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Tag: William Carlos Williams

Fumblings with poetry

(Notes take largely from James Rother’s blog)

Poetry to the rhythm of a heart beat

“The iambs’s not a normal way of speech”

Te Tum Te Tum Te Tum Te Tum Te Tum

Poetry to the rhythm of our breaths

“so much depends

a red wheel

glazed with rain

beside the white

William Carlos Williams


[Breaking at breaths of American speech (at the time); each line advancing the action; the paragraph being a self-contained form – a second paragraph might have had a different form]


Which captures the imagination more readily?

Which is easier to remember?

Which allows fresh and surprising pairing of words?

My questions

Which offers possibility and what sort?

Which affirms identity and whose?

Rhythmic poetry or free-verse?

Poetry : a rope bridge of vowels

Prose: a causeway of consonants

The metrical poem : begins with an assumption of human life which takes place in a pattern of orderly recurrence with which the poet must come to terms (Hass)

The free-verse poem : begins with an assumption of openness or chaos in which order must be discovered (Hass)

Most metrical poems : by establishing an order so quickly, move almost immediately from the stage of listening for an order to the stage of hearing it in dialogue with itself. They suppress animal attention in the rush to psychic magic and they do so by laying claim to art and the traditions of art at the beginning.  (Hass)

The free-verse poem : insists on the first stage of sensual attention, of possibility and emergence—which is one of the reasons why it seemed fresher and more individual to the twentieth century. . . . (Hass)


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