EL150: Cause I'm freeeeeee...

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Essential Literary Terms by Sharon Hamilton

Free Verse - also called open form verse, is distinguished from traditional versification in that its rhythms are not organized into the regularity of meter; most free verse also lacks rhyme.


Oh free verse, love of my life. I like free verse for two reasons. The first is obvious, it's easy. (I don't think I know anyone that doesn't like easy things, so don't judge me cause I'm using my poetry easy button.) The second is because when the reader isn't discracted by the rhythm or the rhyming business. With free verse the thoughts of, "oh what a cute little rhythm this is," or  "golly, I didn't see that word coming to rhyme with that one," never happens. (Thank you, because those were annoying to even type.)

With free verse the reader is focused on the reading. Mind blowing idea I know. But I like to write free verse so whoever is reading my stuff focuses on the words, and what they mean and what all of them put together means. Free verse is perfect of us ADD kids, because all the discractions were taken away and all you have is the beautiful raw material. (LOOOVE IT!)

But now I'm going to go finish watching Dane Cook and go to mindnight breakfast - cause I love those things too.

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Greta Carroll said:

I like free verse too, but I think you are oversimplifying free verse by saying it is easy to write. Just like in a sonnet, every word, comma, everything has to be included for a purpose. Granted, you don’t have to worry about rhyming, but with such freedom the author needs to be more careful that they aren’t running away with their thoughts and not focusing on the concise nature of poetry and making sure every words has tons of meaning packed into it.

1) Easy, meaning easiER than other types of poetry that have so many rules.

2) "But I like to write free verse so whoever is reading my stuff focuses on the words, and what they mean and what all of them put together means." MEANING...my writing isn't running away with random thoughts, but that each word is put in there for a reason and the lack of the need for rhyming makes the reader focus on the words that have "tons of meaning packed into [them]."

Greta Carroll said:

Chelsea, I did not mean that your poetry did not have these things. I am sure it does. The point I was trying to make (although I did not make it clear enough) was that I think that free verse is just as hard as other poetry, but that it presents its own unique challenges. Because, as you explained each word does have so much meaning packed in it, it still requires a lot of effort. And I did not mean to imply that you run away with your thoughts in your poetry, my point was that it is easier to do so in free verse than in a sonnet or some other type of structured poem. I just thought that by saying "it's [free verse] easy, you weren't giving yourself enough credit. Because you realize all the meaning that must go into free verse and do not run away with your thoughts, you are achieving something very admirable--so I felt you were devaluating the work you have done, by saying it was easy. I did not mean to insinuation that you didn’t focus your poems or select words carefully.

Thanks for the concern, Greta. However, I rarely ever devaluate my work.

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