1. OurJud

    OurJud Contributor Contributor

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    Poetry by definition

    Discussion in 'Poetry' started by OurJud, Jun 15, 2018.

    If I compose a paragraph of a
    given length, and then divide it into
    lines, each consisting of five feet, it can
    be said I have employed the literary
    device known as pentameter. But does
    this make it a poem, technically?
     
  2. katina

    katina Active Member

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    I dont know what a pentameter is but I like the way you wrote this piece :)

    I find sticking to poetry rules restricting.
     
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  3. OurJud

    OurJud Contributor Contributor

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    It was just a silly thought and pretty much rhetorical as I'm not truly wondering if it constitutes poetry.

    Pentameter definition
     
  4. matwoolf

    matwoolf Contributor Contributor

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    There's a good forum called writeoutloud - they're all poets - you'd like them - and also 'Poetry' magazine - who, in my opinion this month they went totally bonkers. One poem consisted of a smudge, a grolly, and the word eternity written in period blood [according to his extensive notes].

    Read something simple like Larkin to see all that pentameter, it's pretty. But, why don't you say you've now passed pentameter 1 and write some poems for your/my pleasure?
     
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  5. OurJud

    OurJud Contributor Contributor

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    I will, when the desire to do so hits me.
     
  6. 8Bit Bob

    8Bit Bob Dang ol' boo, man. Contributor

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    While we had a very extensive conversation about this sort of thing over in the how do I write a poem thread, I'll put my thoughts here as well.

    Poetry is very subjective. The word has almost evolved to mean writing without rules. Heck, if I were a popular poet I could do something utterly ridiculous like Matwoolf suggested above and it would be considered a poem! It's much like the modern art world, which I personally am not too fond of.

    Now, if enough people call it poetry, I suppose it is in the eyes of the majority. I wouldn't consider what Matwoolf said above to be a poem, but the people who run that magazine seemed to think it was. Personally I enjoy poems with well defined structure, good imagery, character, etc. (what some would consider "rules"), but others may disagree.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is, if enough people call it poetry, then I suppose it is. I personally don't like the modern poetry (or art) scene, but that doesn't stop it from happening or others from enjoying it.

    Edit: Ah shoot, just saw this:
    My bad :oops:
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2018
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  7. matwoolf

    matwoolf Contributor Contributor

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    Yes, but these editors are bombarded with 10 000 submissions a month for a magazine running for 100 years- so, for example, they see patterns where we do not.

    [you see them yourself in creative writing]

    These are early days with my 'Poetry' subscription. Last month it was a lot of poems about being transgender/women & power/Chicago...it wasn't really my 'cup of tea,' but it's a magazine..with...kind of a heartbeat...or themes/political/social/ethnic...and not just a 'best in school' iambic pentameter quarterly. Maybe it was once? Then the editor shot himself.

    So this month there's poems - which I flick past - to read later - and then these smudges and amateur-art type pull-outs - which get all the attention - even discussed with a colleague - 'hey man, I've got this crummy magazine, ehmm...'

    'Pictures?'

    'Most certainly.'

    'Nice one, heh heh heh.'
     
  8. 8Bit Bob

    8Bit Bob Dang ol' boo, man. Contributor

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    Yes, and the art critics who praise Pollocks' work went to school for a long time, it doesn't mean I'll enjoy the piece any more if someone else claims it's "artsy" or "intuitive" or whatever their opinion is ;)

    ETA: I would just like to clarify that this was not supposed to be sarcastic or anything, I'm just expressing that other peoples' opinions on a piece don't always sway mine :p;)

    ETA2: Man, for some reason everything seems like it could be taken in a snarky or rude way when I type it out! I didn't mean to suggest that you let other peoples' opinions sway you in what I said above, so please don't take it that way.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2018
  9. katina

    katina Active Member

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    poetry is personal
    it is not about what others
    tell you to do
    it is about how you want it to be
    writing poetry is simply
    a transformation of words
    into a new movements of thoughts
    other would relate with and never
    assault.
     
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  10. JLT

    JLT Contributor Contributor

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    Sure. Why not?

    If you spray-paint two lines on the pavement in front of your house, perpendicular to the curb, do you create a parking space?
     
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  11. mashers

    mashers Contributor Contributor Community Volunteer

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    Oooooh, meta. I like it. Though, there's an error - there are 11 syllables on line 4. You could do "be said I have used the literary".
     
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  12. OurJud

    OurJud Contributor Contributor

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    @mashers - damn yes. I was pronouncing it ‘Li-ter-ey’
     
  13. mashers

    mashers Contributor Contributor Community Volunteer

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    I didn't know you could pronounce it that way, but look:

    Screen Shot 2018-06-19 at 14.12.44.png

    There are actually four valid pronunciations due to both of the inner syllables being optional.

    lit-e-re-ry
    lit-e-ry
    lit-re-ry

    and, presumably lit-ry, though I would find it very odd if somebody pronounced it that way.

    tl;dr: the line you wrote does have five feet if you pronounce 'literary' with three syllables :p
     
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  14. OB1

    OB1 Active Member

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    Poetry is like any other art, it is there to invoke an emotional response.

    Some might may have a good response i.e. positive or a bad response i.e negative. It is still a response

    The dictionary definition for poetry is:

    noun: poetry; plural noun: poetries
    1. literary work in which the expression of feelings and ideas is given intensity by the use of distinctive style and rhythm; poems collectively or as a genre of literature.
     
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  15. OurJud

    OurJud Contributor Contributor

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    Well that's nothing more than a coincidence (or some subconscious force at work) because when you called me on it and I realised my mistake I was with you. Lit-e-re-ry (4 syllables). I assumed it was just down to laziness on my part that I'd been pronouncing it 'lit-e-ry'.
     
  16. mashers

    mashers Contributor Contributor Community Volunteer

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    Well then I’m happy to have confirmed you were right all along... after making you think you were wrong :p
     
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