Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Rhyme and Reason

I have never been able to write poetry. Unlike most of my friends who can wax eloquent, complete with rhyming words and all, I cannot for the life of me rhyme. Maybe it is because I have a predilection to use big words. Maybe it is because when I was little, I thought every line in a poem must rhyme. By the time I learnt of non rhyming poems, my mind had already been restricted.

The joys of haiku.

Never will I sample.

Pedestrian prose I write alas.

Coming from a family of poetry lovers didn’t help either. Dinner started with Thiruvalluvar and Kamban and dessert was served with a good portion of Khayyam. All I did was eat at that time. Sure, I do appreciate the occasional poetry, it moves me sometimes. What I cannot do is ooh and aah at implied metaphorical marvels that I cannot get. Nor does it irritate me to see people get Goosebumps at the mention of a particularly meaningful line.

Prose is capable of stirring emotions and encouraging thought. Prose is abstract and grounded. Beautiful, earthly, and solid. Poetry shifts meanings, allying itself to one of the many moods of the fickle mind. Vande Mataram makes me all quiet and contemplative. Jana Gana Mana commands respect. An occasional Gulzar or Vairamuthu will stir me. Random lyricists will have me in splits. But somehow I feel the pull of prose. Poetry is like the hot girlfriend. Prose is a comforting mother’s arms. The effect Tolkien has with his words, or the way Archer moves crisply, the way technical manuals go on for pages, without actually saying anything, crappy page 3 news full of rubbish with words littering the glitterati. Words by Bachi Kakaria and Bill Bryson will have you laughing, Lahiri makes you see futility and Tolstoy reduces to a teary rubble.

I try and try

But cannot rhyme

The output of my efforts, wry

Not worth a dime


Liberal said...

rhyming in poetry is occasionally appreciated but the poet gives himself away by compromising meaning for rhyme, the poetic web spun breaks and it can easily be spotted..i personally favor the metre in a poem...that makes it a true poem...but u are rite, poetry is more of a guilty pleasure!

Liberal said...

The way you have titled this article is amazing! it is so apt

Anonymous said...

"rhyming in poetry is occasionally appreciated"

Says who? That is sheer opinion.

"poet gives himself away by compromising meaning for rhyme"

What? Verse with rhyme is void of meaning? That is most certainly absurd.

"poetry is more of a guilty pleasure"

Nothing guilty about reading. You should feel guilty for not reading.

buddy said...

i have already stated my preferences..prose or poetry..perhaps there is some confusion here

Liberal said...

thank you Mr/Ms Anonymous for a conveniently literal interpretation of my opinion...poetry with rhyme is not devoid of meaning but when a poet compromises meaning for rhyme, it gives away the poet's pandering to the reader! i would like to have my opinions refuted logically by a person who would attach an identity to his/her name...in fact I look forward to such an argument as it would only lead to the expression of intelligent thoughts..so Mr/Ms anonymous..feel free to argue openly

Madhuri said...

Poetry is indeed like a hot girlfriend..hot boyfriend in my case:-) It is a lucid, well written post!

buddy said...

thanks madhuri...

swatimala said...