Think Like a Poet

If we all begin to think more like poets, contemporary communication will be transformed.

I don’t mean to say that texts should rhyme, nor that Instagram captions should be written in meter.  What I mean is that before writing anything, we should pause briefly to reflect on the moment and choose the right words to convey what we really mean.

The poet is a shape-shifter whose work can be approached as imagery, song, story, performance or even a sort of science (scansion analysis).  Above all, though, the poet’s work is personal – to the poet him or herself and to the reader.  This multiplicity lends itself naturally to the complexities of the modern identity

Poetry is, like say, Facebook, a social media. It records an instant, can spur people to action, bridges vast geographic areas.  Unlike say, Facebook, poetry – even bad poetry – is viscerally evocative. Its power is in the poet’s pause, in the poet’s vocabulary – things that we can cultivate easily.

Perhaps if we thought more like the poet, even our mundane conversations would mean more.

Perhaps if we thought more like the poet, even ugly moments would be infused with a little beauty. Perhaps if we thought more like the poet, if we expanded our sensibilities in similar ways, we would find more reasons to create and edit in our daily lives. 

Perhaps if we thought more like the poet, the weight of our carefully chosen words would bring us light.

Perhaps if we considered our words more carefully before putting them out in the world, we would stop taking for granted that we are not listening to one another.  That we are not listening to ourselves.