Prologue

“Poetry is not a profession, it’s a way of life. It’s an empty basket; you put your life into it and make something out of that.”

Mary Oliver

 

Poems, verses, mga tula at iba pang mga bagay na gusto kong ihayag sa pamamagitan ng pagsusulat.

Many of us bloggers and writers find an imperishable joy in writing. But most online writers nowadays focus on what’s on trend: travel, fashion, tutorials, photography, and may be just for fun. That’s something that social media citizens like to talk about because it relates to their everyday living, and sometimes it creates a channel to be relieved from stressful moments.

 

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A few people gain interest in writing poems and other forms of literature and writing. Maybe because it gets too cliche, or maybe because poetry is already dead. Patay na daw mga bes. 

But no–it’s not!

*insert Look What You Made Me Do by Taylor Swift* Just kidding!

A few writers and bloggers make use of poetry as their main feature in blogging. Sadly, few of them get noticed, appreciated, and sometimes, their write-ups end up in trash cans. Sayang lang ng effort. May be because most people are thinking about poetry as a very restricting mode of expression and communication because it limits the writer and the reader itself to a standard of syllables, words, and rhyming.

But surprise surprise! Na-surprise ka ba? Ako kasi hindi. Pero seryoso na tayo. Poetry is not just about what you think it is. Akala mo lang ganon siya, pero hindi! Percy Shelley, a famous poet, defined poetry as “the expression of imagination”. It is an expression of the mind’s passions coated in a glamour of creativity. It’s also “an escape from emotion” (T.S. Eliot) because it aims to convey a message powerful enough to move a thousand, a “spontaneous flow of powerful feelings” (W. Wordsworth), and above all, it’s a “journal of a sea animal living on land, wanting to fly the air” (Carl Sandburg).

Not that convinced?

As a writer and poet, I look at poetry as revelation and unfolding of life’s beauty and experiences, through the use of human language, in order to convey and express the most interior, weirdest, and deepest of thoughts, with just a pint of star dust. It’s a map–that gives you landmarks to reach the writers sentiments and emotions and then make it as your own. It’s philosophy using passions instead of reason to explain life.

Complicated and weird though, right?

It also bestows some good things to its readers, and more importantly to its writers since it use emotions to evoke a sense of social mutuality between the reader and the writer, and makes them feel accompanied, secured, and understood. It teaches us how to deal with life, anger, and frustration, by channeling it through words. It finds its relevance in today’s modern era and even in whatever generation it goes by because human emotions and feelings don’t get passe and it constantly lives so long as something exists.

As John Coleman puts it in his article titled, The Benefits of Poetry for Professionals” in 2012 as found in Harvard Business Review:

 

“Poetry teaches us to wrestle with and simplify complexity… The number one thematic benefit poetry users cited was “understanding” — of the world, the self, and others.”

 

He states that people who engage in the arts, specifically in writing poems are those persons who are more sociable, with an acute sense of empathy, highly intellectual, and able to deal with a multi-faceted complex environment.

According to PongoTeenWriting.org:

 

Writing poetry is a way to grow emotionally and intellectually, as language articulates and frames experience symbolically. Writing poetry is also a natural process, serving people’s innate need to explain themselves and their lives in the world.

 

It is an outlet and at the same time a source of people who are in pain, struggle, and depressed. It is a way to feel listened and understood. A way to express your cognitive, emotional, and cultural appreciation of things.

Poetry heals, develops, nurtures, and stimulates the mind, the heart, and most especially the soul in a different unexplained way.

Writing poems saved my life. It saved me from losing my mind. It saved me from depression and complete self-damage. Words are so powerful that it can destroy one’s personality: one’s life and outlook, but undeniably, it is also the way to put one’s self back together and to fix things straight.

They say that words are powerful and can change anything, and indeed they are.

 

Credits and links:

Coleman, John. “The Benefits of Poetry to Professionals” (2012) https://hbr.org/2012/11/the-benefits-of-poetry-for-pro
Jaffe, Richard. “5 Ways You Benefit From Poetry” (2013) http://blog.americansforthearts.org/2013/04/04/5-ways-you-benefit-from-writing-poetry-from-the-partnership-movement
Pongo Teen Writing. “Benefits of Writing Poetry” (2009) http://www.pongoteenwriting.org/Benefits-of-Writing-Poetry.html

 

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