Poetry is a composition in verse or language, exhibiting conscious attention to patterns. The bolded are crucial to understanding the true nature of poems. Poetry has been in existence for centuries. As an art that survived centuries, I was curious to find out why lyrics are written for so long. And to those who write them, what they benefit from it. So in this blog post, we will focus on what a group of poets has to say on what they benefited from writing (poetry).
For me, poetry is more than an art…
Poetry is more than art. It can be produced and performed. It is styled and can rhyme. There’s a plot even. It tells stories. It creates fantasy and teaches in subtle ways. It has deeper meanings which may require a certain amount of attention and exposure for readers. Poetry made me see and understand life from a new perspective.
Poetry is rhythm played softly into the night by a lonesome guitarist. Poetry is songs that create emotions; it understands the times we live in, and play life’s videos. Poetry is the soul of meditation and reflection. Poetry is a bucket where all other forms of art grow from.
Many authors have different definitions and ideas of poetry. But this post is focused on what poetry has done for poets.
What has poetry done for you?
The truth is that there are reasons why we do the things we do. Be it for fun or business.
I will start with Philip Philo Kassner. Poetry dissipated his anger, helped him organise his thoughts, gained confidence, put him on the stage, and he met his wife. How poetry helped him meet his wife, he didn’t reveal, but that’s sweet to me. Allanah-Elizabeth Higgins says “it cracked me open to the very core and allowed my souls highest expression to flow through me.” Rupal Caricature said that poetry made him find another better way to spend time alone. I can relate to this. Erin El Kalla said it gave her the confidence to be herself. Artie Shorts gratefully said “It has reminded me how very very clever I am. Thanks, poetry!” Yaqub Muhktar opined, “Nothing materialistic… I enjoy its beauty and creating beauty. Poetry has made me happy and more self-confident. The joy of writing gladdens my mood.” Hear Helen Freya, “Writing it is currently helping me to work through some past trauma; reading it is helping me to connect to brilliant minds.” Evie Ivy said it made her world a beautiful place. Satischandran Matamp says “Some poems can heal and empower, breaking the glass ceiling. Some can bring hope to the disappointed and a breeze of consolation to the lost. Some poems are like sunrise, while some others are like the sunset. Final interpretation rests in the hands of the readers.” David Allen says “it gave me a great creative outlet and introduced me to some fascinating people.”
Arlene Rocero said that poetry helped keep her sanity. “It has helped me find out more of myself. It has helped me express my inner feelings and thoughts better by writing. It is significantly helping me a lot through my battles no one knows about.” Deborah Mears says “it made me laugh, cry, feel sad and mad. Brought out my creativity, humour and introspection. And I made a lot of great friends.” Cozett Dunn has this point: “Allowed me to create in higher states of consciousness and express more of my true self.” Tracy Pflieger has this opinion: “I find that poetry is a way for me to hit my deepest emotions when I actually allow myself to get into the writing of it.” Kondwani Stanley Simwaba said it kept him alive. Kenneth Wright writes that “poetry provides a tangible connection to that place in the mind where problems too big for me are under constant review.”
John Green says “it made me laugh, it has made me cry. It has made me ponder adversity and to wonder why. It has made sit in silence and awe, question the law, what has been established. Parts of society and those who have been blacklisted. Colours of the rainbow, LGBTQ, what people have been through, and what I have no clue. Lives touched by violence, touched by love, touched by more adversity, and those who have seen push come to shove. Where has poetry taken me? On journeys, most never want to experience. The pious, the fake, the real, and the deviant. I don’t relish where I have been, and it creates a pickle. It either pours down troubles, or it is a slight trickle.” That’s a pretty serious one. For Sara Bourland it helped her heal from severe traumatic brain injuries. Paul Gardiner says it opened his mind. Paul Armando Gabuat says it made him a better writer. Here is Steve Howards: “Provided me with yet another neurological gibberish translation device.” Jarmara Black said, “it kept me reasonably sane through some callous times.” Beaux Thorburn said it showed her inherent talent and (which) is so good for venting. Justin Robert said, “not to be dramatic, but it has saved my life.”
Hobby Jones says, “I never thought to look at it that way, but it’s done a lot – taught me to read closely and write carefully, helped me parse my thoughts and feelings, given me fresh perspectives on the world (inside and out), filled my mind with ideas and my heart with song, and provided many, many hours of mindful pleasure. So, thanks, Poetry! You have my undying gratitude.” Alex Silverstein opined “The poem is the prize from having something awful to deal with or it can be an expression of appreciation for something good that has happened. What has it done for me? Made me a little more brave by sharing how vulnerable.” Josh Smith says “It gives me a space to express how I feel without the worry of being judged. Words I’d like to say to people, but can’t, or wouldn’t know how to word it otherwise.” Kristy Lewandoski says “Given light, helped me to understand things that I couldn’t name on my own, helped me not to feel alone, made me feel alive, feel inspired, taken me on adventures, given roads to empathy and insight into life and humanity. So much!”
Steven M. Mwalusi has this to say ” it made me find another way of living. It will outlast me and speak to future generations.” I sincerely adore the outlasting part. Mohammed Ahmed Daldoum says “I use what I write to understand myself, it helped me to cope with life and overcome my insecurities.”
For me, it has connected me to people whom ordinarily I wouldn’t have met. I became confident in my writing and can imagine anything.
What is your take on this? How has poetry benefited you as the writer?
DEADLIEST CRAFT by Colin Smith
To scream softly is the poet’s gift — one of the whispers so gentle as to shatter illusions, then to expose the power of truth and beauty.
The poets of the war have held the souls of so many. Yet the poets of love, for a moment, have stilled the hearts of lovers yet to be.
Simple poetry in natural form describes the elegance of a tree or anything as it may be.
Poetry is the science of language sharpened, the expression of Gods, as the ancients now speak to those who care to listen.
Practice this most deadly craft, for it can stir an army to sweet victory.
The Wife I Never Had by Bernard Arkoh Asante
Poetry turned my pain into art
After I lost someone, I loved dearly
My college girlfriend called Ruby
To another man, Another Bernard
The pain was the genesis of this special gift
As I let the blood within my veins
Flow-through my pen; I scribbled my first masterpiece in a fine piece like Italian tapestry.