|Index of Poetry. Highlights for Poetry. Books of Poetry Form. How to Write Poetry.|
Essays on how to write specific forms:
Haibun. Haiku. Hay(na)ku. Rengay. Tanka. Tanka surveys. Tan-renga.
Concrete. Fib. Ghazal. Lai. Pantoum. Prose poem. Rondeau. Rubáiyát.
Sestina. Skaldic verse. Sonnet. Terza rima. Triolet. Tritina. Villanelle.
|Las formas de la poesía en Español: El Poema Concreto.|
|J. Zimmerman (poems). J. Zimmerman (haiku).|
The Concrete Poem Form
by Ariadne Unst
History. Form. Your Composition. Example. References.
Introduced in the 1950's, the term "Concrete Poem" now often includes what was historically called the "Pattern Poem" or (in the terminology of Kenneth Koch) a "Shape Poem."
In a Pattern or Shape Poem, the shape of the poem on the page symbolizes the content of the poem.
How to Read a Poem and Fall in Love with Poetry
by Edward Hirsch,
reports that "pattern poems have been found in Greek, Latin ..., Hebrew, Chinese, Sanskrit, ancient Persian, and in most modern European languages." The Pattern Poem shows a visual relationship of the form and the meaning.
In the 1950's poets in Switzerland and Sweden and Brazil started, independently, to develop "Concrete Poetry" (partly as an adaptation of "concrete painting", a minor European school of the 1940's). In such poems, the arrangement of words and phrases on the page indicated the poem's meaning.
Poets who have made such mergers of appearance and content include George Herbert, Lewis Carrol (pen name of Charles L. Dodgson), Ezra Pound, Guillaume Apollinaire, and Stephane Mallarmé.
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These are the features of such a poem:
The attractiveness and robustness of the term "Concrete" means that modern poems that would previously have been called "Pattern Poems" are now called "Concrete Poems."
Rose, Where Did You Get That Red? - Teaching Great Poetry to Children,
Kenneth Koch suggests some ways to get started on writing a Concrete Poem,
though he uses the friendlier title of Shape Poem.
His suggestions include:
The indentation reflects the steep, long flight of steps referenced in the poem.
The meaning of the poem would remain if the increasing indentation of successive lines were removed. But, by mirroring the content, the unusual layout reinforces the content of the poem.
THE LOST AND FOUND DEPARTMENT OF DREAMS: BRUSSELS J. Zimmerman For David. "we've been around, we fall, we fly we mostly fall" Song of Bernadette, Leonard Cohen I strode off the high cathedral top-most step like a miracle worker, or a Blessed passing the final exam for Saint. The city expanded at my feet. For one pico-second, I flew. I fell. I can't remember how (bruised but unbroken) I ended, though I remember the long fall, and (this was the first time you saved me) your cat-like twist as you threw yourself faster than the grab of gravity below me, so your chest protected my face, your arms wrapped around me, your body grated for mine against granite, while we tumbled like cast-out angels.
Runes Review of Poetry,
Editors CB Follett and Susan Terris.
Issues (on themes of Mystery, Gateway, etc.) include concrete poems.
|Books of Poetry Form.|
Books of Poetry Form.
Alphabetic list of poetry forms and topics.
How to Write Poetry.
Environmental Ethics Blog.
© 2003-2015 by Ariadne Unst (except for poem as marked).
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