Friday, December 2, 2011
TRUTH IN POETRY
Not exactly, I thought and paused a moment before responding. "It depends on what you mean by 'true.'"
There is something about poetry that makes it feel personal, confessional, and the reader often assumes poems are autobiographical. And sometimes they are.
But nonfiction they are NOT.
We invent details to orient the reader, we embellish to add texture. The poem is a living, breathing thing that grows as we are writing it, as we discover our own truths. That ability to root in two worlds -- Real and Imagined -- is one of the most precious things about the experience of poetry.
Matthew J. Kirby addresses the issue of truth in his book ICEFALL:
"My tale last night. Did it comfort you?"
"And was the comfort real? Was it true?"
"I thought it was."
"Then the story was true. And that is what is most important in the telling, whether Thor's chariot is really pulled by two bucks or not."
Don't forget to visit Carol at Carol's Corner for Poetry Friday Roundup! (Image found at Free Motion Quilting.)