Detail of "The Parnassus" by Raphael‘In Praise of Formal Poetry’ by James A. Tweedie The Society May 5, 2020 Beauty, Culture, Poetry 5 Comments In the midst of free-verse critics’ Smug, inchoate analytics __Seasoned with self-righteous pedantry, There are poets who are striving To achieve success reviving __Classical and formal poetry. Hail the Muse of Mount Parnassus! Apuleius’ Golden Ass is __Overshadowed by Homeric verse. Celebrate the works of Horace, Aeschylus and Grecian Chorus, __Virgil even sounds good in reverse! Shakespeare, Milton, Coleridge, Dryden, Shelly, Tennyson, Lord Byron __Wordsworth, Browning, Johnson, Keats, and Poe Chaucer, Spencer, Wilde, Rosetti, Kipling, Keats and Phillip Sydney __Famous poets everyone should know. Sonnet, ode, quatrain, sestina, Triolet and terza rima— __Elegy, pantoum, and roundelay, Cinquain, villanelle and rondeau, Epigram and ovillejo, __Forms that poets use to have their say. Narrative or episodic, Poetry should be rhapsodic, __Whether it amuses or inspires. Rhythmic meter’s perfect timing When combined with perfect rhyming __Sparks a flame drawn from celestial fires. Substantive, profound, or Pyrrhic Tender, militant, or lyric, __Formal poetry, like music, sings Never tedious or boring Poems should, instead, be soaring, __Lifting us to heaven on muses’ wings. So then, gentle reader, heed me, If I were a poem, read me, __Savor my rhapsodic melody. Then into your heart invite me, With both rhyme and rhythm write me, __And submit me to the SCP!* *Society of Classical Poets James A. Tweedie is a recently retired pastor living in Long Beach, Washington. He likes to walk on the beach with his wife. He has written and self-published four novels and a collection of short stories. He has several hundred unpublished poems tucked away in drawers. NOTE TO READERS: If you enjoyed this poem or other content, please consider making a donation to the Society of Classical Poets. The Society of Classical Poets does not endorse any views expressed in individual poems or comments. CODEC News:Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window) 5 Responses Sally Cook May 5, 2020 Dear James – Very nice ! Poetry binds us all together, and creates a civilized point of view. Without poetry we are lesser, duller; more like Darwin’s apes. Destrroying form in poetry and the figurative in painting is like cutting off your nose to spite your face. What’s the point? To me, the purpose of such inanity is to make us less, not more, and that is evil. Krrp at it! Reply Julian D. Woodruff May 5, 2020 This is splendid, Mr. Tweedie— Sweetest music for the needy Ears of folks a-starving on free verse. Use those formes fixes or amend ‘em, Disassemble or extend ‘em. Rhyme and Rhythm, help us lift the curse Of self-centered, self-contented Belchings, often half demented, Cooked up in some verbal bakery Where opacity is valued, False profundity is ballyhooed— Smug and arbitrary fakery. Reply James A. Tweedie May 5, 2020 An inspired response, Mr. Woodruff. And thank you for rhyming my name with something besides, weedy, greedy, seedy, or yes indeedy. Reply Rod Walford May 5, 2020 Thank you James I enjoyed reading “In praise” and I have to say I enjoyed Julian’s response too! I was thrilled to see you made mention of Lord Byron. The somewhat self-righteous free verse brigade won’t like it of course but then I imagine they will only see it if they’ve come to SCP to learn how to write real poetry. Well done Sir! Reply Sultana Raza May 10, 2020 Mr Tweedie’s poem is one of the most significant poems on the state of poetry today. It was much needed and well said! Also, Julian Woodruff’s response though a bit tongue in cheek, is well-written and relevant as well. Reply Leave a Reply to Sally Cook Cancel ReplyYour email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. Δ This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.