|Posted on April 10, 2019 at 7:30 PM||comments (0)|
You can’t break the rules of poetry because technically their aren’t any. I’ll wait while you read that again and calm down..go on, relax and calm down. You good? Okay. Now what I mean by there are no rules is just that. There aren’t any list of rules that state how poetry has to be or what it should and should not have. Sure there’s tons of people and sites who have come up with lists of their own of rules of poetry but these by definition are their rules and not official rules of the poetry world or community. Anything that one could consider a rule about poetry isn’t a rule but a common sense principle of writing poetry. I’ll get into examples and details in a moment but just know that if someone tells you that you broke the rules of poetry just either tell them that there are no rules or smile and walk away.
Poetry needs emotion-
Refer to my post on this. Not only does poetry not need to be written with emotion but you can write tons of poems without feeling any sort of emotion. People naturally assume that it has to be written with emotion, feeling but the truth is, it doesn’t and just because you didn’t use it doesn’t mean it won’t give the reader feelings or make them emotional.
Poetry needs to rhyme-
Anyone who believes this either doesn’t truly know or understand poetry or just assumes one thing with the other. Prose is poetry without rhyming and with the use of powerful words doesn’t involve any rhyming whatsoever. It doesn’t need to rhyme to be good and it doesn’t need rhyme to be considered poetry.
Rhymes need to connect-
Not a rule but more of that common sense principle I mentioned earlier. Let’s be honest we are all guilty of rhyming a word with another that has nothing to do with the poem it’s called being an amateur but we grow over time. A good poet finds words to rhyme that go together and if not they use a different word that rhymes or they are clever and really make that word rhyme within reason. Again this isn’t a rule but more something you pick up and understand over time.
Poetry can’t have punctuation-
Someone said this to me once when they noticed a poem I had written have several commas. I simply replied back that poetry is what you make it and can be written any way you want it to and since it’s written word like anything it needs to have proper punctuation.
Poetry needs form-
Again this should be a given so that doesn’t make it a rule. Poetry naturally needs form, structure, a way to which its written but that doesn’t mean it’s a rule.
Now do you understand? People will say poetry needs this or poetry needs that but these are the same people who believe that poetry is dead or they try way to hard to follow the very rules that they made up to appease the imaginary poetry gods that they also made up. Case in point? Poetry does not have any rules you can break, only the rules to which are essential to all things written. Just because you write different than someone else doesn’t mean you can make up rules for them. Poetry is a way of expression, writing it is no different.
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|Posted on April 10, 2019 at 7:00 PM||comments (0)|
Poetry. It is a way of expression, a way with words, a way in which a person writes down their feelings and emotions. However, some may be surprised to know that poetry doesn’t always have to be about or need to involve emotion. Now I know what you’re thinking, but poetry is almost all emotion, it’s a person putting everything they are feeling onto paper pouring their heart out. Yes, in a way you’d be right but only to an extent. Nothing says poetry has to be about emotion or even written with it we just naturally assume this because in most cases when we feel down or want to express our emotions, some of us do so through poetry. Emotion may be a standard in poetry but it is not a priority, meaning it is not always necessary. Poetry invokes many different types of emotion from reading but the main point I’m getting across here is that it doesn’t need to be written with emotion. That’s not to say poetry without emotion isn’t as good but the fact is that it does exist and there are some examples of it.
When I wrote my first book, The Macabre Masterpiece: Poems of Horror and Gore I knew I wanted to write horror poetry. While I knew the poems would create emotions in the reader and the words written involve emotion I myself didn’t really use emotion to write them. They weren’t my experiences or something that had happened to me. They were written for entertainment and came from creation and imagination and not emotion. See? Poetry without emotion can be done. Another example of this is some of Edgar Allan Poe’s poems however I would imagine most did come from emotion, the emotion of depression as the man was always down and in a gloomy mood.
Poetry can be whatever you want it to be. It can be something you want people to know about you, something you want someone to know, or it can be a story in poetry form. One could say regardless of how and what you write about that emotion is needed in order to write it but I would have to disagree. I have nothing against writing with emotion, many of my poems I‘ve written have lots of and were written emotion I’m merely saying that sometimes although not always emotion and poetry do not always go hand in hand.
Poetry is a feeling and a creation. It is everything and it is nothing. Poetry with emotion could be said to be more real, more pure and authentic. Poetry without it is said to lack substance and real drive but again this is just assumed as a person can write a poetry about anything without emotion just as good as a poem with emotion can be written. Remember, no matter how you write poetry and regardless of what you write about it doesn’t have to be written with emotion but you can be believe that emotion is still a part and involved in it.
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|Posted on April 10, 2018 at 3:35 PM||comments (0)|
Forced Rhyme, It can mainly be found in poetry and in song lyrics. It’s when a poet/songwriter rhymes a word with another but the word seems contrived, forced and has little to do with what the poem/song is about or doesn’t connect to the sentence or word. Is forced rhyme bad? In my opinion yes, it means your not all that creative or clever enough to come up with words to fit what your writing and it makes you look amateurish, unless of course you are an amateur which in case I suppose forced rhyme gets a pass. Forced rhyme shows a lack of creativity, means your really trying too hard to make the rhyme work and you can even turn off readers if you do it too much.
Sometimes you can get away with it but never ever should you rely on it, I myself try not to force rhyme but if I feel I’m using a word that doesn’t fit I’ll make a note to go back and try to come up with something better or even decide to use two different words altogether. There’s another thing to do, if you feel your forcing a word try to think of another meaning for the word and go from there, it’s way better. I myself have been accused of forced rhyme before and it’s not a good feeling. Perhaps my word choices weren’t the best, perhaps it was because it was my first work but either way I have learned from the accusation and improved. I have come across a clear abuse of forcing rhyme and just odd sentencing when it comes to the band, Train.
Train’s one of those bands who you hear their songs, hear the beat, find yourself singing along to but have you ever really listened to Train lyrics? I thought it was just two of their songs but as I delved deeper I realized that not even their first big hit Drops of Jupiter was exempt from this. Now I am no Train fan by any means, I mean they’re okay but after coming across such bad lyrics in their songs I can’t help but wonder what goes through the mind of the lead singer or whoever writes their lyrics. I’m going to break down a few songs by Train to show you how either forced rhyme is used or the sentences are just really awkward and odd to the song.
The first song to look at it is Hey Soul Sister. While the song is their biggest hit it is also riddled with forced lyrics and odd sentencing.
Your lipstick stains
On the front lobe of my left side brains
-Is it clever? Yes but it’s also a poor choice of rhyme and rather corny. Also could be considered forced since the use of the (s) as plural to brain just so it rhymes with stains.
Your sweet moonbeam
The smell of you
In every single dream I dream
-Just what exactly is a moonbeam? What on a person is a moonbeam? Either I’m not familiar with the reference of the singer is reaching here and just using it to rhyme with the word dream. Beam and dream are good words to rhyme but I’m failing to see the connection here.
Hey, soul sister
Ain't that Mr. Mister
On the radio, stereo
The way you move ain't fair you know
-The chorus is probably the best case of forced rhyme and awkward sentencing. How many people even know who Mister Mister is? It isn’t clever it’s obviously forced because the singer wanted to rhyme Sister so he chose one of the few bands that goes with the word. It’s cheesy and clearly forced. The second line is no better as he needed to rhyme stereo so he goes with “fair you know”. It sort of fits but not really making it forced and odd.
I'm so obsessed
My heart is bound to beat right out
My untrimmed chest
-This would work but the word untrimmed isn’t really necessary it just makes the lyric cheesy and pointless but obsessed and chest do work in connection.
I believe in you, like a virgin you're Madonna
-The next lyric rhymes Madonna with wanna but that’s the least of my issue with this line. Is it a clever play on words? Sure but again to me it’s so corny and how exactly is the girl he’s talking about like Madonna? Madonna isn’t a virgin and while she wrote a song called Like A Virgin just how exactly does that make the girl like Madonna? Perhaps I’m looking way too into this but when I hear it I just cringe and wonder what he means.
Way you can cut a rug
Watching you's the only drug I need
You're so gangster, I'm so thug
You're the only one I'm dreaming of
-What the hell does cutting a rug mean? At first I thought it was the most ridiculous line yet but it is a thing. Cutting a rug was slang..in the 1940's! He uses a 40's saying to rhyme drug, this is beyond forced rhyme, he couldn’t think of another word to rhyme? Seems unlikely. Finally, to my knowledge the singer who wrote the song is a white male in his 40's and yet uses the lines, Your so gangster, I’m so thug you’re the only one I’m dream of..it’s so corny and bad. I just think it’s weird for a 40 yr old white man to use such odd words in a song just to rhyme one. It’s all just one big awkward mess.
If you like the song then hey that’s great but I just felt people needed to know just how weird this song was and how so many rules are broken here.
The next song is called Mermaid, not very known and doesn’t need to be after you hear some of these cheese infused lyrics.
Can’t swim so I took a boat
To an island so remote
Only Johnny Depp has ever been to it before
-Cause Johhny Depp played a pirate, it’s a pop culture reference. Yeah I get it but it’s not necessary, it’s corny. He couldn’t think of a real pirate? Blackbeard? Captain Morgan(was a real pirate and it would actually still work way better than Johnny Depp), Calico Jack? Sir Frances Drake? Anyone is better than what he put.
I offered you my coat
Thank goodness love can float
-Really? Yeah because love can float and you rhyme it with coat...
Beauty in the water
Angel on the beach
-The first two lines work but it falls apart with the third line. Poseidon’s daughter would work better, personal peeve I guess.
Rescued you by the banyan tree
All the girlfish in the sea
Couldn't hold a candle to you
They don’t have a handle on you
They don’t have a scandal on you
I love Ecco sandals on you
Saving me was b-i-g
All the boyfish in the sea
They all wish that they could be me
-Everything about this verse is cringe worthy. Rescued you by the banyan tree works it’s everything after that is just awful and uncreative. Girlfish? Why use that word why not use Mermaid or I don’t know anything else? Couldn’t hold a candle to you works but the use of handle, scandal and sandal’s is forcing rhyme to the fullest. Saving me was b-i-g? All the boyfish in the sea? They all wish that they could be me? Forced, cheesy and just ridiculous and lack of originality to make it work.
Next song is Drops of Jupiter. Now I’ll say that this is the least cringe worthy song as there’s some actual creativity in here but for every good lyric there are some that just leave me screaming and wondering why a famous singer sucks at coming up with good rhymes.
She checks out Mozart while she does Tae-Bo
Reminds me that there's room to grow
-Okay maybe she does but this just looks odd and awkward especially since the first lyrics of the song made sense and worked well.
Can you imagine no love, pride, deep-fried chicken
Your best friend always sticking up for you
-Maybe he’s trying to be funny but given the song had good space metaphors and he throws deep fried chicken into this just comes up short to be considered good or creative. Then again with sticking being in the next line it makes me wonder if the second line was thought of before the first.
Finally, the song Drive By gets looked over here and well..the same results.
Just a shy guy looking for a two-ply
Hefty bag to hold my love
When you move me everything is groovy
They don't like it sue me
Mmm the way you do me
-The first line is corny and forced rhyme and then okay hefty bag to hold his love clever..
When you move me everything is groovy..who uses the word groovy? It’s not the 60s, it’s just awkward wording again. Summed up with sue me, mmm the way you do me, forced rhymes as they don’t have to do with each other and mmm the way you do me could be taken many ways.
So as you can tell Train songs while they may sound all fun and upbeat have the lyrics of a dry sponge and may seem clever but seeing as the song tries to be serious and then uses an odd word to connect just shows the lack of connection. I’m sure many songs are guilty of this but for some reason Train sticks out to me as abusers of forced rhyme and cheesy lyrics so bad that I bet children could come up with better rhymes. When I was once accused of forced rhyme the person said I gave them a “Dr. Seuss headache” well that simply told me they didn’t appreciate Dr.Seuss. My point is, Train’s songs have potential but then they fall flat by getting the forced rhyme treatment. There’s a huge difference between being clever and forcing rhyme. So the next time you read a poem or song lyrics really take a look at them because they may be more forced and out of bounds than you think.
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|Posted on March 12, 2018 at 5:45 PM||comments (0)|
Who is the best poet of all time? Well the answer may differ depending on who you ask. There have been so many tremendous poets in history and the best thing of all is that they are still being talked about and read today. While many people have their own opinion on who the best poet is I have devised my own list. Here are my top ten best poets.
10. Ralph Waldo Emerson
Known for transcendentalism and his poem “Nature” which is an absolute work of pure beauty, Emerson’s soft spoken yet crisp original words place him at the top of the list.
9. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Aside from being that poet dude with the big beard, Longfellow is also known for his poem, Paul Revere’s ride, The Song of Hiawatha and the first American to translate Dante’s Divine Comedy.
8. Lord Byron
Byron is one of those people who you’ve probably heard of but have no idea of how talented he was. He was during the Romantic movement and wrote many love poems including “She Walks in Beauty”.
7. John Keats
Keats was also a writer during the Romantic Movement and worte many love ballads and poems. While he died at age 25 of illness his poetry would go onto to be well received and popular long after his death.
6. Langston Hughes
A personal favorite of mine, Hughes was one of the best poets of his generation. His sometimes hidden or straight forward way with words or his simple 6 line poems Hughes was a quite a remarkable man and poet.
5. Robert Frost
“The Road Not Taken” in my opinion is not only a great poem but a great metaphor and inspiration for life. Frost is one of the best rhyming poets and really told a story in his poems.
4. Maya Angelou
Maya Angelou was one of the best modern poets of her generation. She was real, raw and sometimes controversial with her poems but they told of her life and others and they made an impact.
3. Emily Dickinson
Emily Dickinson may be one of the most popular and well known poets but in real life and during her life she was depressed and a bit of a recluse spending months upon months in her room. It’s no wonder her words are so strong and still known today.
2. Edgar Allan Poe
I know what your thinking, how is Poe only number 2 on a list of poets that I made? Well to be honest I wasn’t going to include him because of his horror and story writing but I cannot deny that Poe was a heck of a poet. His stories he told in poetic form and his dark tales are still loved by many.
1. William Shakespeare
A bit surprised are you? Shakespeare wrote sonnets, ballads, lyrical poems but he has to be number one because he created his own words, his own language and his own structure in poetry. To not put him at one would be blasphemous. Shakespeare wrote love poems, told dramatic stories and could spin even the most simple thing into a thing of beauty.
|Posted on March 12, 2018 at 5:45 PM||comments (0)|
Poetry, it’s sweet simplicity and originality is a writing form that people have been writing in for centuries. Poetry however is a genre that many either love or hate, some just love reading about the rhyme, the powerful words while others find it dreadful and just utterly boring. Back in the day poetry had a strong following and we still read or at least know of certain poems or quotes that have stood the test of time. Poetry today is not as popular, take it from someone who knows. As someone who writes poetry frequently and has 3 books of poems I can tell you that the market and need for poetry is certainly not in demand. Sure, like many things and genres poetry has a market it’s just not as mainstream as a poet would like which means poetry is hard to sell, perhaps a lot more hard to sell than I’m willing to admit. You work and you write but you find that at the end of the day that it’s far easier to write poetry than it is to sell it. Shakespeare, Poe, Emerson, Frost and Lord Byron may not have had to worry about selling their work but for a modern poet the times are tough and it’s not hard to see that poetry is hard to sell.
So why is poetry hard to sell aside from the main fact that it’s not as popular? Well there are a few reasons but let’s start with the second main one, other genres. With horror at an all time high, young adult romance trending and even erotica being written poetry seems to take a back seat or rides the caboose when it comes to being a popular bought genre. Science Fiction is a genre people have been reading a lot of as well. There’s just so many genres out there and so many new ones that in a world where people have short attention spans you’d think that’d enjoy something short and sweet but in reality that short attention span comes with wanting new things and many feel poetry has already been here or been here done that. Sure it can also be viewed as a you don’t know until you try but again as someone who writes poetry I can tell you right now I’d rather appeal to poetry lovers than try to convince someone to like it. Your books and your writing are not going to appeal to everyone and while you could try to convince someone every once in a while you should always appeal to your audience especially with poetry because it’s the only fan base you have.
Poetry has become more of something people do in their down time. They want to express themselves, they write a poem; it’s just something they do every once in a while but how many people today strive off making a career out of poetry? Yes, there’s poets out there I’m aware but my point is that you really have to be creative and really stand out from the crowd in order to sell it. One poet who has no trouble selling her poetry is Rupi Kaur. She’s an Indian poet who sells roughly around 300-500 copies a month. Her poetry looks to be more on the inspirational and current events side so it’s no wonder why her work resonates so well and grabs the attention of readers. So if a poet wants to know how to sell their poetry they should see what Rupi Kaur is doing and try it out and apply it to their marketing and see how they fair. A writer can try selling their poetry just like others do in selling their genres but they should also be ready for disappointment as some things just may not translate to poetry like they do for other genres. I will say this, while I am someone who has yet to find gold in selling my poetry I am continuing to look for poetry lovers, a poetry audience, that small niche group of people whom my work will appeal to. So keep looking and reach your audience by sticking to readers of poetry, perhaps maybe then poetry will pick up and sell.
|Posted on February 26, 2018 at 2:00 PM||comments (0)|
When we think horror poetry we think of Edgar Allan Poe and perhaps even his most infamous poem, The Raven. We think of all his other poetic horror verses and think no one else can eclipse this. However aside from Poe who else write horror poetry? Well aside from Poe and myself I cannot definitively think of someone else that comes to mind that could be considered a horror poet. Sure there’s A Season in Hell by Arthur Rimbaud but that he was a one hit wonder and never wrote again and I’m not even sure he meant to write it as a poem but merely expressed his adolescent frustrations in exaggerated form. Then of course there’s Dante’s Inferno but that’s more of a glorified story of myth.
So seeing as there isn’t any other true horror poets to name let’s go with the next best thing, poems of horror by other poets. Poets who write about life, nature, feelings you know the things you normally write a poem about? Well perhaps some of the poets who write these are your favorite and you didn’t even know they had a horror or dark poem. Here are some poems who have stepped into the dark side to write horror poetry.
The Dance of Death
by Charles Baudelaire
https://www.poetrysoup.com/famous/poem/the_dance_of_death_19570" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">https://www.poetrysoup.com/famous/poem/the_dance_of_death_19570
The poem is a gothic and macabre poem about a subtle take on death. Baudelarie was a French poet who wrote prose poetry and while he didn’t always write dark poetry he was a translator of Edgar Allan Poe works. This poem of his is one of his own original takes on horror poetry.
by Siegfried Sassoon
https://www.poetrysoup.com/famous/poem/haunted_178" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">https://www.poetrysoup.com/famous/poem/haunted_178
The creepy and chilling poem that tells of a man being haunted and his paranoia gets the best of him. Sassoon was a former solider who wrote about the horrors of war. This poem is a different approach to the normal types of horror he writes.
Because I Could Not Stop For Death
by Emily Dickinson
A poem that while not exactly considered to be horror still talks about and mentions death in a more everyday type fashion. Emily Dickinson was known for her contemporary poetry and at times wrote depression poems of someone in isolation. This poem is one of a few where Dickinson talks about death.
by Robert Frost
Ghost House is a somber and chilling tale of a house and it’s many dark sights. Robert Frost is known for many types of poems but horror poetry is not one of them. However, Frost totally pulls it off with this whimsical light horror poem.
by Louis Erdrich
https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/43086/windigo" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/43086/windigo
A tale about the flesh eating Algonquin monster. Louis Erdrich needs only a few stanzas to get you so freaked out that you start asking yourself if Wendigos really exist. As someone who enjoys the myth of Wendigoes I found this poem to be a treat..no pun intended.
So as you can tell you don’t need to be a writer of the horror genre to write horror or scary poems. Some well known and not so known poets have written some absolute gems of poems that both scare, excite and reading get a reader to think. Poetry has no rules so if your not a writer of horror or heck even if your not a poet but have a horrific story to tell in poetic form then do what these poets did, take a page out of someone else’s book and get writing.
|Posted on February 5, 2018 at 4:35 PM||comments (0)|
Edgar Allan Poe, you’ve likely heard of him and whether you’re a fan of his work or not you cannot dent the impact he has left on the horror, short story and poetry culture. However not many people are aware that Poe was not all that popular in his day, in fact his writing was highly and publicly criticized and he was a bit of an outcast. He tried and tried day in and day out to get his works published and sometimes even that was not all that easy to do. Between trying to get published and getting the public to like his work Poe had quite the work to do after writing it. Many authors today complain about getting their work out and marketing but perhaps never truly know the struggle it was for Edgar Allan Poe. On top of all that, his life was also troubled and he was a heavy drinker which was partly the reason his works were so dark and disturbing. Poe was somewhat popular and had a following in his day but was more widely regarded as a success after his death and still today but to me it has raised a big question, what if Poe lived in this era? What if one of the greatest horror writers of all time lived during the time where the public still scrutinizes writers, social media exists helping criticism in volumes but horror is extremely popular?
First, let’s delve a little deeper into that last point. Poe would still be criticized but more likely for how he wrote not necessarily what he wrote. As I said, horror is very popular and he’d probably be as popular as Stephen King if not more popular. Poe would likely sell tons of books, would get tons of publishing deals and be a huge figure in today’s society. I mean just imagine Poe eating one of his haters alive on Facebook or Twitter by humiliating them by writing his comeback in an epic 240 character poem. Did Poe care what people thought of him and his work when he was alive? I’m sure he did but given how motivated he’d be today I’d like to think he’d care way less and let hi writing do the talking. If Poe were alive today horror poetry would be huge and we’d look to him even more for inspiration and help within the genre. Instead we try to eclipse him on Amazon on the top ten of poetry books feeling that if he were still alive and in the top 10 it wouldn’t feel as though we were being beaten by someone who isn’t around to enjoy the success. I’d like to think Poe would be humble, friendly and approachable and he wouldn’t let success go to his head but he’d use it to drive him further to write brilliant pieces of work and even help out his fellow horror poets like myself.
However, for every good idea we must weigh the bad as well. Would the success, stress, fame and public scrutiny get to him? If none of these did then surely his personal and private life would have if it followed him in this era. Between his wife, personal issues and drinking perhaps like many writers after him he would just like it all to end but then again who truly knows as I am merely telling you to consider the idea. It’s better to think of the positive aspect but given we are talking about the morbid man of macabre we simply have to talk about the dark troubling negativity that surrounded him. Speaking of morbid and dark I would also think that today as a society we tend to not only be more open to horror then in Poe’s day but we enjoy even darker and disturbing stuff. Which asks the question, wouldn’t Poe be even darker in his writing today then he was in his day? Imagine how the Raven could be written if it was written today. Instead of Once upon a midnight dreary, we could see something along the lines of “Death pecked away on the darkest of nights making a man look more and more decayed. The point here is that if Poe were alive today he could have been even more deranged and disturbed in his writing which is hard to imagine seeing as he’s the king of macabre now for things he wrote way back when,
Edgar Allan Poe in many ways was a man before his time, a man born in the wrong era, a man who looked at the world as a long dark alleyway longing to be explored and analyzed even if it meant others would scorn him and let him have it. Yet without him people like me may not have been inspired to write and if not Poe then who? Who back then would have dawned the macabre mantle to inspire us horror writers nearly 200 years later? Well luckily we don’t have to wonder because our king and inspiration into the dark world of literature is Poe but if he were alive today, it makes you wonder, oh how it makes us wonder.
Want more Poe? Check out my board on Pinterest, https://www.pinterest.com/justinbienvenue/all-things-poe-nevermore/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">All Things Poe, Nevermore!
|Posted on February 5, 2018 at 3:50 PM||comments (0)|
Horror is undoubtedly one of the most popular genres in today’s literature. There are countless writers who strive to create that next big horror novel or script that next big horror movie. However the same cannot be said for the genre of poetry, while does have a following and many writers of it, is not nearly as big as it once was. To further make poets feel obscure if you’re a horror poet in today’s world you feel a bit alone because there’s not many of us and aside from Edgar Allan Poe what horror poets do we have to look up to? What of the other horror poets?
Horror poetry does exist but most people would say it’s quite an odd pairing or that the prestige just isn’t there. When you think horror poetry you think Edgar Allan Poe but who are some other horror poets? I’m not talking about horror writers because that list goes on and on but when it comes to horror poets well..the list of people just isn’t there. Sure there’s likely many horror poets and indie poets today but if we go back ten, twenty years or even back to Poes days who are some other horror poets? There really isn’t any or at least not to my findings.
I typed in horror poets on Google and as expected Edgar Allan Poe came up first but after that a bunch of other poets came up some well known but none strickly considered to be horror poets, some just listed because Google saw the word “poet” and just assumed. I looked and I looked but I could not find any other horror poets besides Poe. I saw a few names such as Siegfried Sassoon, Emily Dickinson, H.P Lovecraft and Lewis Caroll. Sassoon was more of a writer of the horrors of war and wrote war poems, Dickinson was more of a writer of depression, Lovecraft wrote science fiction and Carroll was more known for Alice in Wonderland and other stories than anything. So this drew me to one big conclusion, these authors either wrote poetry that has small undertones of horror but isn’t considered horror or at one point in time they wrote a horror poem but that doesn’t y any means qualify them as being considered horror poets. Can you write in one genre and still make an impact in another? Of course and the same case can be made for poets who write the occasional horror poem.
So what does this all mean? That’s not clear. Are there other horror poets? I’m sure there is but my search as deep as it was just simply didn’t turn up any other names strong enough to connect to the horror poetry genre. I am positive that there’s other horror poets out there from back in the day just like I know for a fact that there’s writer of horror poetry today. The one thing I can take from this is that there are horror poems from poets who didn’t write in the horror genre. They decided to test the waters and take a stab(no pun intended) at the genre. In another article I will talk about some of those poems by poets and analyze them as to what they meant at the time and what they mean to poets and readers today. Poe may have been alone in his own little world after all when he wrote all those dark and dreary poems but years later I don’t think I am alone. I have Poe and I’m sure I have other horror poets within the genre to look up to and become inspired by, to explore and discover. Poetry is not dead and neither is horror poetry.
|Posted on October 7, 2015 at 3:25 PM||comments (0)|
In honor of today being 166 years since his mysterious death I thought I'd share a post I wrote a few years back to the father of Gothic and Macabre Poetry.
Edgar Allen Poe was quite the poet of his time. He brought the element of horror to poetry and it took off in such a way that hundreds of years later,we still read his work today and it’s still just as good as the day he wrote so long ago. He wrote many poems and short stories of the macabre and because the basis of the horror culture has taken off so much this century that it’s why we welcome him and his greatness to this one. His work of horror was really the first of it’s time, well the first that really became popular that is. Poe inspired not just many writers after him but also more than likely the things in horror today that we have come to love so much. In fact recently works of Poe have been made into a movie which just goes to show you that the old things and new things come together and are just as good as everything else that makes it so.
Many of the poems in The Macabre Masterpiece and many of my other dark poems are all inspired by Poe. He not only stands the test of time but continues to inspire many young writers and poets like myself proving that it doesn't matter how long you've been gone, as long as your works are still very much alive you shall continue to be alive in a sense as well.
|Posted on September 11, 2015 at 3:50 PM||comments (0)|
There are many things within the book to which people may know or have had an idea about. However as I am about to share, there are 10 things that you probably didn't know about the book. With that being said here they are:
10. The title was a Last minute idea
When you hear the title of the book you would think it was the first choice I came up with but the truth is it was the last. I had originally come up with titles such as The Mixed Book of Poetry, Mixed Book of Goodies and a lot of other less than catchy names, when I thought of Like A Box of Chocolates I realized it was perfect and very fitting.
9. Adrenaline Rush’s last line was changed
The second to last line in the poem within the book now reads “But now the body has become total mush” but it didn’t always read like that. Originally the line referenced the use of drugs in the form of using a needle but seeing as this was a bit extreme and there was already a few drug references in the book it made it easy for this to get dropped.
8. Rhyme scheme of Silverdust
Usually when poems rhyme they are known for either 1,1 2,2 or 1,2,1,2 however in the case of Silverdust a much different rhyme scheme is seen. The first word to start a new sentence in each line is rhymed with the last line of the following sentence and the last word in the first sentence is rhymed with the first word in the second sentence. Confusing I know but if you give it a read you’ll see what I mean. I thought of this while writing it.
7. Frozen Fire was altered a lot
I’ll admit Frozen Fire isn’t exactly the best poem in the book but compared to what it originally was it’s definitely a lot better. The original poem had weak rhymes and some of the lines either didn’t make sense or were misused homonyms. It was fixed up a bit and the last two lines were always there..your welcome.
6. The Prophet was a last minute add
As I explained in the Preface most of the poems titles were thought of by having people vote however toward the end some of them were poems I already had or just ended up writing. The prophet was one of the last poems I added. I also broke it into two sentence formats for a better feel.
5. The Immortal is about Vandal Savage
In the poem The Immortal, it doesn’t just tell of a random or completely made up character but is about the comic book villain Vandal Savage. While most would write about vampires when speaking of Immortals I decided to take a different approach and wrote about the less known comic book villain.
4. The Chemist and Killer Instinct share an Era
The Chemist in many ways is my version of Dr. Jeykll and Mr. Hyde and Killer Instinct is about Jack the Ripper. What’s interesting and on accident is that I put them both same pages back to back and Dr.Jeykll and Mr. Hyde was written in 1886 and Jack the Ripper began his killing spree in 1888, meaning they share a two year difference but are connected in the sense they are in the same era.
3. I consider Razorblades and Revolutions and Amongst the Shadows to be the two best poems in the book
Not to toot my own horn by any means but I believe these two to be the two best poems in the book for several reasons. For one I felt the rhyme scheme was very powerful and the lines all flow quite nicely. I feel the poems meanings are very deep and a lot more meaningful and really make you feel like an intricate story is being told. I put a lot of work into them and I feel they really shine off the pages.
2. There are several conspiracies within the book
One thing that makes the book interesting aside from it’s variety of poems and oddness is the several conspiracies within a few of the poems. I could tell you some of them but then where would be the fun in that? Just know that there are a few and read the book for yourself and see if you can pick them out.
1. The meaning behind the cover
When you see the cover I’m sure your asking what does it all mean? At first glance we see four characters in a bed and wonder why. Well not only do they all have meanings but it does past that as well. The man in the top hat is a Mortician and represents the poem The Mortuary, the skeleton for Skeleton Sex, the train conductor for Ghost Train, the Gorilla in a nightcap for Terminal Rage and the ninja ontop of the bed for Amongst the Shadows. The bed itself represents the poem Velvet Awakening and the fact it’s in space represents Starlight Express.
The bird and the clock on the back represent Upon the Strike of Midnight and the clocks weird morphed look is a reference to Salvador Dali’s work and is meant to represent Deadly by Design which talks about LSD.
|Posted on February 24, 2015 at 11:15 PM||comments (0)|
10 Interesting Facts about The Macabre Masterpiece
10. Rage of Hades wasn’t originally a Horror Poem
If you read “Rage of Hades” you immediately think wow this is gruesome and brutally honest horror from the lips of the Lord of the Underworld. Truth be told, it was never a horror poem. In fact it was a poem I wrote apparently when I was in a bit of rage myself and quite steamed. As I was going over poems I came across this and decided to add it in because if it’s sheer talk of brutality. I then gave it a title and the Rage of Hades as born.
9. “Vampires” was nominated for the 2005 Poem of the Year
This is something I don’t normally ever mention. While I was in high school was when I started writing poetry. During that time I wrote the poem called “Vampires”. I cam across a poetry contest in a magazine to which I submitted the poem. While it was nominated it didn’t win but they made me feel like a winner as I have a plague of the poem hanging up on my wall in my living room.
8. The title of the book came to me while sitting at my kitchen table
Believe it or not I had all fifty poems written with no title. As I sat at my kitchen table examining the paper that had all the names of the poems I asked myself what they had in common, which was horror. Even more so they shared something else, elements of Poe and then Macabre popped into my head and then from there Masterpiece found it’s way in and as I put them together, The Macabre Masterpiece was the title I decided on.
7. The Grim Reaper was not originally a horror poem
Another poem that wasn’t originally intended to be a horror poem in fact it never even had a title. However like Rage of Hades as I read over my pile of poems I came across this. I showed it to my father and he said it sounded like The Grim Reaper unsure of what to do with his new found title and powers. I read it over a few times before I saw what he saw. I then decided it fit the criteria and gave it the title The Grim Reaper.
6. There’s actually more Vampire poems then just the 4 in the book
Believe it or not as of right now there are seven parts to the Vampire series. I never included part 5 because I couldn’t find it kind of like part two(long story). Six and seven were recently written. Perhaps I’ll post them to my site some day for people to read.
5. The current edition is actually the 2nd edition
It’s no secret that I originally went with PublishAmerica to have the book published. What’s also no secret in the writing and publishing world is of how bad they are. Having been in a dispute with them over pretty much everything I finally got out of my contract with them in 2012. I had the cover re-done and the book edited before re-releasing it with Createspace.
4. There is a reference to “Macbeth” in “The River of Blood” poems
This is a fun fact that many may not have known. In the poem “River of Blood” there is a line which reads “In this river your hands will not be washed clean” this is a reference to Lady Macbeth washing her hands constantly as she sees blood on her hands when in reality her hands are clean but she merely feels guilty having committed a sinful act. It is again seen at the end of the poem with the ending line “Wash thy hands in the river of blood” and returns a third time in “The River of Blood pt.3" with the line “It’s time once again for the annual flood and for thou to wash thy hands in the river of blood”. Not only does Edgar Allan Poes work show up in this book but now you know Shakespeare’s does too.
3. The poem “The Screaming of Bloody Murder” was originally called Clue based off the popular board game
If you read the poem you sort of get the feel that it’s like one of those things where you can go stay and reenact a murder, if your really good with detail you’ll feel as though it sounds like the game Clue..well that’s because that was the original idea. I decided against it because I felt it was kind of corny and I wanted the poem to scare and not make people laugh. The last which reads “upon the cries and screaming of bloody murder” originally read “It was Colonel Mustard in the parlor with a wrench” ...I know I know, I should have kept it right?
2. I rhymed the word orange in “The River of Blood pt.3"
The River of Blood pt. 3 shows up on the list once again but this time for a reason far greater and actually has to do with the color to which Lady Macbeths hands are upon washing them a few times. The line reads” Yeah that river number one blood supplier and storage” to which I make the infamous rhyme of “turning the skin red, the mind a clockwork orange” Honestly I never realized how either absurd or impressive this was (whichever way you want to look at it). I don’t force rhyme but I liked storage and didn’t want to change it as I realized that orange sounded similar I couldn’t think of how to connect it, I thought of how blood is orange a few times after it’s washed but then A Clockwork Orange a book written in 1962 by Anthony Burgess and a film in 1971 by Stanley Kubrick stuck in my head. I knew it was a bizarre book and film so knowing just that I inserted it into the poem and not only did it fit and make sense, but the rest is history.
1. The original draft of the poem “Slaughterhouse” was far more graphic and gross then whats in the book
I liked to think that this would be a great rumor that I could have had going if I had gotten the word out about it. I could hear people saying, “They say he wrote an even more disturbing version”. However, I am confirming and telling you right now, that yes, the original verison was a lot different and much more graphic. So why didn’t I keep it? Why did I change it and keep the version you all can read in the book now? To be totally honest I was afraid of offending people. Don’t get me wrong I’m not afraid of shocking people in fact I’m sure some lines within other poems in the book are borderline offensive in some way but the intention of the original Slaughterhouse was just as it states in the poem, raw, unnerved, and disturbing. One example of this would be with the line, “Body parts of gutted people and animals desecrated and raw”. The original line went into detail about how the people were mutilated along with the animals as well. Not wanting to make people sick and not wanting to have PETA on my case I decided to tone it down and go into another direction. There was also a line that mentioned something about eating a filthy welcome mat and washing it down with a cold glass of blood fresh from the stomach of..you see I’ve already said too much. So that’s why we have the version that’s in the book. Will I ever let the public read the unedited, unreleased version? Ehh I don’t know, I think it might be too much...
|Posted on February 14, 2015 at 4:20 PM||comments (0)|
Poetry. We all know what it is and we either love it or hate it, read it or write it and perhaps a little bit of all of them together. There are many types of poetry as well. There's rhyming, freestyle, prose, free verse just to name a few. But what is Genre Poetry? Well a simple google search won't help, I've checked. I know I didn't coin the term but let me tell you what it is. Genre poetry is a collection of poetry written about topics within any type of genre from love and science fiction to horror and action. Basically you write a poem about any topic that falls within a certain type of genre. Perhaps there is another word for it but I like the term genre poetry because it's calling it what it is. Anyone who knows me knows I enjoy writing poetry. Not only that but I enjoy writing and can write a poem about pretty much anything( that's appropriate and within reason although if i feel bold or feel the need can goo beyond expectation). I am by no means tooting my own horn( toot, toot!) I am merely saying that I enjoy writing poetry by expanding it to more then just my feelings. I like giving poetry a purpose, a theme and making something that isn't normally written as poetry. A science fiction poem for example doesn't mean write a poem about space or aliens it means the same thing as if you were going to write a science fiction novel, take the elements of it and create a poem from it. I have several poems in my book Like A Box of Chocolates that are Science Fiction based such as Starlight Express which is about the two cliches I mentioned to which Science Fiction isn't all about(I know I'm such a great exmaple to go by) and The Chemist which is my spin on the classic tale of Dr.Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
The idea behind my book was simple, I knew I had a bunch of poems written within many different genres so I wanted to put them all together to create a sole book of poems. Genre poetry by my opinion is a group of poems and not necessarily one individual poem although if you could write one poem and combine several different genres that works too and in fact I'm sure I've done this at some point. Another key about genre poetry is it's like poetry itself as a whole in the sense that the idea's are endless and you can go out and really express yourself. There are no limits in poetry and with genre poetry it's no different but in fact may be more experimental in some ways. We all know when it comes to poetry their are many tools and these tools should not be abandoned when it comes to genre poetry they should be used because it's just like writing any other poem. It seems like I'm sugar coating it by giving genre poetry a name when in reality it's really just a regular poem within a theme and genre poetry is the category to which it happens to fall under. To give you more of an idea of some of the poetry I write and within Like A Box of Chocolates here are some titles and explanations of some of the workin within it. The opening poem Shattered Dreams is hard to categorize as it doesn't fit a specific literary genre but if anything falls under overcoming struggles. The poem talks about the ups and downs a person at times faces. Another poem is called Brutal Mentality which again doesn't really fall under any literary genres. This poem tells of how sometimes people treat us badly or assume the worst of us but it is they who are in the wrong and us as victims.
In conclusion to this post I would like people to know that there is no limits to what is and what isn't poetry. It doesn't have to be from the heart, about your feelings or about something sad that happened to you like heartbreak, although those can make for some really good poems! Write what you see, what's on your mind, write what's around you and what's within you. Take a less the talked about topic and write a poem of it or goe way beyond the normal and write about something no one would ever think in a million years could be a poem. I once wrote a poem about dirty pennies called Dirty Penny Laundrerer's, where did it come from? I haven't the faintest idea but I sat down started writing and just went with it. It is these things and these self made challenges, and simple ideas that make up genre poetry. If you have a collection of poetry that you want people to know about but your unsure of how to put it together make it a mixed book of goodies, make it genre poetry. Make people not know what they're going to get
|Posted on January 20, 2015 at 3:15 PM||comments (0)|
A way of writing, a way of expression, a style in which words come about on a paper in such a way that they create a visual image or flow of feelings. Poetry is rhythm without a beat, music without a note, emotion in every sense shape and form. For some it is either a way of expressing ones feelings or to tell a story but no matter how it is written or what is being said it is what it is because the writer makes it so.
Poetry is like art, some see beyond what’s really shown, what’s behind the surface of being told. They see the inner meaning and sometimes take the outer meaning as a silhouette or shell of what the real point is that’s trying to be made. One does not need to be creative or imaginative but there needs to be a sense of emotion and sense of drive to write but it is because of all these things that truly make poetry a whole. Own feelings and experiences make up for more then half of all poems, that’s an estimate but needs to not be proven because of the simple fact that it is irrelevant as to whether or not the writer truly put something of their own into it because if the words speak to the reader then it does not matter if the poet lived it or not.
Poetry is inspiration, interpretation and representation. One can feel inspired and write about what they see, however, like mentioned prior to what the poet writes about and what the reader takes can be two completely different ideas, and neither are wrong because the poem in itself is being represented. Poetry has stood the test of time because there will always be people who have something to say and there will always be people who are willing to read and listen. Whether it be seven syllables in a three sentence structure, a fourteen line sonnet or non rhyme free verse there are so many different ways in which poetry can be written.
Poetry doesn’t seem as popular as it once was in the sense as it’s not out there in your face. Back in the days of Shakespeare; poets were well known and loved by many and poetry was almost a way of life ,a culture if you will. It was an era in which people relied and yearned for it, it wasn’t just about expression but something to be looked forward to and appreciated in every way. It was a movement and generated many followers and inspired many poets alike to come together and just express themselves.
These were the days when the minute the ink feathered pens hit the paper something truly remarkable was going to be written to be enjoyed by so many people. After Shakespeare there was still famous poets coming about and writing. Keats, Longfellow, Frost, Lord Byron, Emily Dickinson just to name a few. These poets all stand the test of time because of what they felt and what they wrote but now it somehow seems as though we have lost touch with that.
Today it’s like poetry has become an underground society or if it is there it’s shy and not as popular and renowned as it once was. It’s not that poetry isn’t being written cause it is but it just seems like there aren’t anymore famous or popular poets like back in the day making it so well respected. It’s like its become a small group of only certain people who know its there and truly appreciate it. I once said “If poetry is dead then I wish to bring it back” I said this because I felt as though a part of poetry has died and it needs someone to come out and make it alive again.
It could be taken many ways or be as simple as this, poetry like many things has always been here but just doesn’t have the drive that it once did. However, I don't believe it will become extinct, not by any means. I just think it needs a little push, a spark to ignite it and get it going again. Overall though one thing should be taken about the last statement, poetry will never die as long as there are writers who pour their hearts out to write it and as long as there is an audience.