A Journey in Poetry

fwf kellie elmore badgeMy poetic journey has been threaded through many aspects of my life.

I remember reading poetry with our teachers at school as part of our English curriculum. There were times I did not “get it” and, on reflection, I think that was because I was young had not yet experienced all that life throws at you. However, there were poems that we read that captured my attention. The first time a poem really stood out for me was when I was in grade 7. We were doing the First World War in History and our teacher introduced us to the poetry that had been written by soldiers who had fought in the war. Wilfred Owen’s poem, Dulce et Decorum Est, struck a chord in me as I read the words describing the soldiers dying in the trenches.

English at university level introduced me to even more beautiful poetry: my favourite poet became William Blake as I explored his written words with my classmates; and the epic poem by John Milton titled Paradise Lost captured my interest. I read these poems more than once during the year I studied them and I still have their tomes gracing my bookshelves.

Now I read poetry for pleasure. I enjoy the imagery that is created in my mind, the turn of phrase, the succinct description of an emotion or event. There have been moments when I have tried my hand at writing poetic verse on a whim (some of you may have even read some of my attempts!). I have discovered that

Poetry is:

A manner of expression,

A way to create and bring pleasure.

Poetry encapsulates

A thought,

An experience,

A desire,

with words and forms that capture the mind.

Poetry reflects the world we live in,

the environment we experience.

Poetry mirrors life.

Do you enjoying reading, and even creating, poetry?

(This post was inspired by Kellie Elmore – a poet who creates beautiful imagery. Join her and her writing bandits for this week’s prompt)

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2014

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42 thoughts on “A Journey in Poetry

  1. I really enjoyed the poetry we studied at school especially the World War I section although I do agree that you need to be older to understand the full meaning. I also read poetry to my children when they were small but despite this I have to confess I don ‘t read poetry now.

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  2. It took doing a degree to instil in me an appreciation for poetry which goes beyond a rhythmic metre and slavishly accurate rhyme. I still prefer the more classical modes, though, as I do in music.
    Creating doggerel is easy. Poetry where every word is weighed is incredibly hard work. I have really sweated over the few ‘serious’ poems I have managed to produce.

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  3. Dear Colline
    Poetry has always been to me a way to express deep thoughts and feelings I cannot really express another way. It is sort of a stress reliever.
    Blessings XX
    Mia

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    1. I think of to a time when more people used to spend their time writing poetry. It is certainly a beautiful way to express oneself, is’t it Nia? Have a wonderful day today.

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  4. I have really come to enjoy poetry very much late in my life. I was inspired to write it through the encouragement of a fellow writer when WordPress’ April poetry challenge came up last spring. Now, I love writing it but never aspire to traditional forms. Free verse for me!

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  5. You have a wonderful poetic background. Mine is a checkered past; my father and his sister taught me age inappropriate verse (several of which I can still recite). Next were song lyrics — having no musical talent, the rhyme stuck with me, and I can recite both children’s records –” the Teddy Bear’s Picnic” and songs from the soundtracks of Broadway musicals my parents played on their hi fi.
    I don’t remember much about poetry in school — only a few short poems, and reading parts of the Poe’s, the raven on “bring a poem to class day.” I remember a horrible limerick I wrote in school, but forget the one I wrote many years later about a lovesick moose that won a prize from a local CBC radio station.
    I’ve been writing poetry of one sort or the other for years — from silly rhyming “odes” to free verse. Structured prescribed poems are my downfall — haikus, AB AB BB AA, etc.

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    1. I have difficulty with the structured poems as well Phylor.
      Your comment has reminded me of something – that many of the lyrics that we listen to when we are listening to music are actually poetry. Many of these were learnt when I was a child from listening to the radio and my parents records (yes, those vinyl discs 🙂 ). Thinking of it now, I guess the hymns we sang at church and in the choir were also a form of poetry.

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  6. a gentle lyrical poem about poetry , I love it Colline … you have reminded me that some of my first poetry was written as a young woman when I lived in Detroit for a year … it was a way of making sense of the different culture and world around me 🙂 Now I collect yoga poetry and poets like Rumi, Hafiz, Rilke, Mary Oliver, David White etc …

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  7. You are so right there Colline. I love reading poetry I can understand, not the type we had to learn in school and then explain what we read and still had no clue. LOL!

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  8. I really enjoy poetry Colline. Our welsh English master introduced me to the Liverpool poets when I was in secondary school and I now count John Donne, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Roger McGough and Ted Hughes among my personal favourites. I also like to write some myself from time to time 🙂

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  9. Owen is one of my favourite poets, and I often quote Dulce et Decorum est. When I post about Armistice/Remembrance Day (11 Nov in UK and Gib) I will usually use one of his poems for my post. Along with Owen, and Hughes, and Betjemen, the older ones we studied were Keats and Wordsworth (The Prelude). It seemed hard to study poetry at the time, but it left a long-lasting appreciation.

    I could never write rhyming verse at school, but I’ve done a few short poems on one of my blogs and people wrote kind comments to my amazement. I had a period a few years ago, when I would wake up with words swirling around my head, so had to quickly jot them down. That’s gone now, so I’m back to prose 😀

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  10. I’m dense with deep poetry. I don’t think there’s hope for me. There are just poems that are hard to decipher. I even follow some Haiku writers. I just like their posts. I told them straight up that I couldn’t understand some of what they’re trying to create.

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    1. I enjoy reading the haikus too – and admire what they have created knowing that I don’t have the ability to search for those required syllables. Free verse is more the style I write when I do write poetry.

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