There are times when prose is not enough to express emotions. Poetry, however, allows for feelings to be set into natural spoken melody using words with metre. Disciplined poetry, with rhyme and clear metric form sometimes feels forced. I’ve tried many styles, but always searched for liberation. Norman MacCaig’s free verse showed me how to do this. A poetic line, correctly built, can be as emotive as a painting.
I now write poetry most days. My work tends to be created from immediate hits of emotion, when I’m inspired to scribble something quickly. Little Shrew is an example: this tiny thing ran out in front of my car whilst on a back road in Scotland, and the words were in my head in a moment. Longer free verse requires a little more reflection. Free verse is based upon impulse, but I do sometimes enjoy constructing poems in a more formal way.
Ultimately, poetry helps my writing to have rhythm, which adds colour and emotion to a story. Singers exercise their voices, writers should exercise their words. My poems are loosely categorised here under: Nature; Places; People; Time; and Me.
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