[PDF Notes] Get complete information on Deficiencies in Poetry

1. Instead of the rhythms subtly harmonizing with the thought pattern, the meter in these poems drowns all else out and the regular beat of the lines comes through without variation.

And now I see the end of all I sought

Oh why, Oh why should it have come to naught!

2. A poem should contain sentiment, true feeling, but when the poet pulls at our heart strings and brings forth sorrow or sympathy beyond that called for by the situation, the poem suffers – as does the reader.

Stay awhile and shed two dozen tears

For this poor thief o’ercome with fears

That any one of number of ills

Could rob him so quickly of his skills.

3. A poem should help to make the reader a better person through leading him to a more sensitive understanding of men and ideals. The moment the poet, however, delivers a lethal blow and that makes certain that the reader understands by drawing the obvious moral, the poet has killed the suggestiveness that must be part of a poem for it to be good.

Therefore dear reader now you know

A truth that has ever been so-

The hopes of those that practice sin

Must ever be found among the might have been.

4. The poet can convey much through the pictures he evokes in the minds of the reader. These images, however, must harmonise with the thought, the mood, the sentiment. Unless the poet is deliberately planning to evoke laughter, he can easily cause a reader to smile instead of feel sad by bringing the forth wrong type of imagery.

Like poor fish turning brown in the frying pan Jerry allowed the sun to turn his pallor to tan.

5. Instead of the lines singing as in great poetry or even following a too regular beat as in limericks or verse, too often the lines in poor poetry will lose all meter and sound like prose.

Therefore dear reader I know what I say

Allan fought much too hard on that Monday

6. Even in his use of words to be rhymed, the poet must be fully aware of the lift that his lines must give the reader’s spirit. If he uses too many obvious rhymes, the reader soon feels that the thought is just as obvious. He must learn to use very sparingly

Love – above moon – June day -say might – right

7. The essence of poetry is its economy of words. If the poet uses too many words to express an idea, if he repeats himself needlessly or if he adds words to fill out a line, he is not writing at the highest levels.

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