Is Poetry Important?

When the time came for me to start writing this blog, I did what any self-respecting professional would do—I turned to my kids for help.

Me: “Okay kids, do you think poetry is important?”

Kid #1: “Yes, Mom.”

Me: (She’s 15 years old and thinks she’s mastered the most efficient way to get her mother to stop bothering her.) “Nice try. Seriously. I want you to think about it and I want you to be honest, even if you think I will disagree.”

She texts me later that day…

“Yes. It allows people to express themselves and helps to simplify or complicate things that are happening in the world, putting things in a different light.”

Hmmm..sounds textbook-like to me, but she’s clearly not into this conversation, so I move on to the younger one.

Kid #2: (10 year old girl) “Poetry is important because it can teach a lesson, like ‘sharing is caring’. It rhymes, but it makes you think about the lesson.”

Cute right?

As simple as their responses may be, it’s a great starting point for me to explore whether or not poetry is relevant today. In a society where success is largely measured by wealth, is poetry pointless?

I struggle with this topic because it’s strikes a very personal chord for me. You see…I’m a poet, and as Robert Frost said, “To be a poet is a condition, not a profession.” And oh boy, do I know this to be true.

I can’t help but write poetry. I’ve been doing it since I learned to put pen to paper. When I was a child, I didn’t even know that what I wrote was called poetry. It wasn’t until I started learning about poets at school that I realized it was a thing, a legitimate thing.

Once the floodgates opened, there was no turning back. I devoured any poetry I could get my hands on. But, by the time my tumultuous teenage years came about, I realized that anything important and meaningful I had ever read was written by people who were all dead. And in came the full-fledged angst.

I figured I could never make a career out of being a poet, so I never shared my work.

But what if everyone did what I’ve done? What if poetry was never shared? If the works of poets have shaped my very essence, couldn’t it have done the same for others?

And so my quest begins…to highlight the ways poetry makes a difference and why we need to be paying attention.

 

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12 thoughts on “Is Poetry Important?

  1. Awesome Rosie 👏 & Congrats 🍾 to you for fullfilling this part of your journey . You have a unique personality and you are always articulate and well spoken .
    I think you have a genuine talent and it’s time to expose it to the world 🌎.

    I’m not a Poetry advocate but I think Poetry can impact people’s lives significantly, it is a form art & expression, and I too find myself leaning towards Poetry for inspiration , which this society needs a lot more of .
    So write away girl, and do what you do best , I wish you much success !

    Like

  2. Hi! Great post and great blog! I do love poetry as well… on my high-school final exam I wrote an essay called “Is Poetry still possible in the XXI century?” My favourite poet is the Chilean Pablo Neruda, have you ever watched the movie “The Postman”? The main character once says to Neruda: “Poetry doesn’t belong to those who write it; it belongs to those who need it.” looking forward to the next post!

    Like

    • Thanks for your comment Elena! I’ve been meaning to post on your blog too. That quote from The Postman, I’ve had a professor tell me the exact same thing in an attempt to get me to publish. In theory, it’s exactly right, but to let go…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This blog is going to be interesting! I look forward to reading what you have to say. I am a writer, not renowned in anyway, but I am a writer because of what it does for me. I do not write poetry per se, but I have written lyrics (I suppose that is some form of poetry, with rhythm and beat). I am writing a book I started 10 years ago, and that’s probably why it is not done yet, because I believe writing is never finished, it is never perfect, it is always something that remains incomplete and needing more. I think poetry is very much like that, something that poses a question, thought, or feeling, that leaves you wondering and wanting to learn more, as if the words you are reading are holding the answers.

    You said “I’ve been doing it since I learned to put pen to paper.” Do you find that you are more inspired and insightful when writing with your preferred pen, the way ink sinks in as letters join and words form as the pen scratches across the paper?

    Look forward to future posts.

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    • Thank you for your comment! To answer your question about pen to paper…yes, it’s my preferred method. I sometimes write longer poems on my laptop, but it always feels more organic when I use a pen…actually, to be more specific, I prefer pencil :).

      Like

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