Beyond Poetry ©
A verbal composition designed to convey
experiences, ideas, or emotions in a vivid and imaginative way, characterized
by the use of language chosen for its sound and suggestive power and by the use
of literary techniques such as meter, metaphor, and rhyme.
a term applied to any kind of discourse that is not poetry. This term usually,
but not always, refers to written rather than spoken language.
It may be easier to define prose by
examining how it differs from poetry: the distinctions between the two are most
evident in the structure. Prose does
not have a rhythmical construction like most poetry, nor does it utilize the
with verse. It does not require the use of rhyming words at the end of lines,
and it is does not employ the brevity and economical use of words for which
poetry is often known.
There are some elements of
poetry, however, that prose does
utilize. These elements include the use of metaphor, the comparison of two
unlike objects, and alliteration — the use of similar sounds at the beginning of
words. Prose can
also employ imagery, a term for the use of specific details that help to create
the concrete visual world in the mind's eye. Imagery is like a painting made out
From the Latin words prosa
oratio, which mean "direct speech," prose is
the dominant form in literature. It the accepted mode of writing for novels,
short stories, plays and folk tales.
The poetic works of a given author,
group, nation, or kind.
An African American septet syllabic/word
count form consisting of 2 words/syllables the first line, 4 the second, 6 the
third, 8 the fourth, 6 the fifth, 4 the sixth, and 2 the seventh. The Eintou
developed as a means of placing African American poetic forms in the forefront
of American poetry. Many African American poetic scholars and critics often
attempt to mimic Euro-American forms as a means of demonstrating poetic
expertise, or defensively, staunchly stand by "free-verse" as an African
American form. It's rare to see serious examination of African American poetic
forms; in fact most critics erroneously regard African American poetry as
"formless" or "mimicking."
The time has come for a form that, while
encompassing the strategies of blues and jazz, bounds beyond them into an
embodiment of all that we have become as African Americans; a form that frees us
from the dialectical restrictions and mere grammatical and spelling distortions
of current performance poetry ("postmodern," though some may claim it to be,
notwithstanding); a form that allows us to express the diversity of our "highest
emotions and aspirations" while not losing any of our racial flavor (imagery,
idioms, peculiar turns of thought, humor and pathos). I believe the Eintou
answers that call!
The Eintou encompasses much African
American culture and philosophy, and it offers the African American poet who
wishes to write in structured meter an avenue within which to do so without
having to employ European structures. The term Eintou is West African for
"pearl" as in pearls of wisdom, and
often the Eintou imparts these pearls in heightened language.
The 2-4-6-8-6-4-2 structure of the Eintou
is crucial in terms of African and African American philosophy. That is, in our
culture, life is a cycle. Everything returns to that from which it originates.
The concept of a pearl, which is a sphere, and the cyclic nature of the Eintou's
structure captures this very poignantly. The life of the Eintou begins with two
syllables or words, expands as though growing and then returns to two syllables
or words. In this the Eintou, as we, never escapes its beginnings or history. We
from, through, and ultimately return to that from which we come.
is a very short
Traditional Japanese haiku consisted of three lines of 5, 7, and 5
units which generally corresponded to
They also contained a special season word — the
descriptive of the season in which the haiku was set. Some say that
a haiku must also combine two different images, be written in
present tense, have a focus on description and have a pause (the
kireji or "cutting word") at the end of either the first or
second line. All such rules are based in the Japanese language and
literary tradition and are habitually broken by most poets,
especially when adapted for languages other than Japanese (where
they can seem arbitrary).
poets use the 5-7-5 syllables rule, which is often taught in
schools. The 5-7-5 practice produces a haiku much longer than a
traditionally composed haiku in Japanese, as the Japanese do not
they are defined in English, but instead count
(singular mora), or phonetic units of the language. Morae are
generally shorter than the average of English syllables which are
highly variable in length. Also contributing to the change in length
is the fact that one character particles are used in Japanese
grammar to designate parts of a sentence as well as possessives.
While the former use is often left implicit in his compact form, the
possessive marker "no" can often be found even in haiku and
counts as a mora even though it is not a word per se.
In Acrostic poems, the first letters of each line are
aligned vertically to form a word. The word often is the subject of
on the wind
graceful and free
aware of the currents
walking a delicate stem
flower a beacon
deep to the sweetness
on to the next one
no sign of its visit
pollen now carried along
Each line of
a Five W's
Poem answers one of the 5 W's (who? what? when? where? why?)
The Monarch Butterfly
Makes its long voyage
Each fall or spring
To Mexico and back
To follow the call of intuition
centered this poem will take the form of a diamond:
Butterfly (one word)
soaring, gliding (two words)
passionate, focused, lilting (three words)
bright, colorful (two words)
butterfly (one word)
There are several
are poems with two rhyming lines:
Butterfly flitting by
wings were made to fly
have three rhyming
If I could follow the butterflies
I'd feel the wind that fills the skies
Both day and night and feel its sighs
use a variety. For example, every line may rhyme with a couplet at
Limericks are fun poems that combine a couplet with a triplet. (See
are fun poems that combine a couplet with a triplet.
Lines 1, 2 & 5
rhyme with each other. Lines three and four rhyme.
What is a limerick, Mother?
It's a form of verse, said brother
In which lines one and two
Rhyme with five when it's through
And three and four rhyme with each
Poem states an idea with a list of phrases.
poetry includes five lines:
Butterflies (names object)
delicate, agile (two adjectives or describing words)
fluttering, flying, lighting (three-ing verbs, or action words)
make me feel wistful (describe how you feel)
Lepidoptera (rename object)
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