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David Wood David Wood Male, 64, United Kingdom (6/17/2013 7:43:00 AM)

The world looks on to world leaders to bring about change at the G8 summet this week. As a poet I have written a poem called G8 that I hope you will read. As poets all we have are words as our armour to use. The strongest weapon is the pen. So I invite all who read this to write a peom about the G8 summit and put it on PH for the world to read.

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  • Rookie - 762 Points Lamont Palmer (6/17/2013 8:46:00 PM) Post reply
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    Wood, the only thing wrong with G8 (on first blush, I read it very quickly) isn't the actual formalism, but its the lilting, trite end rhymes. Even though in Great Britain there's more of a tolerance for it, you're still better off leaving it behind, yet keeping the tightness and concision. If you drop the rhyme and find other words to end your sentences with, G8 will improve in a major way immediately. Obviously you gravitate to meter, which is fine. But you do need to stay away from cliches. Read some formalists who are extremely original and lyrical: John Holland, David Ferry, (Ferry just won the National Book Award this year) Seamus Heaney, Marilyn Hacker, A.E.Stallings, Campbell MacGrath, Harry Clifton - poets who are living and still writing a fresh, contemporary type of formalism. In fact, Heaney and Clifton would be excellent models for you, sharing your sensibilities more so, perhaps, than those American poets I named. Even Carol Ann Duffy, who writes in a very imagistic, musical style (though she takes her slings and arrows for sometimes being 'obvious') would be a solid poet to absorb. Good luck. -LP

  • Rookie - 589 Points Jefferson Carter (6/17/2013 11:41:00 AM) Post reply

    David, I read " G8" and didn't like it much. Why imitate 19th-century rhyming verse? The battle against formal verse, especially sing-song formal verse, was lost about 60 years ago. You need to STOP writing and start reading. Whether you want to write contemporary poetry or not, you don't have a choice. If you're serious about writing better poems, immerse yourself in the work of good contemporary poets, like Charles Simic, Philip Levine, Mary Oliver, etc. If you're not serious about writing decent poetry, why bother to post?

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