Poetry is about feelings. In the present poetic atmosphere, we seem to have lost our bearings; we are floating without power and purpose. We have wandered into some absurd strata where whether or not we use gerunds and participles somehow equates with good poetry. We have poetic forms where we write by blotting out words on a page. We have made poetry into an academic pursuit, instead of a form of communication between hearts and souls, and in the process, we have narrowed our audience to just our fellow poets who are pursuing the academic forms of poetry.
Poetry is not about form; it is about the message. It is struggling with the page until we compose the right combination of words to send a shiver down the spine of the reader or listener. It is shaping our words, images, and flow of thought and feeling, in such a way that it creates a vibration, a resonance, where the listener says, “Yesssss”. It is writing from the heart which uses the mind to form the thoughts on a page; not the other way around, where we write from the mind with the intent of somehow reaching the heart. It is sitting still with our eyes closed and waiting for the soul to activate the mind with words, thoughts, and images, and then trusting that these words do indeed have meaning. It is then going to work and taking the raw material from the soul and shaping it with the heart and the mind until the feelings flow onto the page, and we can stop and we say, “Yessssssss.”
Writing poetry is first a journey into our inner soul for the purpose of finding meaning and clarity. And for most of our poems, that is an end in itself. However, there is a deeper meaning and purpose on why we write poetry; it is meant ultimately to be shared. The power of the spoken word (not to be confused with the genre of Spoken Word) is that our voice and our presentation, the facial expressions, the body language, the rhythms of our words, lines, and stanzas, and THE VERY VIBRATIONS OF OUR SOUL, take our poetry and the voice of our heart into the heart and soul of another human being.
Poetry, above all, is a form of communication of sensations and feelings. The reader, or listener, should not have to wonder about the meaning of the poems, or the line, phrases, and word choices within the poems. The poem should flow with thoughts, words, and feelings in clarity and purpose. If that means adding a few bridge words to enhance the flow, so be it. If it means adding a few words that jar the reader because they seem to interrupt the flow so that confusion and uncertainty show the heart’s confusion and uncertainty, then so be it. If it means using full lines and full stanzas, so be it. If it means using rhyme and meter, so be it. If it means using capital letters and punctuation, so be it. The form has to enhance the communication of thoughts and feelings. Yes, there is room for all forms of poetry, but as poets, we must be conscious of what we are communicating. Fractured words and phrases have their purpose but that is to show uncertainty, confusion, or the wisps of a wandering mind. If that is what we wish to communicate, then so be it. It is our responsibility as poets to first be clear in our message and then to choose the appropriate form to get that message across to our listeners and readers with power and purpose. And if that does not fit into present day conventions in poetry, then so be it.
Dreams Can Come True
Two miles of shore line,
Oyster shells mingle
With tide-rounded stones,
Sea lions barking in the distance,
Eagles keeping watch,
Giant Dougs and Cedars guard the shore,
Calling quietly to come and touch,
To enjoy but never own.
Two people much in love
With each other and with life,
Without another human being in sight.
Dreams do come true,
For those who dare to dream,
Who understand the power of belief,
And wish with energy and power.
But the dream cannot be just for ourselves,
It must be in harmony with all that is.
I have opened my heart
To seeing all the possibilities,
And I am giving birth
To a vision to share,
To help others dream the dream
Of living free of pain,
Free of the blinding lights,
And the sounds of angst.
I am offering
A collection of moments
To enrich the heart,
And to fill the soul.