You will no doubt thank me for sparing you my long winded, boring monologue. I have decided that I do not know much about the subject and should be reading, instead of writing about it. I still believe I have something to bring to this conversation, but first, perhaps, just maybe, others might possibly have already Asked and Answered some of my questions and I should not assume too much about my own understanding.
If you have a question, assume it has already been Asked and Answered. This has been my mantra concerning my main form of writing: computer code. There is an open secret among programmers that a large percentage of their job is formulating accurate internet search criteria that will bring back the precise solution to their immediate problem (usually, on the first page of results). If you have a question, assume it has already been Asked and Answered, all within easy reach from your friendly neighborhood internet browser.
And today, while looking up “poetry forms” for inclusion in My Very Own Definition of Poetry, I stumbled on a recommendation for the first book in the list, below, and had a realization that may finally answer some of my questions, and hopefully elevate my own writing form to something that I would unabashedly label as Poetry.
I have often wondered how to get more readers of my poetry, and recently, more and more I have been concluding that the best solution is to write better poems. Learning what there is to learn might help, and to that end, I have reserved these at my friendly neighborhood public library:
A Poet’s Glossary
The Essential Haiku
How to read a poem
The Norton Anthology of Poetry (1975)*
Eastman, Arthur M., 1918- , Norton
It is a start, at least. Here’s to becoming a less sanctimonious, more sensitive, more intelligent poetry reader and perhaps even a better poet. Cheers!
*The Norton Anthology of Poetry was the first book of poems we were given to study in CCHS [Cass City High School]. I remember it fondly and am looking forward to seeing it again. Donne, Frost, Whitman, Shakespeare, … Hope it is the exact same edition.