1. Cade Johnson
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    Cade Johnson Member

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    Question about Free Verse... A newb question

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Cade Johnson, Dec 10, 2011.

    I'm embarrassed to ask, but hate fake people. I won't pretend to be all-knowing.

    I love poetry. I run a website that is largely focused on it, but I must admit I am somewhat new to a lot of styles, including variations of free verse. Some of it, I write and love. It doesn't necessarily rhyme, doesn't have a set rhythm, and doesn't have structured stanzas. However, my poems are clearly poems (in my mind). I do have a changing rhythm, and phrases that emphasize different things, etc. Emotion.

    My problem: some poetry I've read... doesn't. To me, some free verse appears to be a short story or monologue where someone just hit the "return" key at inappropriate times, creating shorter lines. I see few literary devices, zero discernible rhythm, no structure, nothing. COMPLETELY FREE. But if a work of literature is completely free, would that not shake the label "poetry" from it? I'm so confused and want to understand. I want to appreciate the paintings these artists create. Most of these works are very good regardless, but I can't make my mind see how they are poetry. I just always believed poetry at least had RHYTHM for emotional emphasis. Please teach me something. (an example comes to mind- a lot of Bukowski's poems, and the work of similar authors)
     
  2. arron89
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    arron89 Banned

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    If someone says something's a poem, then it is. Whether or not it's any good is a different question entirely--not all free verse poetry is good free verse poetry--but there's no specific definition of free verse that requires it to have any particular feature. Don't get hung up on whether or not a work is poetry or not--if the author says it is, then it is. Instead, critique the poem itself to see if it's successful or not.
     
  3. Cade Johnson
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    Cade Johnson Member

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    Good advice heard well, I assure you. I just get a little tripped up by poets as famous as some of them are who wrote things I cannot see a poetic element in. Thank you for the input.
     

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