Listen to criticism and try to learn from it, but don’t live or die by it. When I was in college, I would always take my best reviewed poem from the previous class and submit it to the professor for the next class. Invariably, the next professor hated the poem, and could provide good reasons why it failed.
When you write a good poem, one you really like, immediately write another. Maybe that one poem was your peak for the night, bit maybe you’re on a roll. There’s only one way to find out.
The bigger your theme, the more important the details are. A poem with Love, Destiny, Hate or other huge themes in the title already has two strikes against it (and I like love poems).
Say what you want to say. Let your readers decide what your poem means.
Feel free to write a bad poem.
That one perfect line in a thirty-line poem may be what makes it all worthwhile. It may also be what is ruining the rest of your poem. Keep an eye on it.
Don’t explain everything.
Untitled poems are like unnamed children.
People will remember an image long after they’ve forgotten why it was there.
Develop your voice. Get comfortable with how you write.
There are many excuses not to write. Try using writing as an excuse not to do other things.
The more you read, the more you learn. Read poetry often.
The more you write, the more you develop. Write poetry often.
Poems that focus on formÂ are rarely my favorites, but most of my favorite poets learned how to write in forms before they discarded them. Writing in forms is a challenge. It makes you think.
Don’t be afraid to write from a different point of view. Write a poem that says exactly the opposite of what you believe. If you can,Â do it without irony.
When you cannot write, lie on the floor a while, go for a walk, or at least twirl around in a circle. Do something that changes your perspective.
Write in different places. Keep a notebook. Write in a park or on a street-corner or in an alley. You don’t have to write about the place, but it will influence you whether you do or not.
Listen to talk radio while you write. Listen to the people who call. Great characters and voices emerge that way.
If you don’t like a poem or poet you read, figure out exactly why. It may reflect something you don’t like about your own poetry.
When nothing is coming, start writing very fast. Write down any and every word, phrase or sentence that comes to mind. Do that for about a minute before you go back to working on your poem.Â I call this trick flushing. Feel free to use anything you came up with, but the purpose of flushing is to clear your head.
Sorry Ignore the A's with squiggles!!!