Freeing the Verse

Freeing the verses of the stoic man;
Should enliven the tongue and be a gift to the fingers.
Instead it’s a box forcing the untethered voice from conformity.
No longer bound by the restraint of the rhyme it generates confusion.
Should I break lines at the quatrain or simply continue the thought.
This reads like an undisciplined sonnet caught in a selfish voice;
Trying to justify its end’s by its means or is it?
Alas poor Yorick laughs from his grave.

© 2011 Michael Yost

12 responses to “Freeing the Verse

  1. As Poets United reaches its first anniversary this coming week we want to thank you for your support. Over the past year we have grown to 250 members plus and are steadily growing. Poets United is proud to have you as one of our members and look forward to another successful year. Your imagination, creativity and willingness to share with us is what makes our community such a wonderful place. Thank you for beautiful poetry and thank you for being a part of Poets United.


  2. I like it Michael… I liked that you let yourself out of the box and test the poetic waters… keep at it… warm regards, jeanne


  3. I like the irony of critically examining the form while writing in it. Free verse has indeed led many astray into an ocean of self-indulgence and a riot of confusion, but you use it here as well as you abuse it for its more egregious faults. Thanks for linking up today.


  4. ha. well played…you held the tale (tail) of that twister well not letting it wreak poetic havoc….


  5. This brought a smile to me. I much enjoyed your mini rant regarding the very form in which you’re indulging; it is a most delicious and delightful irony.


  6. The paradox – well examined in free verse here. That’s why I wanted to look at this for a solid month. I want cogent voices discussing whether it is prose or whether it is verse. Is verse elevated or has it moved on to maddening cliche in rap songs while prose especially in novel form or “how-to” books takes center stage. Why do poets long to write it? What motivates us to think ourselves poets. Do we hold a mirror up to life or simply exploit our egos in a dressed up array of fancy words? These are my questions. Sometimes I read poems that seem only political diatribes but with the four poets I asked to write about this subject, I get goosebumps, my breath stops, and I almost always feel I am in the presence of greatness. There’s a lot more ahead. Please return for more!

    And by the way, really well done here! Gay


    • Thank you Gay. I am looking forward to this discussion, because this form of poetry always left me in doubt as to what to say and frankly how to say it. There are so many free verse poems I don’t get past the first four lines or a stanza if used, based on the adjective count alone. I’ve only started writing since October of last year and I consider myself a person who likes to write poems, but don’t consider I should yet wear the mantle of poet. I’m saying this without the intent of hurting feelings or criticizing style or content but I personally feel if a poem is more than 4 or 5 stanzas I feel I’m being held hostage to the writer and a lot of free verse is longer than short stories.


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