Big Rowan Ackison (greensh) wrote,
Big Rowan Ackison

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The Paradox of Poetry

A musician friend of wrote about the power and challenge of creating lyrics. I believe their comments apply to poetry as well. They said that writing songs keeps an artist honest. Emotions are revealed and beliefs are presented. They said that sometimes songs have to wait their time until the song writer is healed enough to pursue the material. So true. I have a few more things to add my friend's words.

Lyrics (and poetry) have a paradoxical property. They can share much and they can hide much. I've had the impression that a cleverly written poem to “hide” the true face of my subject. My friend calls out this belief. Yes, I can write a poem about a seemingly fictional person, but the manifestation of anybody and anything in my poetry is a reflection on me and my life. Shoot, even a fun “nonsense” poem can say much about where my imaginative mind goes. Thy lyricist or poet may be saying something about the big world, but know that they are bravely sharing a private part of themselves.

There is an interesting flip side to this, I am finding that the veiling property of poetry allows me emotionally reveal myself in areas that I don't yet feel comfortable dialoguing in writing. Why is that? The veil of poetry is one of plausible deniability. You see my thoughts, you suspect the emotions behind them, and I still have an out. “It was an imaginative prattle” I can say. Do you think a poem is speaking of yourself or a person you know? Perhaps. Perhaps not. The Carly Simon's memorable lyrics say it all, “you probably think this song is about you”. Could be, could not be. I am just glad to share more safely.

My friend was right. There are some poems I cannot yet write. I have a many day journey ahead of me with lots of opportunity to put emotions and relationships on paper. I can veil them in ways that allow me to speak in riddles while showing too much of my soul. The power of daily practice meets the mysticism of words. I love it.
Tags: paradox, poetry, revelation

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