I was trying to explain poetry to my son. I started by pointing out the differences between rhyming and non-rhyming and fun vs serious. I was greeted with a blank face.
I then moved onto the rhythm of certain poems, the beat of the sentences, the syllables. Still the blank face stared back at me.
‘I get that mum.’ He said, ‘But what’s the point of so many opposite rules?’
He had a point. After a few minutes my advice to him, when confronted with a poetry writing task, was this.
‘Screw it. Just write a paragraph on the subject, throw in some metaphors, break it up into short sentences and tell your teacher it’s a poem.’
If you think about it, I’m not far wrong. Poems don’t have to rhyme, they hardly ever make sense and I doubt he’ll ever be challenged on it as I’m pretty sure that on this basis – anything goes. The more abstract the poem, the more likely he is to be considered a poetry genius.
Here’s an example. It’s essentially a long sentence broken down and pretending to be a poem. If you don’t see it, just cock your head to the side and stroke your chin in a thoughtful way. It’ll come to you.
A blanket of fog
restrains thoughts scattered
about the mind,
groping for an anchor
in the mental storm.
I’ll leave that thought with you 🙂
I’m such a great mum.