Tonight poetry is on my mind. I recently read a quote from Muriel Rukeyser… “Breathe in experience, breathe out poetry.” LOVE IT. It absolutely encompasses what poetry is for me and I’m sure for many others. Poetry is just such an immensely gratifying art. Yes. There I said it. Poetry is an art. When it comes to you and graces you with its presence, it is as fluid as playing the piano, singing a song, or a brush stroke on a canvas. Poetry is love, it is life, it is as intimate an expression of yourself as you can give to others if it comes from your heart and your soul.
For me, experience is the driving force behind poetry. Everything I write comes from deep inside of me and the emotions are so raw and true that what I write is generally totally focused on those feelings, and those feelings are spawned from experiences. Life experiences are what form us and season us.
Expression. It doesn’t take a lot to “express”. A smile expresses. A tear expresses. A hug expresses. I think a single word can express too, in place of many words, and often times a word can express so much more vividly and accurately than if you rambled on and on. When I write poetry I sometimes get excited to see where it leads because I don’t know the direction when I start. I write out my feelings while the poem takes on a shape and style of its own. I just listen. I listen very closely and I allow myself to feel whatever it is that’s inside of me. Sometimes it’s dark and sometimes it’s comforting.
Sometimes I am just overwhelmed with different emotions and when I start to write them out, they suddenly make sense. I can tap into a place that has so much depth to it. A lot of times what I will do is just sit quietly with my eyes closed. I let myself just go inside to my core. I don’t know how to describe it except that I just feel and listen to the emotions. They speak to me in descriptors, and writing them out and giving them form, releases the emotions for me. I know sometimes my poetry is darker, but with all of the events of these last few months, I expect it. I have a lot to work through. I’m just so grateful for the ability to embrace this outlet.
I know a lot of people aren’t fond of poetry, but it might help to understand that it’s just me, speaking to them in a way that is very personal and fragile in its honesty. It requires…demands… an immense amount of trust on my end, because I am sharing the most intimate parts of myself. I know that poetry sometimes seems veiled, but I think that is where the soul necessarily still protects what is vulnerable.