Kim Barney

Gold Star - 178,432 Points (Oct 6 / I was born in a bank - - my mother went there and made a deposit)

Forget The Form - Poem by Kim Barney

Poem Hunter does not require you
to identify the form of your poem,
so why should you bother to do so?

If you don't try to identify the form,
you can't possibly get it wrong!
On a recent Member Poem of the Day,

the poet said the poem was blank verse.
It was not. It was free verse. Blank verse
and free verse are not the same thing!

If you don't know the difference, why
should you try to label it one or the other?
Even if you do know the difference,

why bother? Your readers will know
what the form is, or if they don't,
they won't care one way or the other!

If I write a villanelle but don't tell you
that it's a villanelle, you will either
like the poem or you won't, but

You will not care that it is or is not
a villanelle. There are certain poets
on this website who always say

that their poems are Rime Royale
or Rhyme Royal. Not one of those
poems that I have seen so far has been.

Ted Kooser, Who was U. S. Poet
Laureate from 2004 to 2006, said:
"I've never seen any advantage to

calling attention to the form of the poem.
I want MY … reader to be experiencing
the poetry, not drawing back to think

about the form and to wonder if
Kooser's got all his rhymes
in the right places."

For that matter, why does Poem Hunter
require us to list a TOPIC for the poem?
Can't the reader tell what the topic is?

Poem Hunter used to have a box for the
reader to fill in that said "What do you
think this poem is about? " but I think

they have got rid of that box since they
started FORCING us to supply a topic
for our poems. I just looked and I don't

see that box anymore. One poet (and you
probably know who this is)almost always
selects "green" as the topic for his poems,

even though most of his poems have nothing
to do with "green"! Is he just rebelling at
the fact that we have to supply a topic?

If I write what I think is a love poem,
but you don't recognize it as a love poem,
have I really written a love poem?

If I write about the garbage collectors
or their trucks but label it a love poem,
is it now truly a love poem?

I'm not sure what to put as the topic for this.
"Diatribe" is not a recognized topic, and
neither are "harangue" and "tirade".

Topic(s) of this poem: green

Comments about Forget The Form by Kim Barney

  • wes vogler (2/11/2020 1:27:00 PM)

    since a poem, type is required... whenever I am in doubt (or don't care) I label it doggerel (Report)Reply

    Kim Barney(2/11/2020 5:33:00 PM)

    No, Wes, that's just the point. The type or form of the poem is NOT REQUIRED, So why label it doggerel if you don't have to label it anything?

    The SUBJECT or TOPIC is required, but the form or type is not. Save yourself some time and effort and stop labeling it!
    (Notice that I did not label this one.)

    3 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Robert Murray SmithRobert Murray Smith (2/10/2020 4:22:00 AM)

    Most of my poems are called poems, or about life. I found this writing interesting. (Report)Reply

    Kim BarneyKim Barney(2/10/2020 11:09:00 AM)

    Actually, most of my poems use the subject LIFE also, so I guess in some ways, we think alike, Fran!
    Thank you for commenting.

    5 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
Read all 4 comments »

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

Poem Submitted: Monday, February 10, 2020

Poem Edited: Tuesday, February 11, 2020

[Report Error]