Prompted poetry: short

I have a hard time convincing some folks that modern poetry is not necessarily biographical, and that good poetry manages to be personal even when it is fictional. This is a moment of imaginary conversation between imaginary people in an imaginary coffee shop.

Tall decaf mocha latte

I’m feeling a little short,
he said. Of what? I asked
absently and sipped coffee
still too hot to drink. Of time, money,
inspiration, he said, flinging
hands in the air. Of stature,
he added as he dropped them
in his lap. I eyed him over
the steaming brim. Of stature,
I echoed. Metaphorically speaking,
he answered, shoulders slumped.

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3 responses to “Prompted poetry: short

  1. Modern poetry is not so different from poetry. Poets ancient and modern have an uncanny ability to feed on personal experience in order to craft the mythopoetic rudiments of their lives’ stories. And the best poets (in my opinion) choose to delve so deeply into the subjective essence of their own experience that they burst through into an unexpected objectivity, and so touch the common human experience. In this way, the best poets speak not only in their own inimitable voice but (impossibly!) in the voice of every reader that meets their poems. The best poets tell the story of all our lives. So, all poetry is biographical, though all poetry is a kind of fiction (maybe, as Stevens suggests, the supreme fiction.) But all poetry, ancient or modern, is true. And that’s all anyone needs to know. So don’t spend any more time convincing folks that poetry isn’t something, or manages to be two things at once. Poetry is everything. Maybe just take them out for coffee instead.

  2. Loved this poem. That’s all. 🙂

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