Monday, September 30, 2013

Analysis: Is Rhyme Dead?

Why has metered poetry gone the way of the dinosaur?  Or is it just me?  Surely, there are still poets like myself that prefer to write in the "traditional" style.  By that, I mean rhyming poetry with some sort of meter.  I know they exist, but where can you stumble on their work?  In my experience, finding a poetry publication that accepts and spotlights that genre, let alone a publication that exclusively publishes such, is next to impossible.  Those that did are defunct.  I don't get it.

It seems that poetry has evolved from rhyme to free-verse.  Admittedly, I have not learned to appreciate the free-verse art form yet...largely because it often feels like just chopped up prose.  Reading it feels like someone has written a story and then formatted it to appear to have meter.  John Whitworth humorously explored the topic in Able Muse back in 2009.  Like John, I believe in art and I'm not serious either.    I'm not arguing for the exclusivity of one form over the other, just a level playing field.  I'm genuinely perplexed by the lack of interest in rhyme.

I remember the first time I was assigned to write a poem.  I was in 7th grade and the thought of it both petrified and excited me at the same time.  I still have that poem - it rhymed.  Looking back, it was also marginal, but it ignited something in me that persists to this day. 

If you read my Translating the Passion post, you're aware I also try to write song lyrics.  Most songs still rhyme.  I consider songwriters to be today's true poets.

I'd love to hear your views on the decline of rhyme.  If anyone is aware of a publication I've overlooked that still focuses (or doesn't scorn) rhyming poetry, please make me aware.  In the meantime, The Twilight Blue will try to provide a haven for metered rhyme in hopes that it can enjoy a resurgence.

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