Sunday, September 8, 2013

Why I Was Scared Away From Writing Poetry When I Was Young

I thought that one of the things that scared me away from poetry when I was younger, like most people, was all the rules to writing poetry. But I discovered something this past week that has me looking at it differently.

I recently ordered and received a book in the mail, The New Book of Forms: A Handbook of Poetics. I ordered this book because I love, LOVE, exploring Shadow Poetry and the different types of traditional and invented poetry types that they have listed with all of their simple (mostly) instructions and sample poetry that makes it fairly easy to follow and figure out how to write them.

I ordered this book because I didn't want to have to be online when I am writing my poetry. Unfortunately Shadow Poetry hasn't turned their information into a book. Oh how I wish they would because the book I ordered, The New Book of Forms: A Handbook of Poetics, does what I realize now turned me off of poetry in the first place; they use old poetry with old words and language that isn't relevant for this time.

At least not for me.

I hadn't even realized before the moment I looked through that book that was the reason I love, LOVE, Shadow Poetry's website so much!

Now I am sure that some like the old world language, how they spoke and wrote poetry back then, (they may even think it is beautiful) but for some of us it just sounds like a bunch of gobbely gook that makes me, and probably some of you, shut the book!

It was last OctPoWriMo that I discovered this helpful resource (Shadow Poetry) and I have played with it a lot while writing my poetry over the last year. One of my favorites that I recently wrote is an Acrostic poetry form. I had great fun playing with this form and I added a challenge for my readers, Lipstick - Acrostic Poetry and a Prompt. Check it out and maybe you will try it yourself!

If you are like me and need samples with modern language, I highly recommend you check out Shadow Poetry's website and all of the deliciously wonderful types of poetry forms including their invented forms. It is a lot of fun for me to peruse through them and choose one to play with and I hope you have a lot of fun with it too!

~Morgan Dragonwillow


  1. You know what I love so much about word love play with you? How we manage to sync up without even knowing it. :~)

    I get peeved to hear how many educators have turned people off to poetry because of their rigidity about what poetry is, how it should sound, what the rules mean, etc on and on and on has everyone else fallen asleep yet?

    It is terrific you found your way back to poetry so so many others may fall deeply in love as well.

    1. I love when we sync up as well! This really wasn't about educators so much as resources out there for poets to use for creating their poetry. How one resource can totally turn them (me) off from writing poetry and another resource bring such inspiration and motivation to write it. It really is all about what works for the individual and seeing that poetry can be for everyone.

  2. This is one of my favorite sites! As a former math teacher, my left brain sometimes needs the "framework" that a form provides. Whether a Villanelle with its rather rigid structure or a looser Blitz poem, the descriptions and examples on Shadow Poetry are accessible for poets at any level.

    1. Exactly it doesn't matter where you are as a poet, their samples/examples and directions are for everyone. I'm glad you get so much out of them as well!