Category: Ramblings of a Chaotic Mind

defining poetry

I’ve been reading different thoughts towards the various styles of poetry here recently and even more recently a certain opinion about the definition of a poet, down to even the choice and repetition of words. This has sparked a nerve in me that I simply needed to express my frustration about. What better an outlet than here, where like minded writers, poets, photographers, simply artists as a collective, live.

Poetry is defined as a type of literature that conveys a thought, describes a scene or tells a story in a concentrated, lyrical arrangement of words. For starters, I don’t think one can truly put a label on poetry. Sometimes they rhyme. Sometimes they don’t. Sometimes they are short, sometimes long. Okay yes sure, one can write in a certain structure such as sonnets or haiku’s. But even still, there is no “wrong” way to write poetry. At least that is my opinion. I’m a free verse lover. Just like my fictional writing, I’m a panster. I plan NOTHING. I just write and just like when I was a kid with coloring, almost always outside of the lines. I once read somewhere, a good writer is one that doesn’t feel the need to edit their words written in the middle of the night. Can’t help but think that’s where the true heart of a writer lives.

I’m personally a huge fan of micro poetry, which brings me to the largest debate. It would seem those of us that write “short and sweet” are being shamed for our lack of true length of what poetry should be.  (I invite you to reread the definition of poetry as I cited up there with emphasis on that lovely word straight out of the dictionary, concentrated.)  I mean please, tell me, is their a guidebook out there somewhere that recites a word count to the true definition of what equates to a poem? Anyone? Anyone? Yeah. thought so. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge lover of the classics. My God Edgar Allan is a rockstar and that Keats and Thoreau…more please. But does that mean the “micro” writer like myself is any less phenomenal? I don’t think so. If anything I think it becomes even more a talent, an art, to be able to move someone in such a way in as few words as possible.  Just today a coworker came up to me, after having read my latest poetry book which contains poems of only ten words, and said to me how do you manage to pack such a punch in so few words! Of course I was beaming. Any writer would react the same at such praise. I often think of this piece by Ernest Hemingway when I adapt to this logic:

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or a slightly longer piece:

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Secondly, shame on those that even judge and ridicule another writer in the first place. Perhaps they themselves are feeling slightly insecure within their own writing (news flash we all feel this way about our writing) that they feel the need to lash out at another. Or maybe they are just that old fart sitting in the corner bemoaning how us young folks got it all wrong. (Sorry to all you old farts I do love the ones in the corner rooting us young folks on)

Speaking of young folks. I’ve recently taken to utilizing my Instagram site for more than just my gallery of photography as I discovered quite the community of poets and writers alike over there. I have been in awe over and over and over again at the words I’m reading, passionately so by the likes of teens and twenty somethings.  This is where I must admit to eating crow upon talking one night to a fellow writer of my discovery and pegging Instagram as the “young crowd” and seemingly “angsty”. I ate my own words not long after that upon discovering these talented young souls that write both in quick snippets and long passages.

Lastly, I think it is imperative for us to embrace one another within whatever writing community we find ourselves in. We are a unique lot. We strive to be our own voice. Whether that’s in short waves or long cruise ship journey’s, it makes no difference. As long as we continue to be true to ourselves, even if that puts us out there by ourselves amongst the Emily’s and Poe’s of the world. Don’t be afraid to be a Hemingway. Do you. Don’t let anyone tell you that you’re simply writing in a “trend” If so, it’s the longest damn trend I’ve seen still going strong.

I’d love to hear your opinions or if you want to share that you’ve experienced this. Thank you for taking the time to read this. Be kind to each other.

 

j

 

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crow

I almost didn’t include this here for its meaning was somehow taken in a negative context when from its inception it was to lend strength to the fact that we all have setbacks in healing. I refuse to always write fluffy (mind you I adore fluffy) because we aren’t always walking around pooping rainbows riding unicorns.

Whether it be from abuse, addiction, heartbreak, depression. Part of the growth comes from the fall. Those peripherals can often be silent little daggers just waiting as we walk along the path we pave for ourselves with every intent to travel cautiously and wisely. We can’t avoid them but we can arm ourselves with the tools and the recognition of knowing when the daggers are there in order to help us stitch the wounds if they find enough strength to hit dead center.

The courage to recognize that we have stumbled can be the biggest crow of all (on a side note I personally find crows majestic but just like everything else in life, society has programmed us to believe they are demonic and depressing so for that reason I turn to them for expression)

We aren’t perfect. And when you feel as if your family, your friends, your children, your spouse, your coworkers all have eyes on you it can perhaps be difficult to admit failure. That’s where shame and guilt struggle taking a back seat and that’s when the recognition of just how imperative it is to have your own personal arsenal of cheerleaders shines like a beacon in the night.

As we approach a new year, a new decade, I thank you for taking the time to read this and i hope this finds you well and offers comfort and a reminder this is a dirty pretty world we live in. We are all walking each other home.

always looking for my ray of light

-J

~coffee syrup kisses~

take me back to 

ice cream cones 

in bistro chairs 

where our 

happily ever after 

began its love affair 

where a northern wind 

in its subtle state

whisked away fears

drying silent tears

that day when  

nothing or no one 

could quite capture 

our very visible rapture 

as coffee syrup kisses grew wings 

climbing to meet the raven 

our solitude, our haven 

~holiday~

let us take holiday on the moon 

whilst the sun serenades eyes heavy 

floating to a magician’s tune 

won’t you build me a swing 

slowly sing to me 

that song you like to sing 

for then we shall fly 

collecting constellations 

barefoot in a night sky 

whisper sweetly like you do 

as the stars giggle 

when my cheeks change hue 

let us take holiday on the moon 

with no thoughts 

of ever returning soon 

costumes and masquerades

Sir Frederic’s symphony lent the stage

to the dance of lovers past 

ghosts they were in a quadrille

for the scroll began its journey

finding the language within the vein

tipping 

dripping 

a heart familiar 

of lifetimes lost 

and regained 

with each turn of this masquerade

the other knew 

no matter the venitian shade 

a language scripted from long ago 

etched there for familiar fingers to find 

upon flesh divine 

to reread over and over again 

as Sir Fredric’s symphony was set to rewind 

~the path most traveled~

that trip you find

as you close your eyes,

the one that needs not a map

nor latest trendy technology,

but simply a heart that adores

the one where the path naturally soars

beyond rocky crags and tree-lines

to the river that flows below

that place where a heart

simply knows its glow

hints of laughter filled clouds

floating between chocolate kisses

to bygone gestures

in a gentleman’s chivalry

to cordial wishes

given in exclusively

that trip you find

as you close your eyes

the one where courage

sinks below the whys

for spaces silent know the way

of two lovers traveled

never cognizant or of ability to betray