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No Time for Rhyme?
July 27, 2009 |
When did the rhyme go out of poetry? It used to be that poems rhymed and used a prescribed number of lines that were formed in a special way. Now it seems that all one needs to do is write down one's thoughts in a curious and clever way and call it a poem and it is a poem. So when did this sea change occur and why?
It began in Berkeley
Not steadily but jerkily,
The loss of rhyme
And sense of time
And a prescribed number of lines formed in a special way.
The poets of Berkeley looked out across the Bay
Toward the Golden Gate
And it rhymed with punctuate
But it didn't rhyme with mist.
So rhyme and form were kissed
Goodbye. Call it clever or curious,
But breaking the rules does not worry us
Poets. And something loose and free in the City of St. Francis
Made poets decide to take their chances
And let the sonnet ride off into the sunset.
Though I wrote a sonnet once at
The corner of 9th and Irving
As the N-Judah train came swerving
Around the bend, which proves that it can be done,
Provided you have someone
You can write a sonnet to who will be appropriately impressed.
Which is maybe why rhyme and form disappeared in the Far West.
The highest purpose of poetry is to win the heart of the Beloved
And there is no high purpose that is above it,
And if the Beloved doesn't care for rhyme and form, then really
A man is probably going to write freely.