Poetry of the Past
When you think of poetry of the past, what comes to mind? Do you see artists in long robes scratching at verses on parchment with quill and ink? Are they motivated to please benefactors by composing ballads and epic tales? Perhaps you imagine a more contemporary scene, evolved to the use of tools like typewriter or ball point pen? The creators of this newer time may use their words to produce a catchy advertising jingle. Or maybe in very recent days at the corner coffee shop, you witnessed someone tapping away at their laptop with intensity, working to finish a love poem for their sweetheart’s birthday before they hit ‘send’?
Despite gallons of ink, reams of paper or torrents of keypads tapped in pursuit of artistic release, we wonder how many of them considered themselves poets. Was it a label to which they aspired? Did happenstance and lucky chance meld with natural ability and arduous study – to create the many masterful poems we enjoy today?
In modern times, every student exposed to a creative writing class likely has opportunity to practice several standard poem forms as well as read poets considered ‘classic’ or ‘great’. Some find it tortuous and some find it invigorating. All come away with a distinct idea of whether poetry is worth their time and trouble.
Poetry in My Past
As a teen I wrote rhyme into song lyrics, accompanied by even simpler chord combinations. I sang my heart out to Bozo, my sweet Collie, imagining myself the next Loretta Lynn. I felt headed toward that goal while in college, when invited to compete in a country music competition hosted by a local radio station in Salina, KS.
Alas, my skills were rudimentary then and garnered no prize. That effort required lyricist skills, and a certain affability with words, yet still formed no explicit remembrance as poetry in my mind. It would be decades later, after several shifts of focus, that rhymed treasure hunts and most recently poetry, found a personal connection to this RhymeLovingWriter.
Poetry in My Present
After homeschooling our youngest son for twelve years, the day came when he went off to college. He was doing his thing and I was freer to pursue doing mine. A class through the local community college offered opportunity to learn about promoting writing on the internet.
After hearing of my fondness for rhyme the instructor, Linda Aksomitas, helped me define a niche on which to focus. She suggested two avenues to gain experience: children’s books or poetry. The first sounded intriguing, the second seemed unlikely. However, through research I found a wonderful site, Rhymezone.com, that just happened to be hosting a poetry contest – closing three days after I found them.
With my vast practice of a few days I took the plunge (now a bit bemused at my entry). Then a most welcome surprise arrived. I found the forum on that site. It contained a welcoming community of fellow writers and poets. These folks continue to encourage and challenge me, even until today, to learn and build poetic discipline. The learning curve swells my enthusiasm while the atmosphere remains consistently sweet.
You may be interested too, or curious to try your hand. I encourage you to visit the forum at Rhymezone.com, or one of many other poetry and writing groups available online.
You can find a list of my poetry by clicking here. New content will be added regularly.