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comment by ButterflyEffect
ButterflyEffect  ·  279 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Why I think the tech interview process is broken – Medium

    Poetry in general seems to me like the writings of people who are massive egos and/or think they are deep when they really aren't saying or thinking anything valuable or interesting.

I'm interested in why you feel this way.




flagamuffin  ·  279 days ago  ·  link  ·  

probably because most of it is crap

don't know if the various "poets" have the malicious intentions that mr. bioemerl ascribes to them, but i'm a consequentialist so i don't care

i have written a few dozen poems and he's definitely right that it's damn hard to make what you write externally valuable in any way. not even sure how you would go about that

lil  ·  278 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I was just re-reading a poem you wrote

Cedar  ·  278 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I can dig it, thanks lil for finding it, and thanks flagamuffin for writing it!

Cedar  ·  279 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I found a poem by my Grandad, I only read a few lines before I realised what it was; he's in his very late 80s and his wife of over 50 years (and my wonderful grandmother) passed away a few years ago.

The poem has no external value, why would it? It's written for her to help him grieve, and yes, from what I read it is really bad... Vogon levels of bad. But bless him he tried, and did, and I ain't going to be throwing it away, not even when he passes.

flagamuffin  ·  279 days ago  ·  link  ·  

yeah it's sort of confusing. i like my poems, for example, but i wouldn't publish them. i have occasionally liked poems by refugee, thenewgreen, etc -- wouldn't put 'em with keats though.

i just can't figure out why, necessarily.

i think external value is important in pretty much everything, but poetry is an incredibly opaque, personal form of art

ButterflyEffect  ·  279 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Don't disagree on most of it being crap. Guess I've been on a bit of a Longley kick lately. My thoughts are that the value of truly talented poetry (holy subjectivity...) is the ability to convey or facilitate a greater sense of emotional clarity or purity.

The following quotes are attributed to Longley. Granted, there are very few people with his level of talent.

    And one of the marvelous things about poetry is that it’s useless. It’s useless. “What use is poetry?” people occasionally ask in the butcher shop, say. They come up to me, and they say, “What use is poetry?” And the answer is no use, but it doesn’t mean to say that it’s without value. It’s without use, but it has value.

    Well, it’s much more complicated than solace. I like the Aristotelian notion of catharsis. And I think what art can do is to tune you up. I mean, if you think of an out-of-tune violin, and tuning it up so that it’s in tune, I think that’s what art is, and that’s what art does. And good art, good poems is making people more human, making them more intelligent, making them more sensitive and emotionally pure than they might otherwise be.
Cedar  ·  279 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Note though, art doesn't have to be good to have value, and value is not intrinsically linked to effectiveness, but can be.

An artist learns from poor, ugly works, but may feel no love or worth in them.

ArtemusBlank  ·  278 days ago  ·  link  ·  

If I had to guess at why people don't like poetry or think it's a bunch of words without no value is because it doesn't really talk to them. Poetry to some people doesn't communicate to them the way a tv show or a song does. It's not simple enough to be understood and it doesn't have the action that people seek. When a person talks about their emotions in a poem, their words are only felt by people who have been in their situation before or those who are open to the language of a poem. When people see poetry, they see this complex thing that they don't want to deal with because it's usually a thing they don't have to deal with.