Once, poets were magicians. Poets were strong, stronger than warriors or kings — stronger than old hapless gods. And they will be strong once again.
― Greg Bear
I started writing poetry around the end of 2017. At first, they were really long and told a story and were very personal. To me, it was merely a way to keep my diary updated. So, my initial poems were intended as quick diary entries. I also started with dark poetry, a few of which I had on my blog (I took them down last year) because, they weren’t very positive reads.
Poetry became a more serious undertaking in the summer of 2020, a few months after quarantine was imposed on us. I started writing poems daily on a poetry app where I met and learnt from so many amazing poets! But it wasn’t a healthy platform and I left over 2 months later. But I had met some exceptional poets, learnt so much and I had also developed a distinct-ish style of my own.
A poet should be so crafty with words that he is envied even for his pains.
― Criss Jami, Killosophy
Moving over to my “process”, I write poems for two reasons:
(1) When I’m feeling something very strongly. These are my favourite times, because the poem writes itself. They’re not great but writing them down is mentally rewarding.
(2) When I just feel like writing something, such periods usually produce prose or poetry.
I mostly sit outside to write but if it’s like 2am or something, I jot it down somewhere. I usually just start with a line like ‘...and dare to dream a dream anew‘ and then work around it or towards it. I usually don’t have to think long to get a line, they pop up in the oddest of hours.
Once I write, say a 200 word poem, I then proceed to check if it makes sense together, edit the grammar, sometimes exchange words with synonyms and finally give it a poetic form (if possible). I also try to make sure there’s some sort of takeaway from my poem, and it’s not just a meaningless read.
A poem begins as a lump in the throat, a sense of wrong, a homesickness, a lovesickness.
― Robert Frost
Once all the technicalities of writing are taken care of, I try to judge the imagery in my poem (if any), comparisons and finally make a note of the transition between moods and make necessary edits. Once I’m convinced there’s a theme, a takeaway, (hopefully) zero grammatical errors and presentable language, I move on.
Once I’m done with the writing part, I do the interpretation part. I evaluate the initial mood with which I started, the change in tone, towards the end, the metaphors(if any) and how it could come across.
And then I keep it aside, and continue to edit it everyday. If I’m very unsure of it, I ask Srisha, Maggie or Diamond for their thoughts on it and make necessary edits. They’ve been such supportive friends!
I usually take about less than an hour to write a poem, but they go through at least a week of editing before I post it here.
I’m still inclined towards dark poetry but choose not to publish them here, because I personally wouldn’t prefer them being shared. But I enjoy reading and writing dark poetry, in general, all the same.
For a better reason, I quote Joanna @ naturetails, a kind friend and an incredible blogger who writes educational posts,
…you should always write not for the shallow effect but for a positive, spirit-lifting, heart-touching one because you never know who is reading it. And this is the responsibility of the good writer.
This post was written in response to Joana @ Gigantic Thought Bubble’s question,
“I don’t know if you’ve written one before, but I wanna know how you write your poetry? Is there a process? 😊“
Thank you so very much, Joana!! I hope this answered it!
Even though my poems aren’t professional or necessarily poetic, what little beauty they possess, I owe to each and every writer whose works or books I’ve read. How I use my words and what I choose to convey are factors that I control but their ultimate execution and presentation are all products of reading and the valuable lessons I’ve learned from every piece.
To conclude my take on how I write Poetry, I would like to thank each and every writer here! The list would be too long to mention, but every poem or write-up I read is always a wonderful experience and I’ve learnt so much from every single person’s distinct writing style. From the poetic terminologies to plain, rich imagination, this precious community has it all and I’m so grateful to be a part of it.
Resist much, obey little.
― Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass
-Introverted Thoughts aka D