Warm Up Stretches

Last month, I attended a poetry workshop. After most of the others there had shared their work, and had constructive feedback, I shared mine. I got told that I demonstrated “good use of language”, but that my offering was “not poetry”. The instructor didn’t explain what I was doing wrong, just that I was, definitively, wrong.

That hurt, far more than it should. Some people are jerks, and I know that. But it really hurt to have my work shot down with no explanation.ย When I saw this challenge, I knew that I had the perfect way to put that hurt behind me, and get back to writing.

So here is my warm-up piece, a kidney punch to the ogre of insecurity. Warning: naked sarcasm ahead.


The English is good, and the grammar correct,
But this is not poem.
The rhythm is fine, and the stresses line up,
But this is not a poem.
The metaphor struggles on atrophied limbs,
The rhyming is weak, and the words just don’t sing,
And it’s not the way I would have written the thing;
No, this is not a poem.

3 thoughts on “Warm Up Stretches

  1. Gee, that sucks…. Maybe the lesson is to always ask, but why?
    Poems can be any shape or form. They don’t have to rhyme, they don’t have to be punctuated, they don’t have to be mitred – that’s my understanding… for what it’s worth. Wishing you all the best and try to let that one go ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Thanks, ajanta. I didn’t realise how upset I was about the whole thing until I wrote this poem and saw the level of anger in it.

      However, having ranted my little rant, I can make light of it again. I promise that my marathon poems will be less snark-laden; and that I myself will leave only constructive comments on other people’s work.

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