Page 27 - November 2020
P. 27


                              Jack Foley

                                                 Despite popular usage,
                                          the opposite of prose is not poetry:
                                             the opposite of prose is verse.
                            Prose is a form, just as the sonnet or the villanelle is a form.
                   What we call "poetry" can occur as an element of any form, verse or prose.

                  Poetry is an intensification of words so that they leap beyond their immediate
                          meaning and evoke contexts that arise purely from imagination.
                         What makes a poem a poem is its accomplishment of this event.
                  Verbal "music"--not quite the same as the "music" produced by an instrument
                 or a singing voice--is an aspect as well so we may say that poetry is a musical,
                 linguistic evocation of otherness, of something beyond the words in their initial
                                              and immediate appearance.

        Blake:                        Williams:

        O Rose thou art sick!         so much depends

                                      a red wheel

                                      glazed with rain

                                      beside the white


                                       Pass the fish for Christ's sake.
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