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Olly Buckle
November 6th, 2012, 09:47 PM
It is fairly obvious really, I am asking you to finish the statement appropriately. I hope for everything from the matter-of-fact ‘Poetry is a collection of words arranged in order ...”, to “Poetry is an ephemeral sense of being contained within ...”. Along the way I would expect a number of definitions that are definitions of a poem, or even most poems; but it is hard to think of things that cover everything. For example, “Poetry is an unusual view of that which is usually concealed or mundane.” It is true of a lot of poetry; all?

That should give us plenty to discuss in between. Your turn ...

Terry D
November 6th, 2012, 09:57 PM
Poetry is: Words maximized.

Susanmuse
November 6th, 2012, 10:01 PM
Poetry is the moment between heartbeats.

Olly Buckle
November 7th, 2012, 12:28 AM
I hope for everything from the matter-of-fact ‘Poetry is a collection of words arranged in order ...”, to “Poetry is an ephemeral sense of being contained within ...”. My hopes are being realised it seems, though you two phrase the points of view far more elegantly than I did. How about,

Poetry is the transformation of the individual into the communal; the translation of the private and personal into the universal and cultural and the transmutation of the agonising into the rich.

Olly Buckle
November 17th, 2012, 06:47 PM
I have just come across W H Auden quoted as saying " Poetry is memorable speech". It is not true, I am sure I have heard people mis-Quote things more often than they could quote them. to my mind it draws attention to the point in a way that is singular and holds the attention. The event may be memorable, but although the particular words may frequently be recognised for their excellence they are more rarely memorable.
"How did he put it? ... no it was almost that ... anyway it was dead good, you should have heard it."

Susanmuse
December 1st, 2012, 05:22 PM
Poetry is the echo of silence. A falling leaf. The moment of release. The hollow tear shed in darkness. Poetry leads us to the More.

Zico Cozier
December 1st, 2012, 05:42 PM
Poetry is the expression of one's imagination through the mystification of a reality

Foxee
December 1st, 2012, 07:40 PM
Poetry is truth distilled.

Gumby
December 1st, 2012, 08:24 PM
The best explanation I’ve heard is that poetry is paradoxical. It attempts to use words to say something that can’t be put into words. It fills in the cracks and is the empty space that is left over. I know that may not make a lot of sense, so I’ll let the poet Mark Strand say it, better than I can.


Keeping Things Whole


In a field
I am the absence
of field.
This is
always the case.
Wherever I am
I am what is missing.

When I walk
I part the air
and always
the air moves in
to fill the spaces
where my body’s been.

We all have reasons
for moving.
I move
to keep things whole.

Mark Strand

(I took this from my article in one of our newsletters, so if it sounds familiar...)

Don V Standeford
December 4th, 2012, 09:51 AM
Poetry is something new that flowers from the existence of something old. A fresh scent from an ancient sea. Beauty out of ugliness to beauty again.

Cran
December 7th, 2012, 09:25 PM
In spite of all the wisdom and truth of those above me,
I still can't move past my previous reply to this question.

Poetry is in the ear of the beer holder.

alanmt
December 7th, 2012, 09:59 PM
What KyleXY said about Pachelbel's Canon in D - that it was part mathematics and part euphoria, meant to fill all who heard it with a flood of emotion - seems to me to apply to poetry as well.

Poetry is a song where the notes are words.

Olly Buckle
December 8th, 2012, 07:50 PM
Gumby; that 'paradoxical' explanation is one I have always liked, this from my piece 'just write 2',

I might describe a flower in terms of calyx, pistil, stamens, petals, honey guides, etc., or I might put it in a vase in a Shinto shrine, and, through it, perceive the completeness of being. Both approaches improve understanding, but understanding of different types, these may complement each other, but poetry is, in some ways, the art of describing the indescribable, the second type of understanding is often appropriate to that, so whole poem first.

Nee
January 5th, 2013, 01:05 AM
Poerty is a finger’s lingering trace round the delicate lips of one’s lover.

;-P

Segrotlo
January 5th, 2013, 04:07 PM
Poetry is profound thought that demands to be expressed in the best and most eloquent arrangement of words that the poet can ascribe to it because though it must be said -- the poem must be as worthy as the thought.

dolphinlee
January 5th, 2013, 06:49 PM
Poetry is that magical art that can communicate in a few words what I need a page to say.


Poetry is when emotion has found thought and the thought hasfound words. - Robert Frost


A poet can survive everything but a misprint. – Oscar Wilde

Nee
January 5th, 2013, 08:05 PM
'Course, today I believe that poetry is that rush of cool fresh air across your brain the moment after your skull had been cleaved in two by a sharp, though slightly rusty, battle ax.

...Seems, I can't even have a couple cocktails with friends without suffering a hang-over in the morning these days.

RomanAround
January 6th, 2013, 03:50 AM
-obviously this is all from my point of view and is stupidly sappy for no apparent reason-

Poetry is the photograph of the literary world - not a painting that took ages, but a single moment of truth sliced out of an instant and made to seem twice as beautiful/ugly/poignant/inspired/whatever as it really was.

Poetry is fun. You can go structured or unstructured and still be called a poet, you can capitalize and use perfect grammar or toss those rules out the door and write simply as you see the world, poetry is a pen that the dabbler can pick up and turn the mundane into something beautiful.

Poetry is life and death and art and garbage. It allows you to wear so many different voices and try out so many feelings, turn a poem into a song with a few chords... it's just awesome. Except when it's painful, as I'm sure we've all come to realize looking over our own past works :P

Olly Buckle
January 6th, 2013, 07:40 AM
poetry is a pen that the dabbler can pick up and turn the mundane into something beautiful.A wonderful testament to the new romantics of the late eighteenth early nineteenth century. This was their innovation and at the time it was seen as almost sacrilegious by some, using poetry to describe the mundane. It fitted with the ethos of the time however and people began to see evidence of the Divinity in the small as well as in the Power and the Glory, so poetry is the leading edge that introduces the unthinkable, as well as being the restatement of old ideas and the reforming of the cliché it seems looking back through the thread.

the antithesis
January 6th, 2013, 07:53 AM
Concise.

candid petunia
January 6th, 2013, 12:12 PM
Poetry is...powerful. It is music; it resonates in your body and leaves a tingly feeling all over. It can leave you with that wonderful sensation where you feel you've just received the best hug ever -- it is like sunlight that warms just the right places in your body. It allows you to bask in it's glow and wonder at it with wide-eyed innocence. It is the discovery of a lover as his heart thumps in his chest, knowing he has stumbled upon something, the beauty of which he cannot explain.

True and beautiful poetry has the ability to leave you breathless, and the feeling of spent satisfaction later on. :)

Olly Buckle
January 6th, 2013, 12:46 PM
Poetry is...powerful. It is music; it resonates in your body and leaves a tingly feeling all over. It can leave you with that wonderful sensation where you feel you've just received the best hug ever -- it is like sunlight that warms just the right places in your body. It allows you to bask in it's glow and wonder at it with wide-eyed innocence. It is the discovery of a lover as his heart thumps in his chest, knowing he has stumbled upon something, the beauty of which he cannot explain.

True and beautiful poetry has the ability to leave you breathless, and the feeling of spent satisfaction later on. :)Dulce decorum est

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned out backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame, all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.

Gas leaves you breathless, poetry describes something indescribable, it is so overwhelming, it does not have to be a thing of beauty though.

Tal S.
January 11th, 2013, 01:42 AM
Poetry is speech elevated over words, a signified floating above arbitrary signifiers.

Fats Velvet
January 17th, 2013, 08:46 PM
Poetry happens when prose masters its instrument.

bajmahal
March 17th, 2013, 03:50 AM
Poetry is visceral.

Joseph
April 2nd, 2013, 08:12 AM
Poetry is my thoughts moving in sync with the world.

sore
April 4th, 2013, 01:25 AM
poetry is sadness held inside.

The Rust on the Razor
June 8th, 2013, 11:15 PM
...the unintended out-breath of feeling

Olly Buckle
June 9th, 2013, 09:26 AM
poetry is sadness held inside.

...the unintended out-breath of feeling
Poetry is an art, in the sense that it is contrived. At its best it is the artificial so skilfully contrived that it appears natural, that is surely why these two obvious misconceptions; it is manifestly not held inside, and the creation of a decent poem takes so much vision and revision it could never be unintended. These strike me more as testaments to the skill of good poets than actual definitions of poetry.

Vitaly Ana
June 9th, 2013, 02:34 PM
Poetry is all of life, filtered into one's mind through a very personal lens and expressed outward so that many may understand the experience of a single being.

Poetry is a one life crying out: I want to connect with others

The Rust on the Razor
June 9th, 2013, 07:24 PM
Poetry is an art, in the sense that it is contrived. At its best it is the artificial so skilfully contrived that it appears natural, that is surely why these two obvious misconceptions; it is manifestly not held inside, and the creation of a decent poem takes so much vision and revision it could never be unintended. These strike me more as testaments to the skill of good poets than actual definitions of poetry.

When I say that it is an unintended outbreath of feeling, what I mean is that emotions and feelings are the primary event and the by-product is the expression of this, be it in writing or visual arts or music or whatever form is chosen. I didn't mean that it just happens, more that the feelings and experiences and empathy comes first and the words are what you use to convey it if you choose to do so in writing. I personally don't have emotions with the purpose of getting a piece of art out of it, they just happen. (although I am sure there are lots who put themselves in new situations just to experience whatever it is.) This is the unintended bit, the fact that expression is not automatic or guaranteed. I wouldnt have anything to write about if I didn't feel.

So I guess what I answered is "what is art" rather than what is poetry. Having said that, writing is the only sort of artistic expression I have any experience of at all- so they must be one and the same in my head :smile2:

Gargh
June 9th, 2013, 07:44 PM
Poetry is... an amazing dream I had where the tips of my fingers were streaming words, like light trails in the absolute dark, and they tripped over scales on a gigantic piano. It was great.

escorial
June 9th, 2013, 08:45 PM
poetry is words about emotion

The Rust on the Razor
June 9th, 2013, 09:35 PM
escorial you managed to say in 5 words what I stuttered out in about 200. I have lots to learn.

ShellBells
June 12th, 2013, 12:04 AM
Poetry is the vehicle with which I carry my personal experience to you. Neurons of sentience crossing, connecting, electric.

Olly Buckle
June 12th, 2013, 09:05 AM
Poetry is the vehicle with which I carry my personal experience to you.I very much like this, it is exactly the sort of paradox poetry expresses

Rust on the razor, you have a good point, I think I was being too narrow.
If I apply the phrase 'Something is...' to an inanimate object I get various possibilities' eg :-

Concorde is an airplane; a straight material definition of it.
Concorde is supersonic; a definition of what it can do.
Concorde is very loud; my experience of it.

This thread is giving me things to think about, thank you folks.

Ariel
June 13th, 2013, 12:40 AM
Poetry is connective tissue. It creates and defines us as much as we create and define it. I carry it within me and it is lodged in my bones as much as my DNA.

Glass Pencil
July 8th, 2013, 07:27 PM
Poetry is finger-painting on the mind.

Origen
July 24th, 2013, 09:42 PM
Poetry is non-sense to those who won't read,
Sense magnified to those who do,
and a temporary escape from the sensual world
for those that write.

Whimsy
August 16th, 2013, 06:32 PM
"Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance" - Carl Sandburg

Release and Escape...

the brave and selfless sharing as an insight to an individual's psyche and even though it sounds too clinical, I think it fits in many cases.

But I suppose it means something different to everyone.

Gypsy
October 8th, 2013, 04:54 AM
Poetry is not to be touched by the Grammar Nazis. Down with your structure, or the limits. Poetry should be. Thou shall not taint a poets creative nature.

Bloggsworth
October 8th, 2013, 09:21 AM
Poetry is in the understanding of the reader.

dannyboy
October 8th, 2013, 12:28 PM
Poetry is an exploration of the gaps that link everything between