Prompt for RWJ, Prompt 301

I guess we marvel at technical brilliance. Like say, in writing a poem, do you try to layer on the sounds, the assonances, so that when one reads there’s a subtle musicality? Do you find end rhymes appealing to the ear, especially when one’s reading them aloud? It’s kind of satisfying too, if it’s not so predictable and hence awkward? I don’t really set musicality out as a goal, but sometimes I do it because it just feels satisfying, to just drop in the assonances. I hardly ever do end rhymes. I am more driven by the flow of thought and association. So often when I start a poem I hardly know what’s the end result. The end result often surprises me. What is really a criteria for me is that a poem’s thoughtful in a way that moves me. That’s feeling I reckon. Poetry is emotion recollected in tranquility, right, Wordsworth? Make us see a bit of that magic happening in your poem, where from the dark, as it were, a feeling or thought comes to the surface.


2 thoughts on “Prompt for RWJ, Prompt 301

  1. I too have not concerned myself with rhyming so much, though it sometimes is so easy to accomplish that I have to either follow or work harder to avoid it. I think rhyming can get in the way and have always thought so not only with my own poesy but also when reading others. It is no small feat, I think, to not only rhyme but make the rhymes so natural that they do not stand out as some kind of poetic posing that can get in the way of things. All the good poets can sometimes do great rhyme schemes but it is obvious that for every good scheme there are at least a few that are stilted and stupid.

    One of the problems is that rhyming seems the most obvious difference between poesy and prose. This leads many neophyte poets to think that rhyming is the whole thing. And that, of course, leads to volumes and volume of bad poetry which collect around rhyming schemes that have become of little use to serious poets because so much crap adheres to the schemes.


    Precious time is wasted counting the scars
    of our wounds when we should keep heads erect
    and eyes focused on the slow transit of stars.
    Why dwell on past injuries and neglect
    those treasures waiting to be discovered?
    Life’s an express train; it only stops twice,
    once at the birth station; once at life’s end.
    Fixating on scars, one pays a huge price.
    Instead of moving on, we never mend.
    Live the moments wisely. Forget past pain.
    What’s done is done. In time those scars will fade.
    The bright sun hidden by clouds will shine again.
    We have no clue how long our lives will be.
    We need to open doors and joy’s the key.


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