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Subject: "?uestion...or more a topic of discussion..." Previous topic | Next topic
the Light
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1332 posts
Thu Apr-07-05 03:46 PM

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"?uestion...or more a topic of discussion..."
Thu Apr-07-05 03:47 PM by the Light

  

          

The poet Anne Stevenson recently said something along the lines of, 'you can now be an artist without being able to draw, you can now be a poet without a knowledge of form or meter...'

To what extent do you agree? Do you think it's essential for us to master the techniques and rules of poetry writing to be 'authentic' poets? Will a lack of mastery in the traditional sense act as a glass ceiling to someone's aspirations/accomplishments?

Thoughts?

____________________________________________________

Loose Lips Sink Ships!
http://shattered-star.blogspot.com

"The words the happy say
Are paltry melody
But those the silent feel
Are beautiful" -Emily Dickinson

  

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Topic Outline
Subject Author Message Date ID
i shld answer this when
Apr 07th 2005
1
RE: i shld answer this when
Apr 08th 2005
5
RE: ?uestion...or more a topic of discussion...
Apr 08th 2005
2
what grade level do u teach?
Apr 08th 2005
3
RE: what grade level do u teach?
Apr 08th 2005
4
      dope
Apr 08th 2005
8
LMMFAO
Apr 08th 2005
12
this to me is like calling hip hop not music.
Apr 08th 2005
6
u dont think
Apr 08th 2005
7
      nope.
Apr 08th 2005
9
           sure you can know it/learn it/love it/hate it/whatever
Apr 08th 2005
10
           my work esp
Apr 08th 2005
11
           i agree w/ ur standpoint, form/structure/ and the like
Apr 08th 2005
15
           even not having a form
Apr 13th 2005
29
You have to have a foundation
Apr 08th 2005
13
I think there are two schools of thought here..
Apr 08th 2005
14
paperdoll is one of my fave poets ever to put pen to pad but...
Apr 09th 2005
16
ha!
Apr 09th 2005
19
As far as I can tell
Apr 09th 2005
17
this is why i admire this cat so much.
Apr 12th 2005
24
RE: As far as I can tell
Apr 12th 2005
26
it's impossible to express
Apr 13th 2005
27
Hmmm
Apr 09th 2005
18
*nods*
Apr 12th 2005
23
RE: ?uestion...or more a topic of discussion...
Apr 10th 2005
20
Basicly, on the surface, she is right.
Apr 10th 2005
21
RE: ?uestion...or more a topic of discussion...
Apr 12th 2005
22
i would think...
Apr 12th 2005
25
i think its important to be aware of what came before u
Apr 13th 2005
28
the proud minority still stands.
Apr 13th 2005
30
RE: the proud minority still stands.
Apr 13th 2005
31
      actively trying to break the rules
Apr 13th 2005
32
           Or maybe i'm just a little bit out of kilter?
Apr 13th 2005
33
the mastery is in the meaning
Apr 13th 2005
34

rgv
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Thu Apr-07-05 07:40 PM

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1. "i shld answer this when"
In response to Reply # 0


          

im feeling more like explanations, but yes, i think one needs to know, not necessarily master, the forms. As with any subject, mastery brings about excellence.

i just want chu to know
how i feel
how i feel

  

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Shakeet Lokh Em
Member since Mar 22nd 2005
3451 posts
Fri Apr-08-05 10:36 AM

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5. "RE: i shld answer this when"
In response to Reply # 1


  

          

I agree with rgv. About mastery bringing excellence. And I admit that I have in no way mastered the traditional way of poetry. I haven't even really studied the "craft" of it. So does that mean that I'm not a poet? Doesn't really matter to me. I just write. I love to write. So I may not write poetry in the truest since, but that doesn't sway me from trying to reach people through my words. If I'm not a "poet" or "artist", so what. I'm a writer. But what's in a name anyway? And it doesn't mean I won't try to learn the traditional forms and implement them in my future writing.

"I'm scientific, but my reflex gangsta"- Black Thought

  

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Blak_Sambo
Member since Feb 11th 2005
509 posts
Fri Apr-08-05 09:35 AM

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2. "RE: ?uestion...or more a topic of discussion..."
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

Now this is a tricky topic of discussion. I was once told that "art" is "Everything." But being that I am an English teacher, there is no way that I could teach poetry without pin-pointing the different literary structures that poems should have.

It's somewhat of a double-edged sword because you can't/shouldn't discredit anyone's feelings or artistic perception. However there should be guidelines to which one aheres to.

"Just because you pour syrup on shit...Doesn't mean it's pancakes."

  

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rgv
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Fri Apr-08-05 09:48 AM

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3. "what grade level do u teach?"
In response to Reply # 2


          

& for how long?

i just want chu to know
how i feel
how i feel

  

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Blak_Sambo
Member since Feb 11th 2005
509 posts
Fri Apr-08-05 09:55 AM

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4. "RE: what grade level do u teach?"
In response to Reply # 3


  

          

I teach now at a Charter school(K-4, Language Arts Specialist). But I am in graduate school for Secondary(High school) English.

  

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rgv
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Fri Apr-08-05 11:38 AM

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8. "dope"
In response to Reply # 4


          

i wanna teach h.s. english myself

i just want chu to know
how i feel
how i feel

  

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flashiusclay
Member since Mar 04th 2004
952 posts
Fri Apr-08-05 01:37 PM

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12. "LMMFAO"
In response to Reply # 2


  

          

Just because you pour syrup on shit...Doesn't mean it's
pancakes."


>>>LOL!!! I'm sure I've heard this before but aint that the truth.

Would you mind if I used this in a lyric? I would credit the source, a footnote if you will.

Proper Education Always Corrects Errors

  

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paperdollpoet
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Fri Apr-08-05 11:24 AM

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6. "this to me is like calling hip hop not music."
In response to Reply # 0
Fri Apr-08-05 11:24 AM by paperdollpoet

  

          

art evolves because people evolve.

the purpose of art, to me, is to express. not to show off how well you can master a technique.

keep in mind..."poetry" didn't fall from the sky and present it self to people..all these techniques and classical definitions were created by a person. by someone who defined themselves as artists..they didn't ask someone to define them as qualified to create. they just created..and someone else came along, picked it up and deemed as a style.

i say, keep creating and defining yourself. someone might come along and deem you as the new classic. if they don't..at least you got the words outta your head.

---
www.sheflypaper.com

  

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rgv
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Fri Apr-08-05 11:38 AM

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7. "u dont think"
In response to Reply # 6


          

writers need to know form?

i just want chu to know
how i feel
how i feel

  

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paperdollpoet
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Fri Apr-08-05 11:39 AM

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9. "nope."
In response to Reply # 7


  

          


---
www.sheflypaper.com

  

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paperdollpoet
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Fri Apr-08-05 11:42 AM

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10. "sure you can know it/learn it/love it/hate it/whatever"
In response to Reply # 9


  

          

but is your work deemed any less than 'art' because it doesn't take a set 'form'?

---
www.sheflypaper.com

  

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rgv
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Fri Apr-08-05 11:47 AM

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11. "my work esp"
In response to Reply # 10


          

takes no form....but, that doesnt mean i dont know it
or that i'm not familiar
w/ the couplet
or sestina
or sonnet
or novella
what have u

im not gonna argue that work isnt art unless it takes a particular form. but, i will argue that *i* think writers shld be familiar w/ form and various other literary techniques.


i just want chu to know
how i feel
how i feel

  

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the perfect mistake
Member since Dec 19th 2004
5090 posts
Fri Apr-08-05 05:17 PM

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15. "i agree w/ ur standpoint, form/structure/ and the like"
In response to Reply # 10


          

does not have to take place in order for a writer's work to be called poetry. a little knowledge of the artform should be in order, but i don't think it should be some mandatory element/quality....in order for it to be considered as such.


--------------
http://msmind.blogspot.com
http://www.sheflypaper.com/honeychile.html
http://www.myspace.com/treEmainE

I've been looking for you,
haven't you heard? ©Patrice Rushen

http://www.sheflypaper.com
http://www.thejawn.com

  

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UncleClimax
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Wed Apr-13-05 03:37 AM

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29. "even not having a form"
In response to Reply # 9


  

          

is a form.
remember that.

__________________
http://twitter.com/theloniousfunk
http://havetravelled.blogspot.com
http://instagram.com/arsonwelles

“Be uncomfortable; be sand, not oil, to the machinery of the world.”
- Gunter Eich

  

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flashiusclay
Member since Mar 04th 2004
952 posts
Fri Apr-08-05 01:54 PM

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13. "You have to have a foundation"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

To base your ideas on. I always say, you have to acknowledge who came before you. How many "rappers" do you know that listen to the shit that's out now, and they base their foundation on that, (with no knowledge of your Rakims and Melle Mels and Kanes and sadly even G Rap) and they're horrible amateur hacks. If you are ignorant of the standards in your craft, you will end up doing some shit that's already been done, years before and much better. I notice people who I know for a fact dont study hip hop, but they say they make "hip hop" it's like their idea of it is really weak, basically they do some weak ass shit and think it's tight. U gotta know your sport.

Proper Education Always Corrects Errors

  

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Soulbrotha
Member since Feb 18th 2004
7401 posts
Fri Apr-08-05 03:41 PM

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14. "I think there are two schools of thought here.."
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

School 1: Art is subjective to the individual and thus fluid..

School 2: Art has foundations that cannot be ignored..

I think I stand in the middle road of this.

I agree with rgv and paperdoll. Yes, one may not necessarily have to master everything about something in order to be very good at it. Some ppl just have God-given talent for something while others have to practice to be very good at it or achieve a certain level..still even those with talent must practice and have a wherewithal about what they're doing.

I support creativity and just doing what comes from one's heart but as far as poetry is concerned one must have a knowledge at least of the forms, styles etc. I started out not knowing zip but after taking a class in American and British Lit it opened my eyes to poetry like never before and exposed me to the classical greats and their styles from the harlem renaissance poets to the 19th century ones. Like someone said its like trying to get into hip hop and not knowing styles, cadences, flows, and other emcees gone before.

"Do to others what you would others have done unto you." - The Lord Jesus Christ

SB Video: http://www.youtube.com/soulbrothavideo
SB tweet:www.twitter.com/soulb

  

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Foneticcus
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Sat Apr-09-05 03:08 PM

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16. "paperdoll is one of my fave poets ever to put pen to pad but..."
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

i can see she's been hurt by some presumptuous people...

& there's already a massive french fry balancing upon her left shoulder.

if i'm not mistaken, the original post said nothing about poetry without form not being art, did it? it said "is it important to know form as an artist?"

to me, that doesn't pass a single judgment on any non-form stuff...

and it doesn't even speak to the work/product itself...

it's not akin to saying hiphop isn't music.

it's aksin to asking, "should someone going into hiphop production learn about the bomb squad, pete rock, dr dre, primo & rza?" knowing yr craft, honing yr talent...is that important? learning as much as you can about what you do...does that matter?

and to that, i'll say definitely. yes, yes AND yes.

and this is coming from someone who HATES writing in form.

but it took me attempting, and wrestling with it...to understand that yeah, like RGV said, excellence comes from mastery. i ain't tryna be an amateur forever. i could know everything there is to know and STILL write in freeform...that doesn't make my stuf not art. it just makes me informed. when you're informed, you can make choices. when you aren't just do what your limited skill set allows...

===========================

"Pimping ain't art...but grabbing guns is?!"
(c) Menphyel

"I've come to realise that I never loved Hip-Hop as a whole,
just a particular era that happened at the same time as
I was actively checking actively for new music."

  

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paperdollpoet
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19. "ha!"
In response to Reply # 16


  

          

perhaps me & my french free misread the "'authentic' poets" in the original post. i'm not that smart but i read it as in..do you believe that until you've mastered these key techniques you aren't considered a real poet?...

maybe this is why i reluctantly call myself a poet because i don't know nor do i care to learn the literary master techiniques that would qualify me as an 'authentic poet'.

ignorant art works well for me.
thank you basquiat.

but you're right. my own response went a little high-ho on the tell-it-like-it-is stance.

but believe me, i will continue to think art has nothing to do with formal training.


---
www.sheflypaper.com

  

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rubbersoulonice
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Sat Apr-09-05 03:21 PM

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17. "As far as I can tell"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

...the way people answer this question has a lot to do with what they think art is, and whether or not it has a function beyond the purely aesthetic.

I myself don't buy the "art is just expression" line of argumentation. As far as I can tell, that argument is primarily a tool to preclude discussion of serious thought about the dimensions of a work of art, primarily the ethical dimension (what should I do? how should I live?), which is the part of art that I'm most interested in now.

It would be rather foolish for me to advance a "Art is X" definition here. I will say that it seems fairly clear that, unless one is convinced by the fallacy that people are what's in their mind currently (the Beat fallacy, the Stream-of-Consciousness fallacy), that it becomes increasingly important to be able to think about what one is saying in one's poetry.

One of the best ways to learn how to think something is to learn how to say it. Form is not "mere" form - each form provides an orientation to use or to react against, and those rhetorical strategies are important to master. "Art is expression," and the free-form work that comes from it, also encompasses a stance toward language and content (a stance I wish I didn't use as much, because it isn't the stance I'd like to reflect), no less than the sonnet or epic, but without mastery or at least appreciation for structure free-form work loses that dimension for its creator, and the power of their own work escapes them.

Three cheers for craftsmanship. A good table and a good poem both take years of practice to create.

------------------------------
Something like Eldridge
Cleaver meets John Lennon

  

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Foneticcus
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Tue Apr-12-05 08:15 PM

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24. "this is why i admire this cat so much."
In response to Reply # 17


  

          


>I myself don't buy the "art is just expression" line of
>argumentation. As far as I can tell, that argument is
>primarily a tool to preclude discussion of serious thought
>about the dimensions of a work of art, primarily the ethical
>dimension (what should I do? how should I live?), which is
>the part of art that I'm most interested in now.

>Three cheers for craftsmanship. A good table and a good poem
>both take years of practice to create.

===========================

"Pimping ain't art...but grabbing guns is?!"
(c) Menphyel

"I've come to realise that I never loved Hip-Hop as a whole,
just a particular era that happened at the same time as
I was actively checking actively for new music."

  

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soulchild
Member since Dec 25th 2003
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Tue Apr-12-05 09:10 PM

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26. "RE: As far as I can tell"
In response to Reply # 17


  

          

i appreciate this response

  

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blaksilence
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Wed Apr-13-05 02:40 AM

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27. "it's impossible to express"
In response to Reply # 17


  

          

my own personal opinion any better than this...

so i won't try.

well said.

_____________________________________

The cry I bring down from the hills
__________belongs to a girl still burning
__________inside my head. At daybreak

____________________she burns like a piece of paper. - YK

  

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Winter Blaze
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Sat Apr-09-05 04:01 PM

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18. "Hmmm"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

I think no matter what genre a person creates in they must have some basic knowledge of the techniques used and how it was developed. A person should have a solid foundation in their craft to be able to fully explore it, expand on it, and or decide to go on a separate path.

Art is subjective and we cannot just casually dismiss someone's work b/c they did not produce something in a certain style or format. However, we cannot take someone seriously who has not taken the time to study their craft and know its roots and how things evolved within it.

Peace

Blaze

I'm moody, I'm cranky, I'm emotional-Dammit just leave me alone

Step into my lair and see what happens next

  

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mara
Member since Sep 21st 2002
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Tue Apr-12-05 07:01 PM

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23. "*nods*"
In response to Reply # 18


  

          

Basically

*I'm hella hella sexy*

  

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ToeJam
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Sun Apr-10-05 01:35 AM

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20. "RE: ?uestion...or more a topic of discussion..."
In response to Reply # 0


          

That shit is for the critics.

What do you think? You think they made the formula for a poem, and them went out and wrote the first one?

Or do you think what was natural emerged, and then we figured the logistics behind it...?

Form and meter are merely the science behind nature.

  

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Instant_Vintage
Member since Oct 19th 2004
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Sun Apr-10-05 11:25 AM

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21. "Basicly, on the surface, she is right."
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

if you take society as the main judge. Yes, there are zillions of folk out here taking jobs out of my pocket doing graphic design because they got a hold of photoshop and are undercutting the hell outta me, a man with a BFA. Not only that , but a prime example of what she said is this guy I attended the Art Institute of Atlanta with. He could not draw blood with a knife or a straight line with a ruler. However, once he got on the computer, dude could not be denied. His first job out of college, with an associates in Graphic Design, paid him 65k a year. So in the sense of what she said, she is right. HOWEVER, I believe that the true measure of an artist, is the ability to interweave thier creativity with the rules and functions of that forms past.

Poetry is an even tougher subject because right now it is trendy as hell. I think "poet" is a title earned not taken. It is never more evident than at open mic nite. Everybody gets up there and speaks a poem they wrote, only a few get up there and share a poem that they lived. You hear poetry, but you listen to a poet.


-------------------------------------
www.nappyafro.com | www.soulections.com

  

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Nowachaoticthing
Member since Dec 24th 2002
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Tue Apr-12-05 12:46 PM

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22. "RE: ?uestion...or more a topic of discussion..."
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

"To be a poet is a condition, not a profession."
- Robert Frost

That's all I have to add.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"When we're writing, I'm not sure that we think of the reader. It's more that we pray not to lie, to get it right, so that if we're writing about a tree, we get that tree and not a petrified log..."

  

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Morehouse
Member since Feb 25th 2003
7568 posts
Tue Apr-12-05 08:16 PM

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25. "i would think..."
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

one would want to know all about poetry if one truly loves the art...

but that's just my opinion.
i foresee a future in academia so i guess i embrace form as much as i denounce it, if that makes sense.


***********************************
"one, two, three, four, FIFTH!" -Dave Chappelle

"i pity the fool." -Mr. T

--

  

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UncleClimax
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Wed Apr-13-05 03:35 AM

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28. "i think its important to be aware of what came before u"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

not for inspiration or for the sake of patterning oneself after...but at the very least to make sure ur not copying anyone, or rehashing something thats been done to death already without knowing it. i mean, someone might think he's being very clever and original, but thats just due to ignorance, cuz in reality he's filling out a tried and tested formula with slightly different variables, dig?
i mean, once in a while a genius prodigy can come along and do something new without even knowing what was old...but thats why theyre geniuses, and only come every so often.
most of us cant come up with anything new, so what we have to do is study the old heads at least a little so that when we inevitably trod over charted and cultivated territory we can pay our respects and maybe after doing enough of that arrive at something that looks or smells kinda new...
but thats just me.

__________________
http://twitter.com/theloniousfunk
http://havetravelled.blogspot.com
http://instagram.com/arsonwelles

“Be uncomfortable; be sand, not oil, to the machinery of the world.”
- Gunter Eich

  

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paperdollpoet
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Wed Apr-13-05 10:00 AM

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30. "the proud minority still stands."
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

& not just for the devil's advocate sake.

our "argument" probably boils down to the fact that i believe everyone who is born is capable of being a poet. maybe its because i don't hold that title so prestigiously. maybe its the difference in my definition of poetry.

then again, please remember, who the hell am i? just another unauthentic poet sharing her views on what SHE believes is poetry. after all, how can you take my opinion seriously when i don't even consider this my craft?

tomato tamato, right?

some folks will feel your supreme mastery of the classical techniques.

and some folks will feel mine.

sometimes its just that simple.

---
www.sheflypaper.com

  

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The Hammer Man
Member since Apr 09th 2005
1858 posts
Wed Apr-13-05 10:10 AM

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31. "RE: the proud minority still stands."
In response to Reply # 30


          

..or could you say that you'd need to know the rules before you could start breaking them? How much would you say in the light of say the work of Noam Chomsky would a bit of knowledge about linguistics would be more useful that knowing some Burns or Elliot or somebody?

...guess what, you can't swing in scotland either.

  

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paperdollpoet
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Wed Apr-13-05 10:49 AM

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32. "actively trying to break the rules"
In response to Reply # 31


  

          

is not my interest.

i'm not a rebel for sake of being a rebel. read: thats tiring.

i'm set in my ways. read: comfortable.

& your second question..i didn't understand. read: hunh?


---
www.sheflypaper.com

  

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The Hammer Man
Member since Apr 09th 2005
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Wed Apr-13-05 10:57 AM

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33. "Or maybe i'm just a little bit out of kilter?"
In response to Reply # 32


          

..eh well i suppose what i mean is the society, technology and age that created the conditions for all the poetry of the great masters has changed, the position of religion has changed, economic and political structures have changed so perhaps the poetry has to change. Your language should not be constrained by an artistic formalism that was itself a reaction a change to conditions, if it's the case that your studying the old masters.

...guess what, you can't swing in scotland either.

  

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jayare214
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Wed Apr-13-05 06:40 PM

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34. "the mastery is in the meaning"
In response to Reply # 0


          

what ive found in all honesty in my own writing that IF knowledge of proper poetic and writing form is in my head, then I dont concsiously reference it when i write,rather I notice its signatures in the end product.

I feel the arts are best kept free of hard rules, as expression that employs recognizable tools is as valid as revolutionary work that breaks new ground. I guess the real question is, does new ground exist to be broken. If the answer is no, then modern poetry as referenced in your quote should be reexamined to note in hindsight, and even in filuted form, the structure and form of poetry technique.

-j

my music group:
http://www.facebook.com/beataroundabush
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http://www.reverbnation.com/beataroundabush
http://www.myspace.com/beataroundabush

My beats:
www.myspace.com/jayarejohnson

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/3/no

  

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