I ask this because I was checking out my spam comments. Much to my amusement, most of the spam went into a couple of my poetry posts. I jokingly thought that all of my poetry was getting all the icky commentary. Oh well, at least some of the spam had some nice attempts to inflate my ego. Too bad the compliments were fake and came from random emails that were obviously generated by a bot. Poetry though… I think it’s easy for anybody to maintain a love/hate relationship with it.
For me personally, I like poetry that uses different word meanings and colorful language (not the dirty colorful language, mind you). However, I prefer that the poetry not have to be cryptic. Honestly, it’s only fun to decode a poem’s possible meaning when you have a bunch of English nerds by your side to annotate the crap out of a copy of poetry. I did this in class once and I thought it was enjoyable. Though I did realize that it would’ve been hell to do it by myself.
Reading shouldn’t be hell, whether you do it by yourself or with some friends. Prose should be easy on the eyes, and should excite the inner voice in your head that reads out the words to you. I don’t mind having a few new words to learn in a poem, but I’d like to have the poet’s intent to be more clear. For whatever reason, humans seem to like the poetry that might not have any kind of meaning at all, pretentious poetry that just enjoys slapping a bunch of words together. I have a friend who likes to make this into a kind of sport, so he just puts a bunch of words together that sound nice together.
Poetry of course, is not all about a bunch of words that sound nice together. It’s about expressing an author’s emotion while at the same time bending a few rules that would normally restrain regular prose. I for one, would like to have a poet’s intent fairly clear to me from the get-go; it makes it easier to relate to the poet in terms of their emotion and message. It will make poetry both more accessible and interesting, while simultaneously eliminating the “misunderstood poet” stereotype.
Like all of my posts, this one is up for discussion. What do you think about poetry?