Welcome to Jingle Poetry!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

POETRY POTLUCK - Peace, Relaxation and Spirituality...

A HUGE HI to all you wonderful people!! 

We (Amanda and Kavita) are so happy to welcome you once again this week to Poetry Potluck... Without saying much, let's just sink into some Peace, Relaxation and Spirituality this week... Aaahhh.. sounds blissful.. doesn't it?

Register yourself (with your name and the link to your potluck entry) using InLinkz below, and leave a comment with a pointer to your post! It would be great if you could link back to us on your blog!!! Once you are done with this, visit other participants (at least 6), read their entries, comment, AND ENJOY!!! Of course, you can always submit any poem of your choice as well...

Remember: Every week, InLinkz will be up on Sunday, at 8pm (CST), and will stay open till Wednesday, 8pm (CST). So you will have 72 hours to share your poem with us...COOL huh?!! Also, if you aren't new to Poetry Potluck, please note that we may not send you weekly reminders. So, it would be awesome if you could add us to your Blogroll or Favorites, so that you can stay updated with the happenings on our site!! :))

Flash Forward!! Now that we have a clear and stress free mind, how about giving a thought to our Aims, Goals and Ambitions? You will have one entire week to prepare your poem for this theme.. :) And if you are unable to submit a poem ON the theme, relax... Send in an older poem you would love to share with us...

And now, LET'S GET STARTED with this week's potluck!!!! Enjoy the VIDEO here and write on... Thanks for joining in and supporting your fellow poets here at OUR favorite Poetry Potluck!!!


alone in the shadows
of eternal stillness
on my journey of life
in fragile dreams
stretched out forever
in the light of angels
as they gently whisper
I search for answers
beneath and beyond
Utopia of peace
a moment in time
as I spread my wings
and begin to fly

By yours very truly, Amanda... :-)


Sunday Rally Dispatch is a collection of news updates of interest to our poet-blogger community members.  Your contributions from your area of the world, your activities, or your interests are welcome. Please forward them to Jamie Dedes of Musing by Moonlight at jamiededes@rocketmail.com. Contributions are subject to editorial discretion and space constraints. Feedback welcome.

ON THIS DAY:  In 1889 the Hindi poet, Jaishankar Prasad, was born in Varanisi, India. He died January14, 1937. Prasad was born into an elite madheshiya vaisya family in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India. His father Babu Devki Prasad, also known as Sunghani Sahu was a tobacco dealer. After, he lost his father at an early age, he had to encounter some family problems at a relatively young age, and left school after class eight. However, he remained interested in literature, languages, and ancient history, and continued studying at home; thereafter he developed a special inclination towards the Vedas and these interests are innately reflected in the deep philosophical content of his works. He was also interested in study of ancient relics.
Apart from being a poet, he was also a philosopher, historian and a sculptor. In later years he made himself aloof from worldly matters, and adapted a nearly ascetic life. Though, some of his interests such as chess, gardening, shashtrarth and poetry recitation remained with him. MORE [Wikipedia] Thanks to Someone Is Special (SIS), we have translations of a few of his poems. We're getting one from Shashi too.  Translations just cannot be found, so we had to rely on our own resources. Teamwork at its best! So here from SIS is one. Next week I will post some more. Thanks, SIS!


The sources are sweet sweet Lahiri 
Are not violence, are sixth Chherie 
Delightful waterfall. 

Where Giri difficult to Avidarith
Some thing are hidden deep
The sources are sweet sweet Lahiri

Unthinkable event period
Heart suddenly began to cram
Seeing the waterfall.

The first rain filling 
Shell to recall the cut 
Unthinkable event period 

To inundate the whole mind body 
Then one day Apang Section 
Heart of the waterfall -  

Went flowing like Drna Rrgajal. 
Love Venya did Pasara 
To inundate the whole mind body 

Pure reflection of love in
Green Vitpe desire to Zoँe
Run flowing waterfall. 

Tapmay life to cold 
Truth in your Shuharai 
In pure reflection of love

BEAUTIFUL BUTTERCUP600: Our dear awesome Aussie mate, Amanda  - poet, artist, and JP official - is retiring from Jingle Poetry "officialdom" to pursue other activities. Amanda, along with collaborator, Kavita Rao, has graciously and creatively coordinated weekly JP Potluck activity much to the delight of all. Happily, she remains with us for another two weeks. We shall miss Amanda and wish her the very, very best. We’ll continue to enjoy Amanda's dramatic art-work and fine poetry at buttercup600. Please visit Amada to express your appreciation and wish her well. 

SHALOM...HAPPINESS: Aleza Freeman, whose name in Hebrew means happiness, is joining the JP team and will cover Amanda’s Potluck spot. “In 5th grade, Aleza Goldsmith Freeman was editor of her elementary school newspaper, the Tomiyasu Wallstreet Dragon. But it was in second grade that she discovered her passion for writing. She penned a poem about the many practical uses for a unicorn’s horn and has been hooked on writing ever since.” MORE [alezafreeman.com, her website

Aleza has worked as a reporter, editor, and page designer for a variety of publications. Look forward to an indepth interview with Aleza in next Sunday's Dispatch. Meanwhile, here’s a writing sample, a haiku, one that we think shows she’s got a sense of humor. We like that. (poetry copyright: alezafreeman, 2011 all rights reserved)
Zombified, they feast

on my tasty brain, insane

3 hours till morning
Check out Aleza’s blog HERE. Stop by and say "welcome." And since we have so many cat-lovers in our community, you'll be happy to know Aleza lives in Nevada with three furry felines. 

ANOTHER NEWBIE: Paula Tohline Calhoun, Reflections From a Cloudy Mirror, will be joining us tonight for Poetry Potluck for the first time.  Of note: she just won a flash fiction contest for her story-poem, A Tale of Two Video-Gamers. Read more about Paula and the award HERE. Congratulations and welcome, Paula!

HOT ON HAIKU: SomeoneIsSpecial (SIS) is hosting The Haiku Challenge, which runs from February 1 to February 28. Though SIS is an experienced host, this is his first haiku challenge. The last challenge he did was romance, and he had a huge and happy response. Please support SIS in this effort as you did before. In the end, it’s just fun for all.

SIS’ love of romance continues as you can see from this quote: “As February being the month of love, I decided myself to express my love for Haiku, after penning down more than half a century of Haiku, the love for it has become immeasurable ….What is a Haiku? Haiku, is a form of Japanese poetry, three-lined non-rhyming poem consisting of seventeen syllables, in three phrases 5-7-5 syllable respectively. This is one of the Haiku loved by many… (poetry copyright, SIS 2011 all rights reserved)
Mom clasped me, wished
Good luck for final exams
Secret of success

I hope many enjoyed as much as I did when I penned this… This is a sample for the ones who going to try their hand at Haiku for the first time.” HERE

TRIBUTES OF SONIA, The Second Fall: RiikaInfinity is pleased to announce another in the series of Tributes of Sonia. The book will be on sale effective February 13, 2011 on Lulu and Scribed. More details HERE.

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Courtesy of http://publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=2022&picture=cheers

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Please email news announcements to Jamie Dedes at jamiededes@rocketmail.com.

Please forward photograph or illustrations and include all necessary links. 
Thank you!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Poem of the Week--Saturday, January 29

I feel honored to be a part of Jingle’s Poetry Community and to be hosting this week’s Poem of the Week.
It was amazing and a bit overwhelming to be submerged in so much splendid poetry—I truly enjoyed reading every entry. For this week’s featured poem dealing with Rules, Regulations and Laws, I chose Jamie Dedes’ poem, Of a Certain Age.

The poem celebrates the freedom that comes with aging, when you're able to feel at home with who you are as a person. Ignoring some of the ought-to’s and should-have’s imposed by society allows us to enter into the celebration of each moment.

Stylistically, Jamie’s poem excels. Note the crisp details and the choice of active verbs that draw us into the experience of nonconformity. She has taken a theme that could feel oppressive and injected it with a bit of mirth and irony.

As you join Jamie traipsing your neighborhood streets or nibbling on an apple, enjoy being who you are called to be. Don’t forget to pay her a visit at http://musingbymoonlight.com/

Of a Certain Age

What’s it to me? …

A gnarled, nasty old poet of introverted time

wearing five-dollar sweats, dressing in black on black like a fly

with silver earrings tinkling softly in the winter breeze

What’s it to me? …

A Madwoman, a Madonna, a Medusa

Traipsing neighborhood streets, city parks and country lanes

Nibbling on sharp yellow cheese and glossy red apples

Sitting down on some wayward curb to sigh in wonder at

noisy birds and children, wizened old men, whiskered grandmothers

And dogs walking their humans by the side of the road

Feral cats scratching out a living of pigeons stuffed with stale bread

Muttering, muttering, whispering, watching, writing

Writing long poems and short about what it was to be us

through clocked days trapped in pointless, punctilious youth

Enjoying now the wild, gnarled randomness of life

and the music of our silvery old souls tinkling in the breeze…

What’s it to me? What’s it to this so lately untameable me?

May your muses work overtime this week. We'll see you next Saturday. Don't forget to join Monday's Poetry Potluck!
Victoria Ceretto-Slotto (http://liv2write2day.wordpress.com/)
Bill Cook (http://beginningpoetry.wordpress.com/)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wednesday's Meet the Poet

Wednesday's Meet the Poet

Tell us a little about yourself.

I am a lover of darkness and black. I came from the dark side and I have an obsession of butterflies and laces. I do not consider myself as a writer but a creator of my own world. I am not born from a English speaking family and neither my main language is English. I can pretty much say I almost failed my English during high school but that doesn't stop me from writing. English may not be the best subject I can score but it is definitely a language that I can used to write fantasy with.

I am an artist & designer but in many different ways, I love painting and exploration, image manipulation by combining things together and form a story behind it. I occasionally design logos, banners and websites for friends as well. Usually I have no particular focus of the design phase that I want and just do whatever I have in mind, because that is where all the inspirations come from, don't they?

I am a gamer and a programmer for games. I am currently doing my internship on creating an education game for the school. I am studying Diploma in Information Technology and this is actually my final year, I will be graduating in April if everything goes well. I love games and now I am creating them, and I realized that it isn't easy at all. And it is when I know that, great games doesn't come in just few months of development and design, but years of efforts and concept placed in there. That's how a game interest gamers and let them stay for a very long time. =D~

Please tell us about your blog and what it means to you? How did you come up with the name?

I did not thought of butterflies as a theme in the beginning but then I thought of it as something different. To me, butterfly is a sacred insect that sort of have something related to life. Deadly Butterfly Betrayal is a symbol of loyal to friends and loved ones, it is like more of telling people about my personality and thoughts. Anything inside the blog is all about the truth I seen and things that I wanted to share with everyone. It is not just poetry, but many things. Though I did not really focus much of personal stuffs obviously, but then you should often see emotions and feelings spurring out from a few poetry work that sort of highlight my life.

Visit Deadly Butterfly Betrayal to check out more of my works :D

Can you remember writing your first poem?
Yes, It had been posted in my website as well, a memory when I am flying back to Singapore when I was young. Here you go:

Song of Heaven

Heaven lights a path of hope
for those who truly see it
may they be blessed
and a journey shall begin
Throw away differences
and may understanding
stands and shall
peace and harmony
be attained in the path of light
Fear no pain
conquer yourself
and move on
The future is in your hands
Listen to your heart
and may its voice
reach your mind and soul
and you shall see the truth
A journey of life and death
may the living and
the death hear it
for God have mercy on his final judgment…

Is there a style of writing you prefer?
I adapted a different writing style and I don't really like following formats or styles, though I enjoy the fact that whenever I see people working on a specific style, that really interests me a lot. My poetries are mostly story poems or character development poems. It can be a story by itself or a story about a character, written in a poem form, highlighting the beginning, the middle and the ending. It is much like a summary yet it is significant and interesting to read. I also do shape and color poems. I love shaping and coloring the letters of the poem to have something related to the poetry I had written.

Do you write more than just poetry?
Yes, I also writes a semi-graphical novel series, Tributes of Sonia. The series is set to have a game within game system and a game environment which readers can actually "play" while reading the e-book. I had developed this new concept into a novel because I am a gamer. Everything in this series had been combined to be of my hobby and passion. To know more about it, you can check out this link. The first book had already been published on September, 2010 and it is free to download.

The second book will be releasing on 13th February, 2011 which is very near. It will be available for purchase at Lulu and Scribd as an E-Book at the price of 9.99 USD for the first two weeks of purchase, after which it will go back to the original price of 13.99USD. If you haven't check it out and is interested to do so, you can download the first book for free over at my website^_^, links are provided over here.

What is the favorite poem you have written so far?
This had been written not long ago and I love it! Because it has a heart in it =D~


that letting go
isn’t easy for anyone
that moving on
isn’t hard for anyone
who know how to let go finally
Let the past be the past
Let the present stay as what
it should be and never changing
Time is endless if you believe in it
The future will come when it is time
Knowing all this will make you a
happiest person that you will
ever know about yourself
It had always been with
you yet you may not
see it because you
are still in the
ocean of
Endlessly searching
for an answer
Questioning doubts that never be heard
It is time to move on and embrace the precious
I never had been happier knowing everything had
been all along with me and for now I will treasure as time goes by

When do you write the most?
During the night, it is much more peaceful. I cannot seemed to think of anything when I am at work or in school. Inspirations only come when I am at home and right in front of my own laptop. It is my center of operation when all the inspirations, creations and everything nice comes in. ^_^~

Do you have a favorite poet or a favorite poem?
I don't have any particular favorite poet but I do have a favorite poem written by someone I came across at this website called www.darkpoetry.com. The poem is titled "Reality" by kayoticfear.

by kayoticfear

It's like this place was made for me
Built on pain and misery.
Broken by a world that's caused nothing but pain
A world so evil, a world so strange.
A world full of shit, a world made of lies
Where the weak and the poor
Can do nothing but cry
Where the good die young, and the bad grow old.
Where the tears in your eyes, freeze from the cold

Where there's nothing but sadness, and even more grief
Where death and despair, is the prize we all reap.
Where the words mean nothing and promises die

That is reality, Everything else is a lie
This is true life my friend, and i have just opened your eyes.

Now you and I are exactly the same, we see past the fake cloudy sky
In knowledge lies pain, and in virtue lies crime.

You now know the ways of the world
So make sure you follow the rules
Or else youll end up like the others
Hopeless, pitiful fools

So fuck the poor
Decimate the meek
Kill your fellow man
and Destroy the weak.

That is the motto humanity speaks
As we all sow
So shall we all reap

For not even our souls...
In the end shall we keep.

Do you enjoy reading books? What are the best books you have ever read?
I used to enjoy reading book until I started to get influence into the gaming world. Whenever I am presented a real book, you can pretty catch me asleep the next moment, although E-Books are fine with me. I love detective and mystery solving books, there is one series I especially loving until now. (I still playing the games part, though it seems a little childish to some people) It is the Nancy Drew Crime Solving Novel written by Carolyn Keene. i will always borrow two to three books weekly and finish them midweek before borrowing when I was around 7 years old. Now I am a lover of the games of Nancy Drew instead of the book. ^.^~

What poets in the blog-sphere do you like to read or visit most?
I am a very random person who can go around and pop out sometimes at anywhere and anytime. When I am free, I will hop around the net and check out poets from various community. I prefer to read different poetry styles yet relating to a subject or topic that sparks my interest. It is hopping here and there, exploring various style and enjoying the flow of the poetries.

What are your inspirations? Where do you feel most comfortable to write?
It can come from almost everything. Dramas, animes, movies, dreams, game and many many more. I can even sit inside the washroom and come out with an idea after a few minutes. I can be sleeping and suddenly jump up with an idea and went down again. The only place where all my poetries and novels can be written with peace, it will be my home and in front of my laptop. I don't see inspiration coming my way when I use other laptops or system, it just have to be mine, I guess and I know it is kind of weird to, but I cannot figure out why. =X

You have been a part of Jingle Poetry Potluck. What are the benefits of participating in it? Are you a member of any other poetry communities?
I get to know more poets and their wonderful and amazing works. I might not be commenting for everyone but I definitely did check out on the previous potluck that had been entered by poets to check out what I had missed. I am the tech support of Jingle Poetry and I am honored to be one because I can play around with the design and handle the things behind the scenes rather than on the stage. I always love doing things and supporting people from behind, guess that is where my introvert personality came from. :P

What advice would you give someone who is interested in starting a poetry blog?
Decide on a theme for your blog but it doesn't have to be something related to poetry. Go with what you think it suits you and comfortable with it. And then when you start to blog, surely you will find something to link both your poetry style and theme together, just like how I did, my blog can be of design, art or poetry. If you love a particular style, stick with it but never give up on others as well, there is so much more to see. Get to know and inspired by other poets too! They are one of the sources of ideas and inspirations, and get your mind cracking, you will create a world that you will believe and live in, in your little poetry blogging world. Cheers!

Thank for the featuring and interview by Jingle Poetry, I am honored once again and thank you everyone that is supporting Jingle Poetry. It been great and wonderful moment to be able to have everyone gather together and share your wonderful poetries! Have a great year ahead and all the best with whatever you are doing! :D

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Review Tuesdays - Caged or Free?

What is freedom? Is just being able to do what we want define freedom? No. Even that is very suffocating at times, and we are caged by it. Such thoughts, free yet caged, bring out the best in us at times. And so it does for a blogger named Tweety, whose blog I’m reviewing today. The blog, which has had a name change recently, is called Caged by Freedom.

Who is this yellow bird?

Tweety is an infant learning to speak, an adolescent trying to come over her latest crush, an adult trying to bring balance in her life. A simple middle class girl who carries her heart on her sleeves… someone who accepts her imperfections, doesn’t crave or want an extraordinary life but a life that has calm, peace and love… and a talented poet.

What does her cage look like?

Tweety uses a custom template, 4 columns in all. The post background is red and white fonts. The overall look is quite appealing and the blog has an array of different widgets like archive, visitor feed, blogroll and label list. The blog has 95 followers and 19 followers on Networked Blogs. She has been actively blogging since January 2009 and has 216 posts to date. The pages on her blog are for blogger awards and a space where she tells about herself. She uses DISQUS feature to provide Wordpress like comments on Blogspot which makes it easy to comment.

The song of the caged Tweety:

Tweety’s poetry is simple and captivating. Most of her verses are free in form and thought, and easy to read and understand. Her enthusiasm to write is evident from her writing, which comes on a regular interval unless impeded by personal work like exams. Even during them, I’ve found her to be quite attracted to blogging, and poetry in general.

Her favorite form of poetry I think is the acrostic form, and she writes quite often for the Acrostic Only meme. To keep the flow in thought and theme, and trying to follow the rules at AO is no easy task but she doesn’t give up and rises to the challenge. Other than acrostics, she likes to do the haiku form as well. She’s an eager student, always interested in learning new forms and willing to work on her mistakes. Other than poetry, she also dabs in fiction, and her acrostic short story on New Dawn has also won her a best short story badge.

From her recent posts, I recommend the free form poem Dear Brother as a read. It tells the story of a girl who is going abroad and away from her parents and beloved brother. From her older posts, The Secret of Eyes, the story of a young girl, cheated into prostitution by one her family, is another I’d recommend. Tweety also likes to write etheree form, and poetry in Hindi as well.

She writes for a lot of meme blogs like Acrostic Only, Haiku Heights, One Single Impression etc, and has also recently started to write for Thursday Poetry Rally and Poetry Potluck as well.


I’d ask you to keep going the way you are. Reading your poetry is very enjoyable. Try a different template sometime, one with a wider post area and lesser columns… simple ones are quite good. Regarding widgets, I think you have what is needed to make your readers navigate easily.

Who am I?
I’m Leo; author of I Rhyme Without Reason, co-host of Review Tuesdays here at Jingle Poetry along with Someone is Special. Hope you enjoy reading about the blogs, and do go read them too. Tweety, I have wanted to review your blog for a while now, and I'm glad to have got the chance today. Continue to write, read and improve on your talent... 

To JP Tuesday Reviews readers, sorry for the delay today. It wasn't intentional.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

POETRY POTLUCK - Rules, Regulations and Laws...

Hi everyone!! Hope you all had/are having a great weekend! 

We (Amanda and Kavita) are as pleased as ever to welcome you (newbies and followers alike :)) to Poetry Potluck... This week, it's all about  Rules, Regulations and Laws!!!!! Ouch...they really hurt, don't they?! :)

Register yourself (with your name and the link to your potluck entry) using InLinkz below, and leave a comment with a pointer to your post! It would be great if you could link back to us on your blog!!! Once you are done with this, visit other participants (at least 6), read their entries, comment, AND ENJOY!!! Of course, you can always submit any poem of your choice as well...

Remember: Every week, InLinkz will be up on Sunday, at 8pm (CST), and will stay open till Wednesday, 8pm (CST). So you will have 72 hours to share your poem with us...COOL huh?!! Also, if you aren't new to Poetry Potluck, please note that we may not send you weekly reminders. So, it would be awesome if you could add us to your Blogroll or Favorites, so that you can stay updated with the happenings on our site!! :))

Flash Forward!! After all those strict Do's and Don'ts on all kinds of matters, we think it would be a great idea to enjoy and bask in some Peace, Relaxation and Spirituality... You will have one entire week to prepare your poem for this theme.. :) And if you are unable to submit a poem ON the theme, relax... Send in an older poem you would love to share with us...

And now, LET'S GET STARTED with this week's potluck!!!! Enjoy the VIDEO here and write on... Thanks for joining in and supporting your fellow poets here at OUR favorite Poetry Potluck!!!

"Solitary Law Keeper"

Lonely he stands,
be it sun or rains,
he can not give up
no matter what it takes.

Blaring horns around
angry drivers in hurry
ever busy people on foot
these are his worries.

Then there are those
who flaunt arrogance
by breaking rules,
in name of ignorance.

Can you blame him then,
to take things by law book
if he wasn't careful
how messy would roads look ?

Treat him just human
keeping regulation isn't easy
give him a word of praise
for keeping the traffic moving.

Pass him a genuine smile
if he gets angry at you
only he ensures your safety
being the traffic police.

By our lovely Nimue...
Thanks a bunch, dear friend... We are honored to have you write for us...


Sunday Rally Dispatch is a collection of news updates of interest to our poet-blogger community members.  Your contributions from your area of the world, your activities, or your interests are welcome. Please forward them to Jamie Dedes of Musing by Moonlight at jamiededes@rocketmail.com. Contributions are subject to editorial discretion and space constraints. Feedback welcome.

Los Angeles Review Issue No. 9 - Spring 2011INVITING SUBMISSIONS: The Los Angeles Review, established in 2003, is the voice of Los Angeles and the voice of the nation. With its multitude of cultures, Los Angeles roils at the center of the cauldron of divergent literature emerging from the West Coast of California U.S.A. Perhaps from this place something can emerge that speaks to the writer or singer or dancer or wild person in all of us, something disturbing, something alive, something of the possibility of what it could be to be human in the 21st century. We invite both published and emerging writers to submit their work.

WRITER’S DIGEST: Poetic Asides with Robert Lee Brewer offers updates on contests and competitions and other information of interest to poets. Thanks to Victoria Ceretto-Slotto for this link.

INVITING INTERNATIONAL MEMBERSHIP: Second Light Network. The aim of the network is to promote women poets and to help them develop their work. It puts on a weekend of readings and workshops in London twice a year, a residential workshop/gathering in Worcestershire in the middle of England once year and occasional events elsewhere in the UK - this year, a workshop and reading in Bath. It has occasionally received funding from the English Arts Council.

The Network has a particular interest in helping women of forty-years and over but membership is open to all women poets. The organization is keen to have members from all over the world. There is an application form on the website which can be downloaded and applicants can pay online. Paypal will ask for payment in the currency of the country from which the applicant is applying. [Any problems with joining - please contact Anne Stewart, the administrator and web manager, by clicking on her name in the About Second Light section.]

The major poetry magazine for all women poets, ARTEMISpoetry, is produced by Second Light. Its main is editor is Dilys Wood, founder and organiser of the Network. The magazine includes poems, a comprehensive review section, serious articles, and interviews with major women poets and women playing an important part in the poetry world as publishers or editors.  Members of Second Light receive copies of the journal, which comes out twice a year.  Information on submitting poetry is detailed on the website.

THE WONDERS OF THE INTERNET FOR POETS: For sure, we can have our cake and eat it too. We are offered Smörgåsbord  of activities with which to involve our poetic muses. These provide support, encouragement, motivation, camaraderie, and critique … or some mix of the above. I’ve noted in reading our many blogs, that our community tend to be active in multiple activities and memes. By way of intro to an activity that might be new to you, today we bring you Luke Prater’s overview of his Facial Expression Poetry Circle (Facebook) – a learning exchange - for those interested in and comfortable with critical analysis of their poems. It is followed by Luke’s opinion piece, The Natural Laws of Poetry.

The Importance of Constructive Criticism and an Environment for It  by Luke Prater

In April 2010 I started a Facebook Group discussion-board platform, specifically so poets could post their work and read the work of others with an emphasis on giving and receiving constructive criticism, which might be less appropriate in other venues. Often we are afraid to offer honest feedback to our peers because we don’t want to cause offence or because we feel when positive feedback is given the poet is pleased and a warm response will be reciprocated. This is fine, but how does that help me learn?

How will I see that I have a tendency to, for instance, end my free-verse pieces on a single line in an effort to come full-circle and ‘wrap things up’ (I see this again and again and indeed do it myself sometimes), when it is redundant because I have said all that, and more, in the body of the poem? Constructive critique  - tactfully delivered - is the best gift a peer can give. Our poet friends may do us a disservice when they don’t point out issues like clichéd phrasing or lack of visual device such as metaphor (so the Narrative Voice 'tells' rather than 'shows', rendering the piece prosaic and lacking in power of expression. Please, tell me if my poem if flawed in some area. How else will I learn? Even professional level poets need honest feedback, or at least, others to bounce ideas off against. As authors we have been so close to the work that we are blind to its shortcomings. On Facial Expression Poetry Circle we have built a strong Group with several admins. We learn very fast in this fun, collaborative environment.

I have purposefully kept Facial Expression Poetry Circle small and intimate, though we take anyone who asks to join. Novice poets take the crit, work hard, and become decent poets quickly, or stop posting – simply because they aren’t yet able to handle critique. One has to be in a place where not too much of the ego is invested in the poem and the poet is open to learning. I love blogging. My blog showcases my polished pieces, but the Group is where I learn to write poetry. New members, as I said, are welcome. Are you ready to take the crit? Great. Let’s do it.

The Natural Laws of Poetry by Luke Prater

Poetry, like most other areas, has two sets of laws: one arbitrary, made up by someone once, or developed by a group over time. These laws have a lot to do with what's in fashion during a particular epoch. They can and do get broken constantly. The other set of laws are natural laws, like the laws of physics, which simply cannot be broken. Or at least, if they can, it has to be done in quite some style, and takes a very special kind of exponent in the field. A genius, probably. Novice poets who don't understand those rules may look like… well, novice poets. That's the very reason, in fact, they look like novice poets, and why when the majority of readers see their poetry, it doesn't interest them very much. 

The sonnet, for instance, is an arbitrary, made-up form, but its meter, iambic pentameter, isn't so arbitrary. The reason it was adopted and became so common is because a) it's lilting unstress-stress cadence is the closest to how the majority of us actually speak; and b) by using that meter (if you've decided to go with metered lines), makes absolutely sure that the line will flow smoothly, and that there will be no doubt whatsoever as to how many stresses/beats the line has, rhythmically.

Because we are all human beings with ears/eyes/a brain, the transmission of spoken/written language from page/mouth to brain has to observe physical laws. So it is, in fact, partially in the realm of physics. And neuroscience too. That's why there are natural laws to the craft of poetry that aren't 'made up' and easily disposable. The 'Art' of poetry is another matter, since Art is in the realm of aesthetics, like beauty, and almost entirely given to personal opinion or taste. Beauty, as the saying goes, "is in the eye of the beholder". 

 January 23rd, deadpoet88
January 26th, Teenage Poet

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