Let It Be
Ladies and Gentlemen, this is an example of a poem that needs a little more work, a little more time, or an all expense paid trip to the verse junk yard.
I am never a fan of decomposing a poem that has potential. I believe that a piece of art is always greater than the sum of its parts, but in the rare occation that the overall idea isn’t met by the lines, and there is just as much bad as there is good, it might be time to take it apart.
For this one, the lines about the sky reflecting, as well as the divots line may be the only real salvage from this wreck. I hate to put Poem 27 to rest. The greatness of a poem should be given the respect and space to grow. However, when it’s time to decompose, have the forsight to do so in a timely and concise manner.
As a poet, you have the power to retire a poem. If you don’t make that decision, there might be a poem in your collecton that doesn’t belong. It seems foolish now, but there will be a time when yu are no longer around to make that decision. Now not all of us are going to be world class poet wonder-dogs, but there is no telling what might happen to a collection posthumously… just look at Emily Dickenson, Keats, Poe all the rest of the world’s poets who had no idea they would be so popular. Their collections fell into the hands of others, people who intended the best, to be anthologized and memorialized.
It seems a bit pretentious. I hardly count myself among those greats, but would remind everyone that there is no telling with the cannon, that things and people come in and out of fashion way after death, and taking that control now is the best way to taylor your collection. Take control, so your children or lover or great neice Matilda doesn’t have to stumble through your work and decide for you.
I will retire this poem; I will be harsh and critical and remove it from my collection. There’s nothing that can be done without making this piece a small fraction of what it was, and it would be much better to just take those lines and use them elsewhere.
If you’re not harsh, someone else will be. Look at your work as critically and lethally as possible. When it’s time to let a poem lie, don’t take too much remorse to heart. Cut now or give that poewer to someone else when it’s too late to make changes. Think of your collection as a living will, revise as often as possible and leave the truest form of yourself at all times. You never know what might be left to interpertation when you’re gone; you never know what will be favored by the cannon. Poetry is as much about beauty and truth as it is about control, so control your words, your lines and your collection to the best of your talents.