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View Full Version : The emotional drive



Martin
May 15th, 2009, 10:15 AM
I think it's important, when writing poetry, that you are inspired and motivated deeply by your feelings. If you are a skilled writer it is more easy to cleverly put together nice poems, yet that doesn't mean you had your feelings involved in the process. I believe the best way to instill something into the reader, is to genuinely write from your heart. That way you can with simple and few words express the strongest of feelings.
Often I find long and complex poems with carefully weighed content to be too much of a perfectionist process, where the focus has been on making the poem work instead of on something the author has actually felt or been through. It's like you can force a rhyme, so you can force a feeling or an image.
What I'm saying is not about keeping it simple, it's about writing out of inspiration and listening to your feelings. Usually, when I write a poem, I start off with some inspiration or feeling and sometimes I finish it, or at least what is the first draft, in that same feeling, but sometimes I start thinking how to turn this poem about, how to intrigue or provoke the reader. Even that this is a mindful process, I try to keep it to a minimum. Otherwise I'll be using the letters and words to manipulate the reader instead of doing what for me poetry is much more about, expressing my lived experience through my writing.

Just some recent thoughts I wanted to share.

-m

gagoots
May 15th, 2009, 10:54 AM
YES!

estyzesty
December 12th, 2009, 12:59 AM
So true. I find my best pieces are those which come out of real emotional inspiration.

rainhands
March 9th, 2010, 08:07 PM
I think that emotion can sometimes bog a poem down, or make it too sentimental. Poems or ideas for poems are often stirred by emotions, but in the act of writing I think there needs to be a certain amount of impersonality for the poem to work. It's not just a simple divide between impersonal, complex, seemingly perfectionist rhyming poems, and personal, deeply emotional ones.

A lot of my favourite poems don't really express strong feelings at all. Take a poem like "The Red Wheelbarrow" - it seeks to renew perception, to render the world anew, more than anything else.

Certainly, a poem needs to be genuine, it needs to be something you believe in, but I don't think that good poems need to be about or inspired by intense personal feeling.

rainhands
March 9th, 2010, 08:07 PM
I think that emotion can sometimes bog a poem down, or make it too sentimental. Poems or ideas for poems are often stirred by emotions, but in the act of writing I think there needs to be a certain amount of impersonality for the poem to work. It's not just a simple divide between impersonal, complex, seemingly perfectionist rhyming poems, and personal, deeply emotional ones.

A lot of my favourite poems don't really express strong feelings at all. Take a poem like "The Red Wheelbarrow" - it seeks to renew perception, to render the world anew, more than anything else.

Certainly, a poem needs to be genuine, it needs to be something you believe in, but I don't think that good poems need to be about or inspired by intense personal feeling.

citygirl
March 11th, 2010, 05:36 AM
I agree with Martin; the best poems lend an emotion to its reader. It evokes a memory, or provokes a particular reaction or feeling. If a poem is without emotion or conviction on the writer’s part, then the reader will not hear the tone, and voice will come out as a forced or predictable group of words. There will not be any heart in the poem… :)

Richard.E.Craig
January 22nd, 2011, 02:28 PM
I think that emotion can sometimes bog a poem down, or make it too sentimental.
Emotion is the Raison d'Ítre of poetry.Without it I feel it has little worth.

Daisy_Flortentine
January 22nd, 2011, 04:13 PM
If there is any "drive" behind writing poetry, I think it likely to be emotion - if for profit or other such motivations, it will probably be lacking.


I think that emotion can sometimes bog a poem down, or make it too sentimental. Poems or ideas for poems are often stirred by emotions, but in the act of writing I think there needs to be a certain amount of impersonality for the poem to work.

I agree with this statement - to an extent. Poetry is about awareness, and if it contains feeling, the writer should explore that feeling through their writing. To explore, one may need to be brutally honest with oneself, and this should bring some measure of . . . sobriety (?) to expressions which may otherwise have been "sentimental" or cliched.

This is, I feel, the difference between considered, thorough and honest pieces, and hodge-podge lines which may best be described as word-vomit.