Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Hugo book & writing process

The main idea that I will take away from the Hugo book is that poets need not be faithful to reality but should instead be faithful to language when writing a poem. He stressed in several chapters and with several different examples the idea that truth will conform to music. I had never thought of writing this way, and I found that when I kept this in mind while I was writing it was really helpful. It doesn't matter if the population of a town is nineteen, if you need to use the word seventeen, you should and the poem will still be accurate.
Another aspect of The Triggering Town that really stuck for me was that I could really feel his passion for poetry and for teaching. It is a huge part of his life and he shared many ideas that work for him, some of which I can apply to my writing, others that I just found interesting. Along these lines, the chapter titled Assumptions stood out and showed me an aspect of writing I hadn't ever considered but seems like it could be really beneficial.
My process for writing poems isn't the same for every poem. For this class, since for the majority of our poems we have had prompts, I start by jotting down a few ideas I could go with for the poem. From that, I pick of the ideas and write some words that relate to it that I like or some facts or images I think of when considering the topic. Usually at that point I hit a wall. I have to walk away from it for hours, if not a day. Then, for most of the poems, the best ideas I have come to me when I'm laying in bed about to fall asleep. So I end up getting up and jotting them down then putting all my thoughts together in the morning.


  1. "stressed in several chapters and with several different examples the idea that truth will conform to music" Thats exactly what i got out of hugo too. Its how a poem flows, and sounds rather than the inital facts.

    I get a lot of ideas before i go to bed too, its like my mind is trying to wind down and im like Oh that would be a good idea! or yeah i have to use that line in something! I agree