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A site for exploration and discussion about verse, poetics, the aesthetic, and creative writing in general.

Because there is a profound difference between writing something to be read and writing something worth reading; and in that difference might beauty be found.

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Monday, March 11, 2013

"Times Like These: Marianna, Florida" by L. Lamar Wilson -- Poetry Daily, 3/11/13

from Sacreligion (Carolina Wren Press Poetry Series)
poem found here

prose poems and paragraph poems

— reformatted 3/30/14

Come on, Poetry Daily. You couldn't do the simple fix to fix how that line looks? Rather the epitomy of laziness, there. Not cool at all.

I guess I ought to say more, but this poem is being persnickety. I will say that, for myself, as far as prose poems go, the bar for me is T.S. Eliot's "Hysteria." A prose poem is rather a peculiar hybrid: it is prose, but there is in the concept of it being not only prose the demand that it is something more than mere prose; even, something more than great prose. Something different than prose. What that means is that a prose poem is, then, in no small way, a kind of set piece (as the phrase is used in soccer), and demands not only precision   a different kind of precision than in poetry, and, perhaps, to an even hreater degree   but that kind of elegance that you see in a brilliant set piece in soccer.

Without the precision and the flourish of brilliance, it is nothing more than a paragraph.

As for this example, I leave it to you. I will say I like how travel is presented merely with "field," "another field"; but, I think the next sentence should begin with "so" or "as such" or such an organizing word, something that shifts the idea from single things along the road to actual movement along the road.

And skein is misused. I can't get it to work, with whatever metaphorical manipulations I might try. And, as I said, prose poems demand precision, for every flaw easily becomes glaring.


Goodnight, talk about imprecision and being persnickety: my sentences are fighting me today. Better quit while I can.

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