Too many times I hear “poetry is a dying art” and “there’s no money in poetry," and I don’t too much disagree with them. But why is that? Why is the one thing that from childhood to adolescence that we learn about and the thing that helps most poets cope and express themselves so under-appreciated? I don’t know, but I decided to tell the world why poetry is still “cool."
Poets tell stories other forms of media can’t.
This one is very under-appreciated. Before social media where videos and pictures go viral, before TV, before even photos, poetry was always there to paint a vivid picture and put you in the middle of the chaos within the poetic mind.
It’s a great form of self expression.
Lots of people write poetry because they feel it helps them express themselves, and I can’t agree more. Poetry forces you to be authentic, to express yourself on the pen and paper in front of you because it doesn’t have the ability to betray you like a human. A poet by the name of Ocean Vuong once said “I often say that when I write, I write to the terrified versions of myself." If you need help with self-expression, I recommend poetry.
Poetry readings are some of the most powerful things someone can witness.
I took a friend that hated poetry to a poetry slam once as she said “man, I think that poet may be talking directly to me. I love this,” and since, she has been to poetry readings, events thrown for poetry, etc. Poets are also the coolest, most transparent people because their living is to write about things, yunno? (in my opinion).
It reminds us that we’re human.
It’s nothing like a really good poem about something so small like reading a book, riding a bicycle or holding a baby that feel so refreshing. By letting the reader peek into a poem’s life, poetry is in a way helping us practice empathy and helping us make the things we take for granted, well, a little more beautiful.
It helps our brains stay creative.
Yes, since poetry is not a vivid picture (some contemporary poetry does incorporate visuals but for the most part don’t tell the whole story), you have to paint the picture of the poet’s world in your head. That takes some serious creative juices to do, and I feel that if you read enough poetry, that could help your creative brain tremendously (and that doesn’t just apply to poetry).
It exposes us to things going on in the world.
If you want to know about any era, there were for sure poets around putting their observations into figurative language and sharing it with society. I’ve found myself reading poems from eras like the Renaissance, Civil Rights Era, Slavery, and many others that prove that poetry is history. Rummage around for long enough and you will see.Now go dive into some poetry, and stay cool!