welcome to yet another edition of v!be.

issue# 10

I was really amazed at some of my friends' reactions when I asked them if they would like to contribute poetry dedicated to their lovers. All of them have a good grip over the English language and are quite creative too, but the very word "poetry" seemed to strike a deep fear into their hearts. Of course I won't dispute that poetry is a difficult subject - with such grave things as forms,metre,rhyme schemes and what not- but, we are not actually trying to become a Keats or Shelley here, just trying to organize our thoughts into a form that's appealing to the ears and the eyes.

So here are some quick tips to get a poem written. Try them out and if you like the result, please do send it to us.

Rhythm not Rhyme:
That's the first thing to take care of. Most people fall into the trap of writing a series of sentences, all ending in rhyming words which strip the poem of its meaning. In fact, people concentrate so hard on finding that rhyming word that they forget the subject of the poem. So, to save yourself from falling into the trap, I would advise you to forget about rhyming. Rhythm, however, is very important and that can mostly be taken care of by punctuation and line breaks - basically see that your sentences have a uniformity and are not awkwardly long or short.

The Refrain:
This is the oldest trick in the book to make your poems come alive. A refrain is a regularly recurring phrase or verse especially at the end of each stanza or division of your poem. Generally if you have struck upon a theme for your poem, you can easily construct a phrase based on it, use it as a refrain, and construct your whole poem around it.

For example, if you want to write about how you still remember your childhood sweetheart you might create a line like "but i still remember those days we shared" as a refrain and use it like:
`i have loved and lost and loved again
been around the world and back
but i still remember those days we shared...

i have had my share of joy and sorrow
but i still remember those days we shared...`

Inversion and line breaks:
Once you have written down the base of the poem it's time to recite it in your mind and try rearranging the words and sentences. One thing that comes in handy at such a time is sentence inversion. Change something like "my heart desires to see you once more" into "to see you once more, how my heart desires".

Another useful method is to insert line breaks at places in a sentence where it may not be logical but "sounds" good. For example instead of something like

"the sound of wind in the elm trees or the chirp of birds flying home for the night." split it into:

"the sound of wind in the elm trees
or the chirp of birds flying home for the night."

and then rearrange it to ignore the logical break up thus:

"the sound of wind in the elm trees or the chirp
of birds flying home for the night."

And there you are, replace some of the mundane words with flowery synonyms, throw in some splendid adjectives for the polish and you have your very own bouquet of words!

Check out www.rhymezone.com for quick access to synonyms, rhyming and related words

-suman datta

in today's issue:

poetry | shorts | relativity | critique


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