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Rain Dog


Member

Posted Fri Jan 16th, 2009 10:22pm Post subject: The Ode Less Travelled
I got the book some time ago and started to read it, carrying a notebook with me to do all the exercises. I think it's a fantastic book and hopefully all the things I learn from it will be of use during my university studies (I just started my English studies last autumn). Actually I was already familiar with some of the terminology since I took an Introduction to Literary Studies course in my first term and had to analyse some poems.

This book would definitely be great as a part of a course on poetry. I'm doing one such course next year and I intend to use Ode Less Travelled as my guide. I'm already having so much fun with it.
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amberzak


Member

Posted Sat Jan 17th, 2009 1:11pm Post subject: The Ode Less Travelled
I love this book.
I keep trying to get my University to put it on the reading list, as we do creative writing and genre, poetry, and everything we learn is in this book

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anabelle


Member

Posted Tue Feb 24th, 2009 12:38pm Post subject: The Ode Less Travelled
As Simon Critchley says "poetry is life with the ray of imagination's power shot through it." Imagination needs to be set free not tied to verse forms. The more time you spend on form the less you will have to say, come to form after many many years of finding yourself having to write down what is burning inside of you. Utilise a technique that may aid the expressive power of your thought, but please, please, please, just write. Don't let form and the history of the poem block your access to the subconscious.

Poetry is liberating, life affirming, it is not an academic exercise. Drown in words and thoughts, express yourself. Read the greatest thinkers; understand philosophers, watch great cinema, look at great art, listen to great music. Then you will start to build the muscles of imagination. Look at the paintings of Francis Bacon, watch Tarkovsky's cinema, you will understand just from those two artists enough about destroying figurative representation and going beyond what each medium intrinsically inhibts.

Poetry is this, it is not part of academia! Form will destroy you, be very very careful to use it, never ever let it become your master. Poetry is taught as something other than it is, and hence why the greatest of all art forms is the least understood and more sadly least enjoyed by the general public. Art teachers aren't great painters. Throw your words across the paper, communicate from your heart. listen and watch all life, connect with all things, there is poetry. It is as free as nature itself it is the heart of us all and it is beautiful.

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exoskeleton


Member

Posted Tue May 26th, 2009 2:02am Post subject: The Ode Less Travelled
I am not going to read this whole thread (yet) but I have just begun this book and I am surprised be how enthusiastic I find myself! I have never been set against poetry but I this book is already making me really excited to learn. it reminds me of the book Thank You For Arguing which was extremely enjoyable to read and continues to help me in both writing and living.

sockdolager.

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owentheeditor


Member

Posted Wed Jul 8th, 2009 5:29pm Post subject: The Ode Less Travelled
Am I being a total tool?

And like the flowers beside them, chill and shiver

Robert Frost: Spring Pools

is this not iambic hexameter rather than a weak ended pentameter? or is "flowers" actually "flours" and my head's northern dialect making a mountain out of a "wer" molehill?

Loving the book but niggled by this miscreant. Help!

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exoskeleton


Member

Posted Wed Jul 8th, 2009 9:48pm Post subject: The Ode Less Travelled
I think it's right in the book, if I'm reading your post correctly. the book has it scanned as iambic pentameter with a weak ending? I have it sitting right next to me but I can't immediately find where that passage is used.
I think it hinges on what you were hinting at-- that in this case "flowers" is meant to have only one syllable. I too would put two syllables in "flower" in normal speech, and I speak northern US English. I think it's pretty standard.

btw, if you were to use two syllables for flowers, I doubt there would be accents on "and" and the "ver" of shiver anyway. I'd say:

"And like the flowers beside them, chill and shiver"

of course I don't know what the heck you'd call that-- it looks like two iambs, a pyrrhic, and three trochees, aka a big mess! X-D

regardless, it's fun to talk about the stuff from with book, I'm really enjoying it as well!

sockdolager.

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owentheeditor


Member

Posted Thu Jul 9th, 2009 12:00am Post subject: The Ode Less Travelled
phew. Thought I was going a bit weird and unable to count...how prosaic...I shall improve:

- / - / - / - / - /
I thought the words had confused my own brain


- / - / - / - / - / (-)
and addled me with readings quite insane....ly


I get two points for a hypermetric line - right? Though I'm probably docked 5 for wrenching "ly" in for getting the two...



Quite apart from that, it would be interesting to talk pulse over syllables. Clearly it is the case that pulse can override syllables in the context of a line governed by metrics, but how, without having too much knowledge of the canon, should one decide when one has a discretionary other syllable and when one has a hypermetric line/deviation to hexa or (n+1)ameter? In this case it's easy, you have the simple fact that "be-", "them", "and", and "-ver" provide no additional information in the line. The line exists in the mind (at least the anglo-saxon mind) free of these gap fillers (they are prefix, pronoun, conjunction and suffix respectively - all the sense is carried in the alternate beats from these).

In inflected languages you'd get away with it because you can be a bit free with your grammar (cite the fairly parsimonious use of the instrumental case in old english) and just hash the words until they fit. Or use the joy of a language like latin to the skin the cat in another form. Regardless, my point is, we have a language, in English, which has more flexibility than any other due to its wealthy heritage. Why not acheive this more completely? Or am I (I fear to tread here) reading too much into this line?

Feel free to say that, will totally take it on the chin.

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