Well, I must admit, poetry is a unique genre in itself. In today’s modern times, it has emerged and evolved wondrously, changing its roots and facets manifold.
Strictly going by the definition from the dictionary, a composition in verse, characterized by a highly artistic form, heightened language, rhythm to express an intense imagination, interpretation of the subject etc.
Theoretically correct. But, I beg to differ. If truth be told, a poem is all of this and much much more. Imagine painting a picture on your mind’s eye, while filling out colours with ideas and thoughts and portraying it out to the world. Best part??? Your Canvas is yours Alone.Special.No filters. Probably, it is one of the arts where the artist is at liberty to depict his/her true feelings, emotions and splay them across in the manner they deem fit.
Poems today don’t depict simply pieces of art-emotional, heart wrenching lines wriitten in style. They are also one of the most prominent platforms being used to bring about a radical change at the mass level, also serving as a holistic and spiritually fulfilling experience for many, I daresay. I might confess at this point that my recently released book 52 Pips: Poetry from Time’s deck is written keeping in mind such an idea itself. To appeal to not only the niche but the entire mass audience and convert them to active readers and poetry lovers is what has been my motto whilst creating these pieces of poetry.
Back in previous times, poets used different techniques, tools and styles of writing. From Ballads, Sonnets, Sestinas to Haiku, poems were expressed in different ways. Some of the best poems written over the years, I feel, one must really read are:-
1. Daffodils by William Wordsworth:
One of Wordsworth’s best romantic works till date, this one is written in an imaginative diction and stance, highlighting a common day, simple yet, beautiful experience by the poet describing the realms of nature he experienced in that moment.
2. The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost:
This one is sooo relatable!! A complete metaphor. This one clearly stands out and resonates for many because it reflects the ideology that at every juncture of life, it is the choices we make, that give us success or regret.
3. The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T. S. Eliot:
This one’s HUGE!!! A humongous, dramatic monologue putting across the poet’s perception of different points of time in a single frozen kind of frame. The style is uniquely expressive and rich in detail. Beautifully penned emotions!!
4. Palanquin Bearers by Sarojini Naidu
This one by our revered, esteemed Sarojini Naidu ji is a beautiful ‘painting’ of an Indian tradition where men carry the bride to be in a custom made ‘palki’. This surely hits the right emotional chord. Although the custom mentioned is Indian, this piece of work had garnered accolades with audiences worldwide, putting Naidu ji on the world map.
5. In a station of the metro by Ezra Pound:
One of the pioneers in the Modern American literature, Ezra’s unique literary tool of employing parataxis (where word phrases and clauses are placed randomly without any co-ordination or linearity) as well as of creating unique forms of speech and grammar jargon, he has single handedly crafted the culture of Modernist Literature. This poem can be called a classic example of micro poetry.
6. If… by Rudyard Kipling:
This one is written more in an advisory style by the acclaimed Nobel Laureate Rudyard Kipling in 1895. It gives an inspirational and morale boosting message to the readers to follow exceptional life virtues and model life values. It elaborates courage, fortitude and other many facets of exemplary manhood.
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7. Death, Be Not Proud by John Donne:
This sonnet is a major extended metaphor. In this one, the author has explored the mystics surrounding Death and attempts to undermine its abilities. A probable inspiration from the Biblical Line “The last enemy to be destroyed is Death”. A stellar read, kind of relatable in today’s troubled times.
8. Stopping by woods on a snowy evening by Robert Frost:
One of Frost’s loveliest works , this one depicts our life’s true path and hierarchy. Every object in this piece is symbolic and full of significance and deep meaning. The harness bells for example, signifies the voice of our inner conscience , telling us time and again that we have miles to go and a lot to do in life before we truly rest aka die peacefully.
9. All the Wold’s a Stage by William Shakespeare:
Well, an absolute classic , if truth be told. This one speaks volumes with the imagery it spins through its finely woven chains of illustrative, narrative words it carries. Like a storm proceeding at break neck speed , waiting for the eventual climax , there’s simply no comparision to this one. By the God of Poetry and the Master Craftsman itself.
10. Commitment by Rupi Kaur
The instapoetess, who has found major fan following not only on Instagram but worldwide. Her poems come exquisitely from a place in the heart which connects to her readers and how!!! One of her engaging pieces from the sun and her flowers is ‘Commitment’. This one speaks about true commitment of one soul mate towards the other on the cusp of death. Deep Indeed!!!
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