Friday, April 9, 2010

Poetry Friday: Poetry Is. . .

In keeping with my "quotes about poetry" theme for the month, I'm pleased to share this poem by J. Patrick Lewis, who gives us fifteen exquisite and highly quotable definitions of poetry.

Which one speaks to you?


Poetry Is…

the tunnel at the end of the light.
an anagram for “Yo, esprit!”
commotion in the left field stanzas.
the great flywheel of metaphor.
prose, bent out of shape.
the idiom of the djinns.
experience’s armor against oblivion.
the midwife at the birth of the alphabet.
perfect verbs hunting elusive nouns.
an antidote for the adjective-itis bug.
a factual-to-fanciful metric converter.
words on a busman’s holiday.
a ladder to the castle in the air.
a blind date with enchantment.
the sound of silence…amplified.

----J. Patrick Lewis, all rights reserved

Poetry Friday is hosted today by Paper Tigers.

This post is part of a month-long celebration of not-quite-daily quotes about poets, poems, and poetry. For more quotes, see the archive of the Poetry Quote of the Day. There are many more National Poetry Month celebrations across the Kidlitosphere.

10 comments:

  1. Love this "definition." Thanks so much for sharing it!
    Carmela
    TeachingAuthors

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  2. Oh! I love "blind date with enchantment" and "midwife at the birth of the alphabet." What a perfect poem for your month of quotes!

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  3. "prose, bent out of shape" for sure, although "the sound of silence…amplified" is a close second.

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  4. Oh! I love this...my favorite lines are verbs hunting elusive nouns and the sound of silence...amplified.

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  5. Ah, the sound of silence...amplified. Bingo.

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  6. I will be adding this to my commonplace book when I get home. What a wonderful poem Pat has provided us all!

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  7. Yet another example of why he's the poet and I need to keep my day job...

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  8. I could narrow it no further down than six:

    commotion in the left field stanzas.

    prose, bent out of shape.

    experience’s armor against oblivion.

    a factual-to-fanciful metric converter.

    a blind date with enchantment.

    the sound of silence…amplified.

    Thanks, Sara!

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  9. It's great to come back and read it again today - I agree with Kelly that this is one to be noted down and kept to hand.

    The lines that strike a particular choed with me are -

    the midwife at the birth of the alphabet.

    a ladder to the castle in the air.

    the sound of silence…amplified

    ...

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