We got a good vibe going in the café last week with the question, Are you a Poet? , and I was amazed and loved reading the poetic responses. This week I am going to try and keep the vibe going by taking things a step further back and asking, “What is Poetry?
I posed the question on my personal blog nearly a year ago and it is still the most read and commented on post. Despite all the responses I am still no further forward in being able to define what poetry is.
Standard dictionary definitions show poetry as;
1. The art or craft of writing verse.
2. Literature written in meter; verse.
3. Prose that resembles a poem in some respect, as in form or sound.
4. Poetic qualities, spirit or feeling in anything.
Does this take us any further forward? Maybe the suggestion around poetic qualities, spirit or feeling in anything, might start to scratch the surface.
Whilst I was pondering the question I read a poem, I burn gold, by the excellent poet yassy, and her lines, in my opinion, get closer to the answer.
“ I read my soul
I pluck verses
From the depths of my soul
I become poetry
and poetry becomes me…”
It is possible there is no definite answer and poetry is whatever it wants to be. In the spirit of last weeks poetic dance in the café, I offer the following thought and poem, in that poetry can never be defined; we can only offer metaphor in our pursuit of the answer – a bit like chasing butterflies.
An array of Cabbage White and
Red Admiral bask on lavender,
Teasing a pen to paper.
Cupped hands chase air – the
Butterfly nurtured to move
Beyond arms reach, leaving
A brain derelict for description.
All that’s left
Are vague shadows and
Scribbles on a half empty page.
What is poetry to you? I am looking forward to you bringing your thoughts and poetry to the café.