Topic: Thank you to Odin

Thank you, Odin, for founding the Free Verse Poets group. Here we are, just the two of us so far. I hope the group will be a place where I can learn what free verse is really meant to be. I sort of invented my own merely by reading a lot of good published poets.

I've been studying Mary Oliver's "A Poetry Handbook" in which she says of free verse, "Rhythm underlies everything."  She also says, "Alter the line length or the established rhythm when you want to, or need to, or choose to, to change the very physiological mood of the reader."   But she warns: " Change the line length or rhythm arbitrarily, or casually, and you have puzzled and sensually irritated the reader -- thrown him from his trance of interest and pleasure."

So I conclude that free verse is not really free of rules.

Re: Thank you to Odin

I like this. The take home message is: "Rhythm underlies everything." That's enough to go on.

Re: Thank you to Odin

"Rhythm underlies everything."

Rhythm is what gives you your meter and beat in the poem.
The lines can be long or short
If you line change at the wrong moment in the poem the reader loses the beat and Rhythm
Therefore you lose them
That is why Rhythm unlies everything.

Gregg Rowe

Re: Thank you to Odin

Make it three

Re: Thank you to Odin

Make it four! and having rhythm makes sense to me.  I would get irritated if the rhythm was interrupted:)

6 (edited by TirzahLaughs 2016-03-30 15:17:18)

Re: Thank you to Odin

Actually, I'm here too...but no one ever posts.  smile  Even in Free Verse, a writer 'feels' when a line is off, too short, too long, pausing in the wrong place.   Just because you can 't see the form, doesn't mean one isn't there.

It's a bit more 'free style' but it still has style.