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Poetry May Not Be What You Think!

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Why Poetry? by Lisa Wells

Ours is a fast-moving, quick grab,

remote control, short-cut,

convince me on the run

way of life, so

I know

poetry

isn't the best word to use

if you want to

grab readers and

incite chills and thrills

to the masses.

Thoughts of aging poets sitting

on mountain tops

pondering over lines of prose

filled with effusive adjectives that make you

scratch your head

or maybe even want to scream

or just jump to the end.

Maybe you imagine beatniks

on stages or dreamers

behind desks

scribbling and typing

scribbling and typing

pouring their hearts out

from sleeve to paper

and all you can think

is why bother?

My answer is simple.

Poetry exists

the poet only extracts.

It's April, which means, Happy National Poetry Month! Despite what many may believe, poetry does NOT have to be boring and no, it is NOT always about love, trees, or misery either. A connection with the right poet is the first step and since today's poets are often exciting and occasionally humorous, the right poet is not a difficut find. Poetry has always been with us, from centuries old epic poetry to today's "poetry slams" being held all around the world, it's simply just another form of expressing yourself.

Most anyone can write poetry and there's no right or wrong to your words – free form poetry has seen to that. Sure, there are still plenty of poems that follow rules, poems that rhyme, and of course, poems filled with metaphor and peppered with plenty of those delightfully maddening head scratching moments, frankly I love them all, but as poetry can be such an up-hill battle for so many, the key is to find the form that is best for you. If Walt Whitman leaves you cold, don't give up poetry, try another poet!

If you're feeling adventurous, here are a couple of poems worth checking out. If you're not careful, one or two might just change your mind about poetry. Enjoy!

Taylor Mali's Typography

Forgetfulness by the incomparable Billy Collins

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This young woman's poetry was just introduced to me recently. This is Sarah Kay with her wonderful poem about hands.

And finally, I can't leave out one of my favorite Baxter Black poems, cowboy poet extraordinaire.

By the way, if Cowboy Poetry is for you, the Entiat Library in conjunction with the Columbia Breaks Fire Interpretive Center will be celebrating Cowboy Poetry and Western Music on April 23 at 2pm with Cowboy Poet Fred Duzan and Singer /Songwriter Chelsey Craven! Contact either organization for more information.