Poetry Hit Rate

craner

Beast of Burden
Rimbaud was a good formalist, as was Bauderlaire, Rilke, all your symbolist, impressionist modernist favorites. I'm not saying you can't junk form to write great literature, some mangled form between prose and poetry for example, but you certainly can't write a poem without understand the form of poetry. Poetry is, essentialy, verse, song.

I am not trying to burst your pretensions, or Bukowski's, but that's just the way it is. Poetry is music, made by words. There has to be, at the very least, rhythm to justify it, if not classical scansion.

A rather muddled argument between Luke and I happened years ago on this subject, and has continued ever since. Just for context.
 

nomadthethird

more issues than Time mag
Rimbaud was a good formalist, as was Bauderlaire, Rilke, all your symbolist, impressionist modernist favorites. I'm not saying you can't junk form to write great literature, some mangled form between prose and poetry for example, but you certainly can't write a poem without understand the form of poetry. Poetry is, essentialy, verse, song.

I am not trying to burst your pretensions, or Bukowski's, but that's just the way it is. Poetry is music, made by words. There has to be, at the very least, rhythm to justify it, if not classical scansion.

A rather muddled argument between Luke and I happened years ago on this subject, and has continued ever since. Just for context.
You can't junk form to write good music either, but you can't get too hung up on it either, that's all.

Do you think good prose doesn't need rhythm or musicality? I think it does.

PS I'd never heard of Guyotat until someone wrote about him on their blog last year and boy is he great.
 
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josef k.

Dangerous Mystagogue
Rimbaud was a good formalist, as was Bauderlaire, Rilke, all your symbolist, impressionist modernist favorites. I'm not saying you can't junk form to write great literature, some mangled form between prose and poetry for example, but you certainly can't write a poem without understand the form of poetry. Poetry is, essentialy, verse, song.
But the question of what poetic form is doesn't seem to me to be a very easily answered question.

A song is something that walks on its own.
 

craner

Beast of Burden
I'm not really hung up on any of this; I just really like great writing. If it's there and it's beautiful, that's fine.

But to describe writing as "poetry" is different from defining a poem. It's not really a contentious point, except to the point now where, does poetry really exist as a legitimate form of expression. Probably not. In the sense of writing "poems".

As an adjective, poetry exists. It's waking up to a lovely morning, or hearing a good song, or spotting a Waxwing in a Supermarket carpark.
 

craner

Beast of Burden
A song is different: it's verse + music.

Poetry is verse. Until Shakespeare: then it's words with, and rubbing against form.

Blank verse. Still verse.

Will's Sonnets, still sonnets, though he shreds form, while retaining it, like all your junglist favs.

I mean: it's like Dillinja vs. Squarepusher at the end of the day, you understand?
 

craner

Beast of Burden
No, but more to the point, and more complex, is this:

IN A STATION OF THE METRO

The apparition of these faces in the crowd;
Petals on a wet black bough.
 

josef k.

Dangerous Mystagogue
This is one of my favourite poems, by Wolfram von Eschenbach, in Parzifal:


Ir sult niemer iuch verschemn.
verschamter lîp, waz touc der mêr?
der wont in der mûze rêr,
dâ im werdekeit entrîset.

Or:

You must never lose your sense of shame.
If one is past all shame what is one fit for?
One lives like a bird in moult,
shedding good qualities like plumes all pointing down to Hell

Very German!
 

empty mirror

remember the jackalope
that pound jawn is good

totally unsolicited but i punched this one in last year:

ok octopus

ok octopus has eight tentacles
and can be eaten alive in a cinema
dead inside a person in a bad bathtub
or with speed lines
intimately animated and larger than the ship it
is pulling into the deep
 
not sure I would call that poetry Josef.

The Pound imagist poems are really excellent. So are the Cantos and the Noh translations.

i've been into Russian Futurism for a while now:

"To All and Everything"

"No.
It can’t be.
No!
You too, beloved?
Why? What for?
Darling, look -
I came,
I brought flowers,
but, but... I never took
silver spoons from your drawer!

Ashen-faced,
I staggered down five flights of stairs.
The street eddied round me. Blasts. Blares.
Tires screeched.
It was gusty.
The wind stung my cheeks.
Horn mounted horn lustfully.

Above the capital’s madness
I raised my face,
stern as the faces of ancient icons.
Sorrow-rent,
on your body as on a death-bed, its days
my heart ended.

You did not sully your hands with brute murder.
Instead,
you let drop calmly:
“He’s in bed.
There’s fruit and wine
On the bedstand’s palm.”

Love!
You only existed in my inflamed brain.
Enough!
Stop this foolish comedy
and take notice:
I’m ripping off
my toy armour,
I,
the greatest of all Don Quixotes!

Remember?
Weighed down by the cross,
Christ stopped for a moment,
weary.
Watching him, the mob
yelled, jeering:
“Get movin’, you clod!”

That’s right!
Be spiteful.
Spit upon him who begs for a rest
on his day of days,
harry and curse him.
To the army of zealots, doomed to do good,
man shows no mercy!

That does it!

I swear by my pagan strength -
gimme a girl,
young,
eye-filling,
and I won’t waste my feelings on her.
I'll rape her
and spear her heart with a gibe
willingly.

An eye for an eye!

A thousand times over reap of revenge the crops'
Never stop!
Petrify, stun,
howl into every ear:
“The earth is a convict, hear,
his head half shaved by the sun!”

An eye for an eye!

Kill me,
bury me -
I’ll dig myself out,
the knives of my teeth by stone — no wonder!-
made sharper,
A snarling dog, under
the plank-beds of barracks I’ll crawl,
sneaking out to bite feet that smell
of sweat and of market stalls!

You'll leap from bed in the night’s early hours.
“Moo!” I’ll roar.
Over my neck,
a yoke-savaged sore,
tornados of flies
will rise.
I'm a white bull over the earth towering!

Into an elk I’ll turn,
my horns-branches entangled in wires,
my eyes red with blood.
Above the world,
a beast brought to bay,
I'll stand tirelessly.

Man can’t escape!
Filthy and humble,
a prayer mumbling,
on cold stone he lies.
What I’ll do is paint
on the royal gates,
over God’s own
the face of Razin.

Dry up, rivers, stop him from quenching his thirst! Scorn him!
Don’t waste your rays, sun! Glare!
Let thousands of my disciples be born
to trumpet anathemas on the squares!
And when at last there comes,
stepping onto the peaks of the ages,
chillingly,
the last of their days,
in the black souls of anarchists and killers
I, a gory vision, will blaze!

It’s dawning,
The sky’s mouth stretches out more and more,
it drinks up the night
sip by sip, thirstily.
The windows send off a glow.
Through the panes heat pours.
The sun, viscous, streams down onto the sleeping city.

O sacred vengeance!
Lead me again
above the dust without
and up the steps of my poetic lines.
This heart of mine,
full to the brim,
in a confession
I will pour out.

Men of the future!
Who are you?
I must know. Please!
Here am I,
all bruises and aches,
pain-scorched...
To you of my great soul I bequeath
the orchard."

- Vladimir Mayakovsky (1916)
 

jenks

thread death
Talk of Imagism reminds me of a great lost poet - T E Hulme

A touch of cold in the Autumn night –
I walked abroad,
And saw the ruddy moon lean over a hedge
Like a red-faced farmer.
I did not stop to speak, but nodded,
And round about were the wistful stars
With white faces like town children.

I am broadly in agreement with Craner.
Poetry is music, made by words. There has to be, at the very least, rhythm to justify it
In the end poetry is form. I tell the pupils I teach it's stuff that doesn't go to the end of the page.

Nomad is right about the best prose - it is shaped and has rhythms and a sense of movement. Steinbeck, who has been discussed elsewhere in Lit threads has a great ear and can be read aloud in much the way good poetry can be.
 

vimothy

yurp
Good form

One should never disagree with Craner, especially when he's right.

Still, I think Lennon said it best: "The blues is a chair... the first chair."
 

Corpsey

call me big papa
I prefer prose.

I know this probably points to some sort of deficiency in my understanding of poetry, however.
 
Talk of Imagism reminds me of a great lost poet - T E Hulme

A touch of cold in the Autumn night –
I walked abroad,
And saw the ruddy moon lean over a hedge
Like a red-faced farmer.
I did not stop to speak, but nodded,
And round about were the wistful stars
With white faces like town children.

I am broadly in agreement with Craner.
Poetry is music, made by words. There has to be, at the very least, rhythm to justify it
In the end poetry is form. I tell the pupils I teach it's stuff that doesn't go to the end of the page.
good call on TE Hulme. James Joyce wrote some excellent poetry when he was 19, but it's hard to find. One of his best books is called "Gas from a Lit Burner" - "Chamber Music" is also worth reading if you don't mind Joyce's piss fetish (Chamber Music = the chamber pot)
 
http://philoctetes.org/event/247/

here's an excerpt from Gas From a Lit Burner:

Ladies and gents, you are here assembled
To hear why earth and heaven trembled
Because of the black and sinister arts
Of an Irish writer in foreign parts.
He sent me a book ten years ago.
I read it a hundred times or so,
Backwards and forwards, down and up,
Through both the ends of a telescope.
I printed it all to the very last word
But by the mercy of the Lord
The darkness of my mind was rent
And I saw the writer's foul intent.
But I owe a duty to Ireland:
I held her honour in my hand,
This lovely land that always sent
Her writers and artists to banishment
And in a spirit of Irish fun
Betrayed her own leaders, one by one.
'Twas Irish humour, wet and dry,
Flung quicklime into Parnell's eye;
'Tis Irish brains that save from doom
The leaky barge of the Bishop of Rome
For everyone knows the Pope can't belch
Without the consent of Billy Walsh.
O Ireland my first and only love
Where Christ and Caesar are hand and glove!
O lovely land where the shamrock grows!
(Allow me, ladies, to blow my nose)
To show you for strictures I don't care a button
I printed the poems of Mountainy Mutton
And a play he wrote (you've read it I'm sure)
Where they talk of 'bastard', 'bugger' and 'whore'
And a play on the Word and Holy Paul
And some woman's legs that I can't recall
Written by Moore, a genuine gent
That lives on his property's ten per cent:
I printed mystical books in dozens:
I printed the table-book of Cousins
Though (asking your pardon) as for the verse
'Twould give you a heartburn on your arse:
I printed folklore from North and South
By Gregory of the Golden Mouth:
I printed poets, sad, silly and solemn:
I printed Patrick What-do-you-Colm:
I printed the great John Milicent Synge
Who soars above on an angel's wing
In the playboy shift that he pinched as swag
From Maunsel's manager's travelling-bag.
But I draw the line at that bloody fellow
That was over here dressed in Austrian yellow,
Spouting Italian by the hour
To O'Leary Curtis and John Wyse Power
And writing of Dublin, dirty and dear,
In a manner no blackamoor printer could bear.
Shite and onions! Do you think I'll print
The name of the Wellington Monument,
Sydney Parade and Sandymount tram,
Downes's cakeshop and Williams's jam?
I'm damned if I do-- I'm damned to blazes!
Talk about _Irish Names of Places!_
It's a wonder to me, upon my soul,
He forgot to mention Curly's Hole.
No, ladies, my press shall have no share in
So gross a libel on Stepmother Erin.
I pity the poor-- that's why I took
A red-headed Scotchman to keep my book.
Poor sister Scotland! Her doom is fell;
She cannot find any more Stuarts to sell.
My conscience is fine as Chinese silk:
My heart is as soft as buttermilk.
Colm can tell you I made a rebate
Of one hundred pounds on the estimate
I gave him for his Irish Review.
I love my country-- by herrings I do!
I wish you could see what tears I weep
When I think of the emigrant train and ship.
That's why I publish far and wide
My quite illegible railway guide,
In the porch of my printing institute
The poor and deserving prostitute
Plays every night at catch-as-catch-can
With her tight-breeched British artilleryman
And the foreigner learns the gift of the gab
From the drunken draggletail Dublin drab.
Who was it said: Resist not evil?
I'll burn that book, so help me devil.
I'll sing a psalm as I watch it burn
And the ashes I'll keep in a one-handled urn.
I'll penance do with farts and groans
Kneeling upon my marrowbones.
This very next lent I will unbare
My penitent buttocks to the air
And sobbing beside my printing press
My awful sin I will confess.
My Irish foreman from Bannockburn
Shall dip his right hand in the urn
And sign crisscross with reverent thumb
_Memento homo_ upon my bum.
 
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