Poetry = Fail

Poetry.  I can’t write it, I can’t read it, and I can’t critique it.  Why not, you ask?  Why should I tell you, I ask?  Here ends the post.

Goodness, you are annoying.  You must want more than that, and yet you’re too stubborn to ask.  I ended the post early expecting you to ask, and you don’t!

Oh, well.  I’ll go on, don’t you fret.

When I read anything, I read pretty quickly.  If something isn’t too interesting, I’m scanning, using only seconds for each paragraph.  Even if it is interesting, I’m still going pretty fast.  And that’s with prose.

When it’s poetry and the lines

are like this

my eyes start speeding up

until I’m going

at a rate of

approximately

two lines per

second,

or less.

Eventually

I’ll start skipping stanzas and

before I know it

And that’s why you should

feed a platypus

daily.

My eyes  begin to speed up when I see short lines.  It’s just the way I read.  Unfortunately, it leads to large holes in the middle of poems that are probably well written.  If the lines don’t rhyme, even worse occurs.  Usually when I read rhyming poetry I’ll be looking for the rhyming words at the end, and if there are none I’ll realize it and start skipping entire lines, then stanzas.  The same happens with irregular amounts of syllables.  In regular poetry, the syllable amounts match, the words rhyme, and I can probably get by if I slow myself down sufficiently by counting out the separate syllables with taps.  But it doesn’t happen often.

I must confess that in books like the Redwall series I would always skip over the songs.  Why put songs in literature, anyway?  It doesn’t make much sense to me.

That brings me to another point.  Why can I tolerate songs?  Regular music with words?  Because, duh, it’s music.  I’m hearing it, not reading it.  My mental acceleration only occurs in reading.

I can’t write poetry because I can’t study the good stuff.  The only reason I can write prose well is because I’ve grown up studying the right way to do it.  If I can’t read poetry, I can’t write it either.  And for me, poetry is not instinct.  I can barely get together a list of five rhyming words without half of my brain cells popping off into oblivion.

And all of this leads to my last point: I cannot critique poetry either.

If you can’t write it and you can’t read it, you can’t be expected to write a review or give thoughts on poetry.  Sorry, but I can’t do it and I won’t try.  So there!  *throws temper tantrum*

For you poets out there:  This is not just an enormous ploy to get you to stop expecting me to critique your stuff.  It’s my failing, not yours, so don’t be offended in the slightest.

And, to back up my points in this post, here is some poetry that came to me recently as perfect for the Phils’ theme song:

Past, present, future,
We’ll do without a suture,
If you’ll only put your* trust in Phils!

*”Put your” to rhyme with “future” and “suture”

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59 Comments

  1. I do that speeding-up thing with poetry, too. 🙂 So I’m guessing you didn’t like the Sorting Hat’s song? 😛 I can handle a few songs in books, like the Oompa Loompas’ songs, but they have to be really funny/creative or I move on…

    Reply
  2. I don’t know if J.K. Rowling A) didn’t feel like writing very many of those, or B) was just as ticked off by those as you were, but she manages to write the story so that Harry misses a lot of the next few Sortings, and doesn’t have to listen to the song. 😛 Therefore, I think there are only… 2? 3? more….

    Reply
  3. Charley R

     /  June 9, 2012

    I do speed up with poetry, but I’m beginning to get better at pinning myself to the page. The way around it for me is to stop looking for the progression and just – extreme nerd moment coming up here – enjoy the flow of the language and words. I love the Romantic poets for that, they all use such wonderful imagery and language and … it makes me go fangirl just thinking of some of them. You might like Byron’s “Vision of Judgement” – it’s very clever, very funny, and I think it’s wacky enough to be right up your street.

    It’s long, I warn you, but trust me. I’m always right 😉

    Reply
    • This is the problem: It doesn’t matter how funny the poem is. I can’t make it through. That’s why I wrote the post. Your poem, when I first figured this disability out, was very creative as well, and yet I could not focus.

      Reply
      • Charley R

         /  June 9, 2012

        No worries – not everybody can read everything. Maybe your poetry deficiency is compensated by your as yet unexplored talent for enjoying Vogon literature? Or perhaps you can read Elvish .. backwards.

      • I wish I could read Elvish forwards. I probably could learn… Language studies, here I come!

      • Charley R

         /  June 9, 2012

        Heheh, I’m sure you can learn it somewhere!

      • Yeah, I’ve got a book of Tolkien languages upstairs…

      • Charley R

         /  June 10, 2012

        Go to it! xD

  4. Ah, I tend to do the same thing when reading songs in books. It drives me insane. I hate it when they put an incredibly long song in a book. I’m not here to read about songs, I’m here to read a story, and yet they go and sing for a whole chapter. *sighs*
    I cannot say that I am a horrible rhymer, because that would be lying. I’m actually quite fond of writing poetry, except that one time when I wrote a very depressing poem that made a dear friend want to curl up in a ball and cry. o_o
    And now in other news, I have finished the Airborn series. A review on the first book is coming Monday, so check my blog for it then. I’ll see if I have time to review the other two, but it all depends on if I can finish spreading bark today…durn this bark.

    Reply
    • Depressing poems are awesome.
      That’s good. I’ll look for your review then. I’m in the middle of Jack Blank etc., and liking it a lot. I think you were mistaken when you said that the beginning was slow. It’s quite good.

      Reply
      • That’s good that you’re enjoying it, but I’m still going to stand by my opinion. It wasn’t like the beginning was action-packed adventures, but rather just sort of him explaining everything, which bored me. But I digress. Let me know when you finish it because the second book in the trilogy is excellent and you simply must read it! The third book has not been published…tragedy.

      • I definitely enjoyed the ending. That was the high point of the book. Brilliant.
        Just because the author doesn’t begin the book with bullets flying past the MC’s head doesn’t mean that the beginning is slow. In fact, it had everything but bullets– only robot-zombies, explosions, and boatloads of humor. The book was interesting and very well written in my opinion.

      • Do you plan on reviewing it anytime soon?

      • Yes, I finished it the same day I said I was reading it. I’ve got a draft started for that review. Unfortunately, since I’m reading so many books (I must have read about 20 books in the past two weeks), I’ve got to be picky about what I review. This one was definitely worth it though.

  5. Ah, you’ll make it through. 😛 And if not, don’t worry.

    There isn’t any more singing in the series.

    Reply
  6. Voldemort should totally have a theme song, though. 😛

    Reply
  7. Wait. So what do you think about novels told in verse? Like Out Of The Dust by Karen Hesse?

    Reply
  8. I’m not all too fond of reading poetry either. Maybe it’s because I have a short attention span, or maybe I’m just strange (probably the latter – I’m “mutant and proud” after all) but somehow I find poetry kind of boring at times… It just doesn’t captivate me like prose does. For some reason, I find it quite surprising you haven’t read the whole Harry Potter series (maybe I’m just biased because I’m an avid fan, so forgive me if I come across as judgmental – I’m really not trying to be.) Which book are you up to now? I strongly, strongly advise you to continue reading until the end because the entire series is just brilliant, and I’m on the verge of fangirling over it so I shall spare you from my strangeness and leave you in peace now. bye.

    Reply
    • Prose has a broader language and a less restricted style that I like better than poetry.
      I’ve only read the first book, and am planning to read the second… once I find it. (In my defense, it hasn’t been present anywhere I’ve looked for the last few months now.)

      Reply
      • That’s definitely true. I also find it somewhat easier to express my ideas through prose – there’s just more room for detail, and I tend to be pretty detailed. And about Harry Potter, I may be able to help you with that. The whole series can be found as free e-books online, it just depends on whether or not you prefer reading hard copies to e-copies. All you have to do is type in “Harry Potter and the [*insert title here*] free pdf” and you should get a lot of good links. Here is an example of book 2: http://www.husspr.com/images/2.-Harry_Potter_and_the_Chamber_of_Secrets.pdf (not sure if I’m allowed to post links on here, but there’s no harm in trying I guess).

      • I will never resort to e-books while hard copies exist. How dare you…

    • Haha, Mo. That’s what I keep telling him, too. He should continue because it’s so brilliant and… the characters get better. 😛 Hopefully he won’t continue to hate everyone but Dumbledore… Hmm. I’m actually surprised you didn’t like Draco, Liam, because… I don’t know, I could imagine him writing this blog…

      Reply
      • Hey, I never said I liked Dumbledore; I just dislike him less than the others. Harry Potter should have been the villain.
        (This popped into my head the other day, one of the shortest books never written: Lord Voldemort’s Guide to Skin Care.)
        Just because I’m conceited, have morbid tendencies and am vicious and conniving on days, it doesn’t mean I’m like Malfoy. Though I can side with him on wanting to give HP his comeuppance… And since Voldemort is set on killing Potter, perhaps I ought to help him out too.
        I’m sorry, but I’m a little skeptical of why HP is so great. That’ll change when I read the later books– I hope.

  9. That’s an amazing idea for a book… *stares off into space dreamily* The sequel could be Bellatrix Lestrange’s Guide to Hair Care… *pulls herself back to reality* Wow, real life is so boring in comparison to books…

    It’s hard to really say what makes HP great without mega spoilers. 😛

    Reply
  10. Seeing as I can’t reply to Liam or Neville, I’ll write out my replies here (sorry Liam, hope that’s all right with you :S. Just trying to continue the discussion. If this comment is too long, just disregard it – I wouldn’t want to fill your blog with my nonsense).

    Firstly, @Liam: I KNOW I KNOW I can’t stand e-books either! It just doesn’t have the same feeling as reading actual books, and they also make my eyes go all funny after a while. Then again, I’m the sort of person who wouldn’t mind putting myself through all that, so long as I can continue reading something I enjoy (yes, I can become that obsessed). I understand completely if you’d rather continue your search for hard copies though (if I had the time and money, that’s what I’d do too). Have you tried any local libraries/book stores? Harry Potter is a really well known book, I’m surprised it’s taking you this long to find sequels O_o” Maybe they’re just selling out really fast xD.

    I’m not quite sure what your taste in books is like, but I think Harry Potter is something that can appeal to people of all ages, with different tastes. I suppose I’m a tad biased about the subject, but I find Harry Potter easy to read and enjoy, mainly because it deals with themes other than romance (which is quite refreshing compared with all the soppy teenage lovey-dovey stuff that’s getting sold these days). The first book can be quite simple in terms of language, but as you progress through the series, the plots become more complex and darker, and her writing style generally becomes more interesting to read (at least, it did for me).

    @Nevillegirl: YAY! I’ve found a HP fan! Lets be HP fangirl buddies xD. I’m sure Liam won’t be able to keep hating everyone – the characters are much too lovable, and he couldn’t possibly hate Neville or Luna, could he? And the Weasley twins? That would be impossible. Dislike them, maybe. But hate? And I completely agree with you about Draco! When I first stumbled upon this blog, his style really reminded me of Malfoy (as well as a bunch of my favourite villains from other books). Perhaps that’s why I enjoy his posts so much.

    Reply
    • Mutant: I don’t buy any books unless I love them. As you’ve seen from what I’ve said on HP… And the library has only the first, third, sixth and seventh. Currently, that is… I keep checking for the second.

      “Harry Potter is something that can appeal to people of all ages…” This is my problem with it. The series obviously grows with the reader, but when the reader is in high school and could read them in the space of two months (if they had all of the books)… I doubt that the next generation of readers will like HP as much as the current one does. If that is the case, I’d be pretty glad. I’ve heard too much raving about HP already, and I’ve made it a point to avoid anything to do with HP. (Ask Izzy [aka, Nevillgirl]– she knows.)

      Izzy: Right now, I loath the sight and sound of any character from HP, and Neville was one of the most pathetic. The second most pathetic was Dumbledore.

      “It’s hard to really say what makes HP great without mega spoilers.” This is what I object to: every single fan of HP insists on saying how great HP is… and they don’t give a single reason why. Talk about the writing style, perhaps– no spoilers can possibly come from that! Are there a ton of plot twists? Humor? You already said a little about romance. Does the author actually take any themes from her own imagination, or does she just copy things all the way as in the first book? It’s hard to imagine Harry Potter without the word “cliche” as its biggest description.

      Sorry, guys– I’m really pounding HP and I haven’t even read most of it. But I do think that people are too devoted to HP.

      Reply
      • Well, besides the writing style. But I’ve already blathered on about that…

        Hmm. Humor, yes. Plot twists, OH YES.

        What?! My Gravatar won’t show… *throws things at her computer in frustration*

      • Ah, no you haven’t.
        Your gravatar shows here. I hate it.

      • Harry Potter DOES grow with the reader. However, that does not mean people of all ages can’t enjoy it. The language used in HP is appropriate enough for children, and the fantasy appeals to them. At the same time, adults can also enjoy the series because they’re mature and intelligent enough to understand the underlying themes and motifs. Basically, it is a series that (as I mentioned before) can appeal to all readers because of the way it is written. The writing style may be simple, with little flair in diction, but that is what makes it appeal to children and adults at the same time – it isn’t something over complicated that takes a while to digest.
        As for what’s good about it without giving spoilers… Well, I guess you could say HP teaches you a lot of things, and is easy to relate to in a way. For instance, HP is centered around friendship and courage. It gives readers the sense that with bravery and love, you can accomplish anything – even bring down an evil wizard that resembles a creepy reptile. In HP, it doesn’t matter if you’re an orphan, if you aren’t of right “heritage” or even if you’re incredibly poor and come from a family with too many mouths to feed. If you try hard, and aren’t afraid, anything is possible. I know, I know, it all sounds so soppy and pathetic, but I guess… Well, I guess you’ll see how touching it all is when you finally finish the series. xD. And hey, at least it isn’t about love that is more important than life itself, or glittery vampires, right?

      • Mutant: I disagree. I think that people of some ages can enjoy the first few books, people of another age group enjoy the next few, and people of a third age (not Aragorn, though– only funny if you read the Silmarillion) enjoy the last few. People from the second and third ages can’t enjoy the first few (my position), and people from the first age can’t enjoy the last few because they can’t understand it. But people from all different ages cannot enjoy all of the books at once. Unless they grow with the books, the books aren’t enjoyable.

        It is with all series that people say “When you read the last book you’ll like the series!” It’s because the last book is almost always the best of the series because it’s the climax, and of course the author has the greatest amount of practice. And it’s good if a series starts out good and then progresses to a greater level. Unfortunately, it’s got to start good.

        And I don’t read anything about love being all-important, and I avoid vampires with all my strength.

  11. Wow, if you can’t find the next HP book, you should come to my local library. 😛 It has about 30 copies of each book… and 30 copies of Beedle too…

    I sometimes enjoy romance, but I’m very picky about it. I liked the romance in HP because… there isn’t much of it? xD I hope you like how it gets darker.

    YAY! Actually, I believe Liam told me that Neville was extremely stupid, and not even endearingly so. 😛 HE GETS BETTER.

    I imagine Liam would hang out with people like the Malfoys, Snape, Bellatrix, etc…

    Your blog is cool, Mo!

    Reply
    • Wow. 30 copies?! Your library must be huge. My local library only has around 3 copies of each :c. I like the romance in HP because there’s enough romance to excite the audience, but it isn’t overdone. Plus, in HP, the females are just as strong as the males are. It isn’t one of those series where the females are all heart broken and yearning for some pathetic man who just dumps them for someone more attractive. Liam probably only hates everyone now because he’s only on the first book, and I think the first book was probably the worst written out of the whole series. Not saying it’s bad, of course. It’s just that the characters progress and develop a lot throughout the series, as JK Rowling’s writing improves with experience. I’m sure if he reads on till the last book, where the characters become darker and more complex, he’d find HP much more enjoyable. So just bear with it for now, Liam. HP could very well change your view on life itself. And thanks Nevillegirl/Izzy! :). I’m very new to blogging so I haven’t got that many posts, but hopefully that shall change with determination and consistency. I think your blog is great too ^^

      Reply
      • Yes, our library is huge. 😀 I love it!

        I like that in HP, people have a life aside from their boyfriends/girlfriends. In Twilight, as an example, Bella basically doesn’t feel like doing ANYTHING without Edward. In HP, Hermione has no problem being away from *SPOILER REMOVED*, and I like that. Have a boy/girlfriend, but you don’t have to be with them all the time! That’s just clingy! So, I think the romance is well-done…

        You’re welcome! And thanks! I’m still figuring out WordPress though I’ve had my blog for 18+ months… Liam told me how to add an avatar yesterday… O_o *facepalms* I am so lame.

      • Hahahahaha. I don’t even know how to add an avatar yet. Are you and Liam friends irl? You seem pretty close :P. And yes, the romance is way over the top in Twilight. That’s what put me off the series (that, and the fact that vampires sparkle – I mean, honestly? Vampires are supposed to be deadly creatures, not diamonds). It just kind of upsets me that Bella is such a weakling, who lives only for Edward and can’t function properly without him. Though I don’t hate Twilight, I don’t appreciate how Meyer portrays Bella as weak, clumsy, and basically everything that’s opposite of perfect, whilst Edward is described as some Godly being (he even SMELLS good). Harry Potter on the other hand, teaches us that friendship, courage and determination are the keys to success. I think this is a much more suitable lesson for young kids, as opposed to “finding a handsome vampire and marrying him at 17 is the key to success, for love is more important than life itself”.

      • Mutant: I have seen only three people who read my blog in real life– and Izzy is not one of them. Obviously, or I’m sure she’d have loaned me a copy of HP2 by now. (Just requested it from the library, so I’m on the right track.)
        I never plan to read Twilight. Though the title and cover art sound and look awesome, the story seems horrible.

  12. I have many times on my blog…

    YES! Well, it wasn’t showing at the time. Actually, I think I want a different one…

    Reply
  13. @Mo’s other comment, because I can’t reply to it…

    Yes, when I first read HP, I read it for the story. The action, adventure, etc. Now I reread it mostly for the themes.

    Maybe you could sum up HP’s awesomeness with: People are really complex. And that’s why it’s awesome, because you learn a lot about the characters.

    *facepalms* Whenever people ask me, “Why don’t you like Twilight?! It’s a love story!!!!!!” I respond with, “No. HP is the best love story ever.” *coughcoughcough*

    Reply
  14. The thing is, though, that you haven’t read all the books yet. O_o I think people of all ages can enjoy the books, just on different levels. I think that’s true of most books. When I was younger, I was all, “La la la, I’m reading a story about Harry at school, having adventures…” and now that I’m older, it’s more about the adult characters and their motives for doing stuff.

    Reply
    • I’m making assumptions based upon the fact that if I had picked that book up in the library and read through it, I would not read the rest. As it is, I’ve let myself become dead weight and let the raving reviews and popularity motivate me to read the rest.

      Reply
  15. I love how there are hardly any vampires in HP. 😛

    I mean, if you’re going to read a story about a Bella who obsessively loves someone who looks creepy, HP has that too, and does it better than Twilight. 😛

    Reply
  16. *is reading old posts out of boredom, so you’ll have to excuse me, sorry*

    Ooh, fun. Poetry. *sarcasm* When I read poetry, I find imaginary rhythm (imaginary, mind you, because I can’t seem to really find the real one), and then when I go back to reading prose, I read…that…with the same…rhythm…even though…it’s not…even there! It’s highly annoying and incredibly frustrating. That said, that’s about all I can do with poetry. It usually goes in one ear…and right back out the other. My brain just falls asleep or something.

    Out of curiousity, have you still not read the Harry Potter books? I read the first three and then got bored with the fourth one and gave up. And that’s back when people were excited about the fifth movie about to come out. I suppose they’re sort of on my to-read list still, but…at the very bottom.

    Reply

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