seven statements about writing poetry

1. Every poet is an experimentalist.

6. You do not learn from work like yours as much as you learn from work unlike yours.

8. Try to write poems at least one person in the room will hate.

9. The I in the poem is not you but someone who knows a lot about you.

22. What they say "there are no words for"--that's what poetry is for. Poetry uses words to go beyond words.

26. A finished poem is also the draft of a later poem.

27. A poet sees the differences between his or her poems but a reader sees the similarities.

- Some of my favourite of Marvin Bell's "Thirty-two Statements About Writing Poetry", published in the Commemorative 2002 issue of The Writer's Chronicle. Read all thirty-two here.

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