No, dear student, I can't tell you
how to write a poem.
I can read you all my favorites
and hope that you feel connected
to the poet's emotions through her words.
That you will be inspired to accost your own
feelings which you will lovingly,
painfully display in lines and stanzas.
I can show you spoken word videos
and will you to look into the wounded heart
of a poet who has reached in, ripped out his soul,
and tenderly put it on display just for you.
And you can poke and prod around the core of
your being, and bravely reveal someone no one yet knows.
I can even teach you about similes
and metaphors and symbols in hopes that
you'll discover one lurking somewhere in
the right side of your brain,
like a fish in the cool shadow of a grassy bank,
nonchalantly eyeing the bait I've so
carefully cast into just the right current.
You see, you have to come out of the cool
to write a poem. Poetry requires opinion.
I requires unabashed honesty. You're not here to
maintain your image. You're here to stretch.
So let go of expectations. Forget about reputations.
Find something that speaks to you, then discover the
right words to effectively speak back.
That's how you write a poem.