Bad Poetry: Making up rules when convenient

April 9, 2021

Poetry seems to be pretty schizophrenic,
With rule makers, rule fakers, and anyone who wants to run with it
Some people are militant, saying rule breakers go to hell!
Others obey only the rules convenient for themselves.

There are some who only look at rhythm and meter,
Where anyone who deviates is somehow a poetry cheater.
Even in rhythm there are syllable counters,
For others it is the cadence and the emphasis that matters.

And then, there is the complicated examination of rhyme,
High brow, Lowbrow or just for lyrics in the song of the time.
It is what most people think of when they think of the genre,
Making up words to rhyme is bad form and quite far beyond-ya.

The ones who include it all, are the fine poets and the elite,
Saying they are professionals, set on keeping amateurs to the street.
And there are the ones, who throw all the rules out the door,
Like modern art, free verse is accessible only to those whom it is for.

There are closet poets hiding their work on their shelves,
Hiding behind prose they write only for themselves.
And then there are the masses who do it just for fun,
Not a care in the world, expressing themselves in the sun.

So what have we learned about this thing that we write?
Enjoy what you like, or try to fight the good fight?
It seems you can write just about anything shared in a coterie.
So then does this rambly mess justify the “bad” poetry?