T Nation

(I'm so gonna get flamed)....Poetry

Now that I’m expected to get flamed to Kingdom Come, any t-magger interested in poetry? Read? Write? Favorites? I’ll cast my vote for e.e. cummings, some Ondaatje, John Donne, but then, I’m a geek, and would rather hear what everyone else has to say. (burn)


This is a squatting poem from the internet.-Down the road, in a gym far away
A young man was heard to say,
“No matter what I do, my legs won’t grow!”
He tried leg extensions, leg curls, leg presses too.
Trying to cheat, these sissy workouts he’d do!
From the corner of the gym where the big guys train,
Through a cloud of chalk and a midst of pain,
Where the big iron rides high, and threatens lives,
Where the noise is made with big forty-fives,
A deep voice bellowed as he wrapped his knees,
A very big man with legs like trees,
Laughing as he snatched another plate from the stack,
Chalked his hands and monstrous back,
Said, "Boy, stop lying and don’t say you’ve forgotten!.. Trouble with you is you ain’t been SQUATTIN’!

How could we flame someone who is already soooo flaming? Nah, just joking, I like poetry too. My faves are Rilke, Goethe, Milton and Coleridge. And there are a couple of fantastic books by a man named Owen Barfield (one of the “Inklings” along with J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.) Barfield wrote some fantastic books: Poetic Diction, History in English Words, Worlds Apart and What Coleridge Thought are the ones of his I have read. My personal favorite, though, is Poetic Diction. You should check em out if you can.

I’m so not into poetry. If I’m looking through some creative writing and hit a poem I go blank. I won’t even try to decipher the thing. I look at words and punctutation as if they are colors on a palette. I just don’t “get” using three colors and a knife to paint a picture when all the colors and a good selection of brushes does a much better job. I guess I’m just not smart enough for poetry.

1 A man said to the universe:
2 "Sir, I exist!
3 “However,” replied the universe,
4 "The fact has not created in me
5 “A sense of obligation.”

I hope you don’t get flamed. The warriors of anicent Japan were encouraged to study art and poetry. You might also try Blake, Frost and a host of others. Best of Luck.

5-0…you like Milton?? Yech. I think he’s one of the most tedious reads in the English language…I’ve had to read Paradise Lost twice, and both times couldn’t read more than a page without falling asleep. If you like Rilke, then check out Ondaatje’s “Tin Roof”, its got a nice Duino Elegies influence. Oh, and T.S. Eliot is the bomb, too…I could go on and on.

Dylan Thomas,William Blake,Robert Frost,ans Samuel Taylor Coleridge to name a few of my favorites.

You know that the difficulty you find in reading Milton is reflective of your own, fallen state. :wink:

I’m perfectly content with my fallen state, thank you very much…although one of my favorite quote is from Milton: “Better to reign in hell than to serve in heaven” (I think I got it right).

Milton has some good one-liners, but overall I have to agree that he’s just boring as all get-out. 'Course, I tend to think that way about other poets as well. I have specific poems or pieces of poetry that I like, but (aside from Shakespeare) no one poet that I think is consistently good.

“Ozymandias” is probably my favorite poem, Eliot’s “Sweeney Among the Nightengales” (for its meter and rhythms), a few others. Here’s one; a gold star to whomever can identify the writer:

Like the very gods in my sight is he who
sits where he can look in your eyes, who listens
close to you, to hear the soft voice, its sweetness
murmur in love and

laughter, all for him. But it breaks my spirit;
underneath my breast all the heart is shaken.
Let me only glance where you are, the voice dies,
I can say nothing,

but my lips are stricken to silence,
underneath my skin the tenuous flame suffuses;
nothing shows in front of my eyes, my ears are
muted in thunder.

And the sweat breaks running upon me, fever
shakes my body, paler I turn than grass is;
I can feel that I have been changed, I feel that
death has come near me.

Any takers? A hint: This is a translation (the original language wasn’t English, nor was it Japanese).

I love to read Sylvia Plath’s work. It may be dark and dreary for most, but I find her insight on herself to be incrediable.

Try The Prophet. If you can ignor the obvious christian slant it is good. Other than that. Frost is great. There are so damn many read till your eyes pop out. I personally love all of them try compilations till you find writers that really fit you then get books by just them. I personally like philosophy a lot as well. Kinda realated in that some philosophy is dictated in poetry.

I’m (supposed to be) writing a paper on Ezra Pound and his influence on Hemingway, and I gotta say that Pound is outstanding; In a Station of the Metro…yes! Yessir, Ezra Pound is A-1…if you ignore that whole fascist thing.

Tom F’n Jones. Henry Rollins is pretty bitchin’ too. And that guy from Nantucket.

MBE: “There once was a Monkeylike boy who…since 1334.”


“The clock struck 2, i dropped my goo, And let the bitch off on the block…oooooo”
Sir Andrew Dice Clay

There once was a monkey named Eric / who sent t-men to fits of hysterics / his tag-lines were funny / he thought TEK was money / but how did you drop him, dear mummy?

There once was a boy named eric, who’s ass was so worn you could’nt tear it. The way he licked my balls, had me climbin the walls,but he farted dead gerbils and ferrets.

‘Twas a rosey cheeked assasin
who set his goals upon massin’
instead of lean mass all the bulk was in ass
the forumites doubled from laughin’

MBE: “'Tis on. Since 1912.”