Mystery in Poetry

September 15, 2014

church

 

I go back and forth on what good poetry is. I prefer story-telling over one or two words on each line, most often flowing down into a long kite tail of mystery. Mystery poetry is speaking in short word lines, only the writer knows what they meant. I’ve gone and made my self believe we need full sentences to make sense.

I’ve also learned, taught myself, that poetry is better if nibbled, take a breathe in between bites, nibble some more, and then digest it over time, it has helped. Sure, I heard it from others, more experienced poets, MFA poets, and well respected performance poets who just happen to have been Laureates and won awards. It really does work, like reading your work after you write it, to check for errors and sense.

Here is a mystery poem draft for you…

If You Can’t Take The Heat

get on off the your high horse,
and let ’er ride.
Most days, I’m on a spit.
Aren’t we all?
Rip roarin’, shoved up my…,
and yes, it hurts, a lot.
There’s no testin’ it before hand;

no higher power roped the wrong steed,
it’s just a ride, a long damned one at that.
How I ended up in the driver’s seat,
beats the heck outta me;

I liked it better in 1966,
when I sat behind Daddy.
He knew where he was goin’,
he most likely knew a destination,
and if anything looked good
before we arrived, we’d stop.
It was more of a feelin’,
and an ‘it’s all good’ experience.

Now-a-days nothin’ makes sense.
The ridin’, the ropin’, the meat—
of it all.
I tried to guide my own son,
show him the way of the land,
a few rules of respect,
and shortcuts, which we all use.
But he does it his own way.
My Son, he’s the driver now.

Most of us only have
a one way ticket—outta here.
No one asked for it;
it was waitin’ when we arrived,
when you woke up from the thrill.
I’m just happy I got to witness
the riders before,
the riders after,
and now I’m callin’ shotgun.

Mystery, or no mystery, most will get the meaning, or make it their own. That’s what goes into poetry, what’s inside of us. When we read poetry, we make it our own. If we don’t get it, then it’s still a strangers words, and that’s okay too.

What the heck am I doing here? Who knows, who cares, sometimes we just like the sound of our own voice…now that’s poetry!

What’s mystery poetry mean to you? Let us into your head, now that you got into mine…

EAS

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