In an interview on Nail Your Novel, Roz Norris talks with educator Joe Nutt about the importance of poetry. They examine the language and form of poems, how the form emphasizes both the sound and shape of words, and how the structure of a poem – spacing, line breaks – helps develop its meaning.
Norris recommends that prose writers read poetry for inspiration and to develop their craft. I love this advice. Workshops and even many books on writing seem determined to beat the lyricism out of prose, particularly genre work. Yes, there’s value in a story’s forward momentum, but there’s no sin in experimenting with language along the way.
I like this advice so much I’m going to take it. I have a number of favorite poets – Elizabeth Bishop, Frank O’Hara, Alice Walker, Audre Lorde, Pat Parker, Mina Loy, ee cummings, and even that reliable college standby T.S. Eliot. Time to refresh my love of good poetry and revitalize my writing.
Who are some of your favorite poets? Do they influence your writing?
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