View Full Version : Recommend me an easy accesible guide to writing poetry using the 5 senses

November 13th, 2019, 05:56 PM
Skip to the end of the post for a second question. I think poets know better than me how do this.

I want to be recommended a book on poetry that specifically deals and discusses how to write imagery and the 5 senses. That means it cannot be a mfa book. It has to be for brainstorming imagery and the 5 senses. I have no budget for the book as long as it doesn't come pricey say 80 dollars. I need something down to earth and practical. So for instance it dedicates itself to this as the focus of the book, or has many excercises and a chapter that is very long. I know there is figurative, literal imagery. There may be more categories, but literal imagery I have trouble thinking up for writing anything in any genre literal imagery. I'd appreciate any help anyone volunteers to give me as information. So the 5 senses could be talked about abudantly. There could be a practice section. It can be theoretical. The more opinions there are the better and smarter choice I could make. Thank you. I prefer something with excericses and practice with a focus on how to generate ideas for imagery.

I have the writer's ode: unlocking the poet within by stephen fry. I also have all the books I have listed here.

Poetry:Tools & Techniques
Goodman, John C.

The Discovery of Poetry: A Field Guide to Reading and Writing Poems A Field Guide to Reading and Writing Poems Harvest Original
Mayes, Frances, Mariner Books

The Poetry Gymnasium: 94 Proven Exercises to Shape Your Best Verse
Tom C. Hunley, Brand: McFarland

The Everything Writing Poetry Book: A Practical Guide To Style, Structure, Form, And Expression Everything®
Eliopulos, Tina D, Adams Media

Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Poetry Complete Idiot's Guide to
Moustaki, Nikki, Alpha

The Practice of Poetry: Writing Exercises From Poets Who Teach
Behn, Robin
Sold by: HarperCollins

The Poet's Companion: A Guide to the Pleasures of Writing Poetry
Addonizio, Kim, Dorianne Laux

A Study of Poetry
Perry, Bliss

A Poetry Handbook
Oliver, Mary

Hidden Hurt Survivor Poetry I (Hidden Hurt Series)
Hidden Hurt, Lindsey Mason

UNMASKING THE PAIN POETRY JOURNAL: Poetic Expression From A Wounded Heart
Alicia Brennen

Once again thank you for any help in helping me find such a book. I was told studying poetry helps with description. This is what I have been trying to do.

update: I was thinking of simple excercises being like some of the examples I will list: for the senses I could for instance touch and smell different areas of the house concerning objects and then describe these senses.

For example: the coins in his hands and paper money looked dirty and were turning greener with the squalor of the slums. It possesed a sweaty odor belonging to its previous owners. The dust of human skin on its paper was thin and the surface had made it smell with the panache of a person in a sweat shop. While the coin itself shimmered gold. While the bill was the most coveted thing humans carried with them as unadorned. To some it was unadmired like a piece of string. (I admit I stole that inspiration from mausppasant)

However, for a picture it is quite different. Is there a special trick to it? Don't get my writer's agenda wrong and I do like poems. I could write a poem. But I am looking for description tips. However, I can write a poem. I like reading them. I think we share something in common. One genre strives to describe with feelings, the other strives to create a picture. Or fiction strives to create a movie as a moving image. I'm guessing for a painting like the starry night it's an ordinary subject. A night and resturant can be a vista for many a story or poem even.

Anything special you do that I am not doing most likely? I admit that is a seperate question that does seem different to the thread's main question.

I got that exercise from a book on description.

November 19th, 2019, 04:41 AM
I assume a technique or strategy is to google galleries of paintings. What I want is as close as a 3 dimensional view to the original pictures to describe. I did some research on google. Anything that is art imo is better than the original photograph you can find anywhere. Sometimes art critics make comments. Maybe I'll invest in a book of art history that can explain what painting corresponds to houses and which artists paint them. If I want to describe a fictional place and setting this is the best approach. The study of art imo can help one write poetry and even setting. It seems I made a very difficult question. So I think this is the answer I might need. Most of this information is probably free on the internet. That's how to describe concretely I think. That will be my strategy.

Darren White
November 19th, 2019, 07:09 AM
I am really sorry, but I have no idea what you are after, or what you are trying to accomplish. If you wish to know more about poetry written around paintings, try to google for 'ekphrasis', 'ekphrastic art' or something like that.

November 19th, 2019, 09:38 AM
Why don't you take a look at this
It also gives some examples.

Google: Poetry using the five senses and you will be rewarded with lots of options.

Then try writing a sensory poem and post it to the poetry board for critique and ask one of our petry mentors for help

Also check out synesthesia

November 19th, 2019, 04:29 PM
Thanks Darren and Pip. I will keep researching on the topic on how I can describe using pictures. I have a difficult time selecting pictures. I wish I could depict a place. But I realize it must be imagined. That and the props in a setting. They all are important. Because my style is labeled as abstract. That is what I want to do. But since I can never visualize easily a place I need to depend on pictures or maybe an art exhibit would do the trick. Ekphrasis art, is something I will need to research.

I found this link which is more or less what I am looking for. It has good advice. https://m.wikihow.com/Describe-the-Setting-in-a-Story

I was told if I learned poetry that I could write more concretely. I have problems with describing places. Because I never write with much detail.

I will keep searching. Most of the advice I have found on the five senses is difficult to help me visualize. After researching I realize that is how you can visualize a scene better. That is for describing. I can write a poem definitely. I want to practice my descriptive skills.

Yes poetry based on a painting or picture can help. I do what to research that further. What questions and strategies for instance. So that I can visualize the place better. The above article and link suggests I look at multiple pictures of the same setting that are similar. For example of a haunted house. It also says to explore the history of the place.

I will google for more. There are no shortcuts in descriptive writing. Thanks pip as well for your suggestions. Both of you were helpful. Sometimes I need some guidance and I liked what I got as advice.

Of course I will never get a description like going to the real place. I am always looking for pointers in descriptive writing.