Poetry Writing: Breaking the Rules

Writing poetry is not easy, especially when taken seriously and certain rules are applied. After all, poetry does have its type of rules or guidelines to break or follow, as you choose. One thing I've learned from studying different types of poetry writing (Cinquain, Villanelle, sonnets, etc.) is that once you know how to create a particular type of poem, you can invent new strategies that excite and motivate you.

For instance, Haiku is 3 lines: line 1 5 syllables; line 2, 7 syllables; and line 3, 5 syllables.  I can write a traditional Haiku or go completely off-grid and create an entirely new form and guidelines. such as 7 syllables per line, 4 line stanzas, with 4 stanzas. Of course, this will no longer be Haiku, but it will still be poetry. 

I can do this with sonnets also, but until I knew how to write a sonnet or even what it was, I didn't know how to create anything new based on sonnets, By the way, I love sonnets written in classical form.

I am now studying rules, guidelines and types of poem to improve my own writing, while continuing to create fiction and nonfiction. Happy holidays to all!


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