Tricking People Into Reading Poetry*

| March 21, 2012

Poet

Poetry today is an old man’s game, antiquated from a past era of ‘thou’ and ‘dost’, not taken seriously by the modern media, in a time where children never long to be poets, poetry is that thing you are strained to see for a GCSE, to essay on artificial values to a long dead poet, to coerce out emotion for pandering drivel, (I wandered lonely as a cloud // That floats on high o’er vales and hills…)

UNESCO has brawled back dedicating this day World Poetry Day with an aim to alleviate this stigma, showing poetry has the clout to transcend nations, pass on oral traditions from culture to culture through the generations, to pull populations to ‘reflect on the power of language’; to show that poetry is for this fresh world.

This realm of ours is beautiful to write about. Poetry can form the galvanic feelings of one particular moment, experienced when watching that sunset on an island horizon, to feel something that only you thought you had felt, then to see it written down by a stranger: poetry is oral storytelling and performance poets are starting to break the mould.

So why not, this World Poetry Day, give poetry a go? At My Destination we did, commissioning a seasoned poet to create, to celebrate this historic day. Sit back, make yourself a cup of tea and enjoy the lyrical prowess of our lexicons tutelage, Guy Arnold.

 

The Travelling Poet

‘There are no foreign lands. It is the traveller only who is foreign’ – Robert Louis Stevenson.

 

Many think poems should flow with the traffic, trip cleanly down tongues and rhyme,

yet verse owns the freedom of fire – don’t let it lead you – let it scrunch both sleeves of your

dust-battered shirt and drag you down side roads away from the herd. Let it let you

escape into places where maps fold in fear and the compass spins round in circles, crash

stop signs, lob dynamite into the seaweed, dance tantrums down farmyard, desert, hot jungle

tracks where choked gasps and peace signs, the pose and the shutter-snap fade

into myths of mist – or never exist. Some say travel should lead you somewhere. Others disband with

no knowledge or care – just go and explore, let your feet do the talking, lose your way

accidentally’. The end of their journey is the horizon while photos are stuffed into notepads

to bookmark a trip. It’s only when journeymen journey home once again -

in the quietest stretches of time – that memories in bottles with corks down their throats float

on the chopped waves of the mind – the borders of life and psyche are crossed…

…’not all those who wander are lost…’ – J.R.R. Tolkien.

 

 

 

*Get it? You just read two poems; a prose and an acrostic. Poetry can be fun!

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Category: Events & Seasonal Celebrations

About the Author ()

When I was six, I decided that I was going to be a writer. I would write books in a tree house on a typewriter, my friend Lauren would draw the pictures and my other friend Natalie would send them off to be sold. Fifteen years and one degree in Creative Writing later I’m half way there (I got a typewriter for my 20th birthday), and with a need to see the whole world before I get old, travel writing fits quite neatly into my life plan. Places I want to go to in the next year are China, Japan, India, San Francisco and North London.

Comments (5)

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  1. Guy Arnold says:

    Cheers, Ellie No.2. Yep, I’m proud of our joint effort. Glad you enjoyed it as well! 

  2. Will Jones says:

    Bravo! Excellent! :-)

    • Guy Arnold says:

      Thanks, Will. Good to get the poetry juices flowing again after months of abstinence! 

  3. EmmaSparks says:

    This is amazing Guy. Just wow! You’re a poet and I didn’t know it :P