memoir of yours.
To take into the air my quiet breath;
Now more than ever seems it rich to die,
To cease upon the midnight with no pain,
While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby Nonedo » Fri Feb 19, 2010 5:39 pm

Jupiter wrote:Nothing would please me more but to read and study the great poets of past centuries, as Saturn suggested, and I would be very, very grateful if you could make recommendations for me and also indicate the characteristics I should look for in each poet, what it is that makes each one of them special, what differentiates them from the rest.


Do as I do - buy all books (I suggest used ones) labled poetry and read at least little a day. I suggest start from anthologies (English Arabic etc.) And you will see which language poets you like best and which poets in the end.
To take into the air my quiet breath;
Now more than ever seems it rich to die,
To cease upon the midnight with no pain,
While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby steffen » Mon Apr 05, 2010 4:46 pm

Emily Dickinson is one of my favorite poets. She never ceased to write poetry but was never published, and died an eccentric lonely recluse at Amherst, Massachusets at the age of 56 in 1886. I think she could be considered the patron saint of all those striving anonymous poets out there.

What follows here is a very brief resumé of Christopher Moore's introduction to the book, Emily Dickinson- Selected Poetry, Gramercy Books, 1993:
---She had few influences other than Shakespeare, the Bible and Church hymnals. A literary critic of the time, whose advice Emily had requested by asking him in a letter whether her poetry "breathed", responded by answering that he was not sure her writings could really be called poetry and added: "This is poetry torn up by the roots, with rain and dew and earth still clinging to them".

What this critic considered a damnation, was later understood by many to be the highest form of praise.She might have been thinking of that criticism when she wrote:

This is my letter to the world,
That never wrote to me,---
The simple news that Nature told,
With tender majesty.

Her message is committed
To hands that cannot see;
For love of her, sweet countrymen,
Judge tenderly of me.


After the poet's death, her sister discovered her poems stashed neatly away in a chest of drawers in her bedroom and eventually gave them to the world. Her work anticipated the 20th century and her influence on modern poetry has been profound. Christopher Moore says of the poet: "Emily Dickinson's poetry inhabited the interior of her psyche and explored her own fears and desires with startlng scrutiny."

Nonedo, take another deep breath, and read this masterpiece of a poem directly from the hand of the humble "spinster of Amherst", "torn up by the roots, with the rain, the dew and the earth still clinging to it."

XLV
Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just ourselves
And immortality.

We slowly drove, he knew no haste,
And I had put away
My labor, and my leisure too,
For his civility.

We passed the school where children played,
Their lessons scarcely done;
We passed the fields of gazing grain,
We passed the setting sun.

We paused before a house that seemed
A swelling of the ground;
The roof was scarcely visible,
The cornice but a mound.

Since then 'tis centuries; but each
Feels shorter than the day
I first surmised the horses' heads
Were toward eternity.
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby moonflower » Wed May 19, 2010 2:52 pm

I started writing poetry as soon as I learned to write, before I turned seven. I started writing before I started reading poetry.... And I am not sure if my poetry counts as poetry or if my prose counts as prose, but I don't care. I write for myself in any form I wish. I think poetry is more the feeling behind it- real poetry. And if my poetry ever employs any poetic devices, I notice them after they have been written. Poetry is utterly spontaneous for me. Its the universe hinted at behind the words.......
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby Saturn » Wed May 19, 2010 3:02 pm

That's as it should be, as far as I'm concerned. There is an art of poetry of course, but for me it's primarily self-expression and self-exploration, a spontaneous outburst of feeling, or thought put into words.
"Oh what a misery it is to have an intellect in splints".
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby moonflower » Wed May 19, 2010 3:13 pm

I have a book called Letters to a Young Poet. It is a collection of letters written by Rainer Maria Rilke. They are wonderful and really help understand the creative process, amidst a wild assemblage of swirling words. He writes through passion, evoking passion, and through his explanations I was able to grasp better what I unconsciously feel when I write.
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby steffen » Mon May 24, 2010 7:54 am

Thanks Moonflower for your reference to Rilke's Letters to a Young Poet. I found it on the Web right after reading your post. I stayed up til the wee hours reading and re-reading. It's a real vade mecum. Pure gold!
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Re: A question for writers of poetry

Postby moonflower » Mon May 24, 2010 3:11 pm

You are quite welcome. I could read it repeatedly forever. I have an old worn copy that my grandmother found at a garage sale and gave to me. The pages are yellowed and it is wonderous.
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