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The Nature of Poetry

The nature of poetry is always problematic and mysterious. Poets, readers, critics, and scholars define poetry based on their own definitions. However, the common conception that is used to refer to the poetry is that, form of literature, spoken or written, that emphasizes rhythm, other intricate patterns of sound and imagery, and the many possible ways that words can suggest meaning. The word itself derives from a Greek word, poesis, meaning “making” or “creating.” Whereas ordinary speech and writing, called prose, are organized in sentences and paragraphs, poetry in its simplest definition is organized in units called lines as well as in sentences, and often in stanzas, which are the paragraphs of poetry. The way a line of poetry is structured can be considered a kind of garment that shapes and clothes the thought within it. The oldest and most longstanding genres for classifying poetry are epic, a long narrative poem centered around a national hero, and lyric, a short poem expressing intense emotion.

Poetry is like other literary works such as prose and drama, it also has its own structures, purposes, languages and general characteristics. Commonly, poetry written in verse in which consists of lines and stanza. According to Reaske (1966) at least poetry also contains of sounds devices such as rhyme, rhythm, repetition, meter, and onomatopoeia and speech of language such as simile, metaphor, hyperbole, and personification. All of the elements of parts of poetry can be used to find information or ideas in comprehending and appreciating it. The readers can start to analyze poetry or poem from poetic devices, types, sound devices, structural devices and all aspects of poetry that can be analyzed. 

Based on some definitions above, it cannot be concluded that poetry has particular definition. When readers analyzed or appreciated poetry is not focused on the definition. The essence of poetry remains elusive and open to a range of definitions. The more important things of comprehending and appreciating the poetry are what the contents of poetry. Schakel and Ridl, (1997:12) state that reading poetry differs from reading a newspaper or a memo and a book. Reading poetry is a process of finding particular information, ideas, experiences, message, values and themes for pleasure or serious analysis. Poems also lead the readers feel intensely, to experiences deeply, and often to extend our understanding of experiences different from the readers’ experience or to affirm own ideas and experiences of the readers.
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  1. poetry comes from the heart. to the devil with stanza and meter and all these stupid man made rules.

  2. It should be emphasized that poetry is a form of language closely related to song and as with song, emotion and the sound of the language play a part equally significant to the intended meaning. The many specific formalities in poetry each contribute to the final impact of the final output and there are many highly acclaimed examples in the field that escape me entirely as to content and intent. Nevertheless the field is so wide and varied that there is plenty to enjoy and admire for all sorts of individuals and tastes.

  3. This all means that poetry is a language that shares our emotions and ideas in a mysterious form and which offers meaning as meaning.


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