Thursday, May 26, 2011

Poetic thoughts

Last night a well known poet came and performed at my cinema. He's kind of a rock-star poet in that he is as well known for performing his poetry as he is for writing it. While I was watching him, I realized that because the poetry is so personal to him, only he can read it the way it is meant to be read. I've never been a fan of his work; on the page it isn't that interesting. But seeing him say the words himself, imbuing them with the personal experiences behind the words, they took on a new life.

Which made me think about poetry in general. I'm not a huge fan. I know it's supposed to be the most difficult and pure form of writing, but I've never really enjoyed reading poetry, and I like writing it even less. Not because it's difficult, but because the various structures and styles always seem constricting. I guess I just don't like rules.

I wonder if it is possible to truly understand poetry without the author's voice reading it. Which would make understanding much of the 'great' poetry of the ages difficult...

Any thoughts on poetry? And just to finish off this post, here, have a poem. I wrote it, but I hope you can understand it without me reading it for you.


Music pulsing, pounding;

ears humming and buzzing with bass.

On stage,

writhing rockers shriek their wailing lament to the beat.

I join,

screaming approval,

twisting my body in time.

Outstretched hands contact famous flesh.

Palms touching,

an electric current flows between us.

Eyes - blue meets brown

sparks fly.

Instant attraction promises

fulfilment of carnal desires.

Backstage sex is brief,


Fiery breath searing hoarse dry throat,

tongue probing,

sudden stabbing pain.

Commitments made,

broken moments later when he leaves,

leather scent following skeletal frame.

Crumpled doll me,

left on a filthy staircase,

glass shards underfoot.

Abandoned again,

used up.



  1. I really liked your poem. It told a story and I could follow it the whole way without you reading it aloud.

    I'm on the fence with poetry. Some I like (e.g., Langston Huges' Weary Blues), but I struggle with the analysis. In the end I just feel inadequate and stupid.

    But I believe most poetry is like a play. It's meant to be read aloud to hear the inflections and rhythm. Often reading aloud helps you understand the poem more.

  2. I agree with you about poetry. I don't enjoy writing or reading it.

    I have a friend from high school who does poetry slams and watching him perform is amazing. I gues it really does depend on the author and them performing it because reading it on the page rarely does anything for me.

    I assume I read your poem right and it made me sad. Alone is sometimes the worst thing to be.