Digital Mini Reviews | You Say Poetry, But I Say Misery!

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48 comments

  • Well, all I can say is that here they don’t force Poetry on us at school😅 That said, I’ve tried reading poetry at times, but I’ve never really understood it, and can’t say I like it. So this is something I know I will never be checking out I’m sorry to say😅😅

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  • Looks like your second chance to poetry in digital reading phase didn’t turn out well. 😁 I don’t read poetry as I don’t think I can interpret it right. I tried once, i didn’t get it and I’m not going to read poetry ever. But I agree I like it in music.

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  • Ha man! Bummer! Wel I’ve only ever read Les Fleurs du Mal and it didn’t make em want to read poetry even if from time to time a poem I read will move me.

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  • I’ve always struggled with poetry, especially the more modern kind. I’m old fashioned in that I prefer it to rhyme, like in music. I got into studying some of the more classic verse when I was at university. Shakespeare’s sonnets and plays won me over for a while, then some of Blake’s poems. But I have to admit that I hardly read it these days. Do you like any of the older poets?

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    • The most modern kind, these “Instagram” poems, don’t have much in common with the classic ones that I’ve run into throughout my life, whether it’s Shakespeare or anyone else! I have a list of classic poets that I want to visit in the near future just so I can discover poetry properly but these collections made me realize that they just weren’t for me hahah

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  • I’ve never heard of Instagram poetry collections. Over the years, including those in school, I’ve found I just don’t get most poetry but that there has always been some that really resonated with me. Granted, I’ve rarely read self-published work, mostly sticking to published “classics”. I fully acknowledge there are many people out there who never get a chance through established publishing channels who are just as good or better than any officially published author, but there’s also a much, much larger pool of far less worthwhile work out there. So I’ve tended to use publishers, or the idea of being a classic, as a way of narrowing in on stuff perhaps more worth my time, knowing I’ll risk overlooking something good and sometimes reading something not so good. But considering how little poetry I end up reading I find that works for me. I actually enjoy the large poetry anthologies they’d assign us in college because they had such a diverse and large number of works to try. From there I could look for works by specific poets. I suppose it makes sense given how much speculative fiction I read that I’ve always enjoyed the poetry of Edgar Allan Poe (A Dream Within a Dream is one of my favorites). For the last few months I’ve had a book by Robert Browning sitting near my computer and I’ll occassionally read another poem from it.

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    • I think you’d be stunned by what they’re like, especially if you’ve got a general idea of what classic poems were like. It stuns me that these really pass for poetry for newer generation.

      When I started my blog, I started off reading and reviewing a large batch of self-published work too, not really knowing how the industry worked until later. I don’t do it much at all nowadays. I’ve got my favourite publishers and stick to their books, especially for SFF. The 2 self-published “Instagram poetry” collection featured here were simply recommended through Kindle and I picked them up without thinking twice, assuming that they were known by those who read and loved these kinds of books too. I find that the risk of picking up a mediocre story within self-published works is just too high for me now to risk going there anymore too…

      I like the idea of reading a poem here and then from a collection of classics. I think it’s something I’ll end up doing too. I have a huge Edgar Allan Poe volume that I’ve been dying to try but never made time for it too. I should use that strategy for it…

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  • I didn’t hate poetry at school. It’s something that I enjoyed analysing. That’s till I got to university and realised that my complete absence of any musical ability meant that I couldn’t understand beats in a poem and what stressed/unstressed sounds were, amongst other things.
    Fast forward to today and I feel like modern poetry, as you so eloquently put it, is strategically placed words and might be better as spoken word (which I think is better).
    Basically not sure if I’ve found any modern poetry I like either 😅

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    • I can only imagine how sophisticated some poetry actually is when you know how to break them down, but being able to do so does seem to open up a whole other level of analysis that makes reading them so much more interesting! 😮

      It’s true that as spoken word, a lot of these would seem so appealing though. While I doubt I’ll try any more of these ever again, I am excited to just stick to more “classical” poems that have been published.

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      • I’m still holding out hope for some good modern poetry! I recently read The Poet X, and while some of it fell into that ‘instagram’ style of poetry, I liked a lot of it (the author and character do slam poetry but it worked well written down too).

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  • Like you, I wasn;’t a fan of poetry while in school either. For the very same reason – 9/10 my interpretation of it would be “wrong.” I think I was just too creative for my teachers to handle.
    Then, during my uni years, I dabbled in writing poems myself. I received mostly positive feedback. I have not really written poetry since…
    I don’t choose it over prose, but I don’t mind it. IF I can get something out of it and make sense.
    When it comes to Instagram poetry, I heard that people do that to introduce poetry to the masses. Kids these days are not really interested in lofty writing. The classics we enjoyed, they see as boring. Hell, some don’t read and are proud of it. So, some people think it’s their duty to educate such people using the media used by the newbies. And you know what? I think it does reach the intended target audience. (But not necessarily us)

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    • I can somehow imagine you too perfectly, giving the teacher a hard time with your out-of-the-blue interpretations! 😛

      I’d love to see you give us a piece of poetry in one your posts someday, maybe double-challenge yourself in doing a prompt, but in the format of a poem! 😀

      I agree with you. I think the target audience of these Instagram poems is perfect, after all, they’re quick to read when you land on such pictures, you don’t need to think hard, they force you to relate to them with recent events in your own life, and they indeed work for many. Definitely not meant for us though…

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  • I had so much fun reading this Lashaan, though I’m sorry you didn’t really like any of them 😂 It’s true however that the things we often see on Instagram can seem quite catchy but may be a bit “empty” in the end.. It would be really interesting to have your opinions on “proper” poetry books though 😊 Thanks for sharing!

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    • Hahahahahah I would’ve laughed at myself too. You should’ve seen me throw my arms in the air reading some of these “poems”… I couldn’t believe that people would ADORE these. I do plan on reading more “serious” poetry books in the near future though. I need to fix this… Échec catatrosphique… as soon as possible hahaha 😀

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  • Haha I can totally relate 😂 I always had a hard time understanding poetry when they’re so hard to read! Except for musical lyrics, of course. And as for the “Instagram” poems, I agree that they can be so short and blunt that I wonder how they even made any money 😅 However I really enjoyed Shel Silverstein’s poetry when I was younger. They can be so fun to read because they’re so punny, and they also come with some hilarious cartoon drawings!

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    • It’s especially those instances were a teacher would try and make us understand a certain poem only for everyone to be wrong that made me less inclined to WANT to understand any poem afterward hahah

      I have nooooo idea if these poetry collections even bring them much money, but I guess it’s more than nothing at all, to just collect a bunch of Instagram posts into one, with some photos to make it a bit prettier too.

      I definitely plan on reading more classical poets just to cleanse my pallet too hahaha Thanks for reading, Rebecca! 😀

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  • Sry, I couldn’t help laughing at your reviews and in particular your post title, but I do of course feel bad that your venture into poetry didn’t turn out more successful. I don’t read poetry, doubt very much how I would get on with it, seeing that I sometimes struggle with novels, which are written in an overly poetic language. Probably, there is poetry out there that each of us would enjoy, but do we have the patience to search for it? Based on your recent experience, I am leaning towards no…

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    • Hahahahaha I laughed in misery through these books too! 😛 I also find my title superior to all the verses from these poetry collections… None of them ever rhymed too! And here I thought I’d have fun rhyming things in my head while reading. Nop… Not even!

      I’m thinking of giving more classical poets a try in the future, but I’m definitely done with these “Instagram” poets hahahah

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      • Absolutely, your title rhymed and it had a catchy rhythm as well – I can so envisage an angry rapper yelling “You Say Poetry, but I Say Misery” accompanied by aggressive hand gestures! 😁

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  • I can so relate to this. Poetry was not my forte in school, especially when you had the class at 9am with a teacher that had the most monotone voice in the world. To this day, I’m still wary of poetry and while I follow quite a few of the instagram poets, I’ve only ever bought one of their collections and that was mainly down to the illustrations haha.

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    • Tell me about it. I never got a teacher passionate and inspiring enough to make the poems sound good too hahahah I think coming across these on Instagram will make it much more tolerable though. Can’t blame you for the illustrations though! Those are indeed pretty exquisite. 😛

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  • LOOOL, I love this! 😂😂😂

    I’m honestly impressed you managed to torture yourself with so many of these “poets” and their little monstrosities.

    I like poetry, or rather like reading certain poets. I feel the best of them have an uncanny ability to distill universal experience into a string of very personal words. Macrocosm in microcosm. But they are rare, as rare as true masters anywhere. The rest of the modern “poets”? I think they’re not unlike Myers and her Twilight, or Harlequin romances, only with less words 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hahahahah you know me and self-inflicted torture. I’ve done plenty of it with comics! But, it was much more tolerable here, especially considering how short these are. Each page could have “poems” of maybe… not even 4-5 words, sometimes! That’s what goes for “Instagram” poems nowadays!!!

      I absolutely agree with you though. That ability to create macrocosm within microcosm is what I thoroughly prefer! And I fully share your opinion of modern “poets”. It’s definitely not my cup of tea. 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  • Well, I think it’s safe to say that I will stay far away from all of these. Poetry isn’t my thing at all. I still can’t get behind poems that don’t rhyme. I’m impressed that you gave the genre several opportunities, though. Great reviews!

    Liked by 1 person

  • School spoiled poetry for me too, so I’ve only read a few and don’t think I’m great at judging them. I tend to lean more toward those with an obvious rhyming scheme. I haven’t read any of these, but I think I have a collection by Makenzie Campbell. Enjoyed reading your mini reviews here though.

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    • Now that I’ve eliminated “Instagram” poetry from my reading queue, I’ll probably stick to classic poetry unless I realize they are for me either hahah Hope you have a better time with Campbell’s collection, Zezee! Thanks for reading! 😀

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  • I recently had a conversation with a friend of a teen about highschool English. We discussed the whole idea of teachers asking a student what they thought it meant and then telling them they were wrong. I do enjoy some poetry, but it has to have some form, substance and make me love or appreciate something. I do not want angst. I think someone roped you in to those books with Instagram Poetry.

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    • I definitely don’t enjoy the thought of a teacher telling students what’s right or wrong when it comes to such a subjective form of literature. I’m with you there. Form and substance are what I need too. Anything that makes me reflect, connect. I actually plunged deeper into these instagram poetry because of Amazon since I had JUST started my subscription to their subscription and they gave me recommendations based on Rupi Kaur’s poetry, which incidentally was a collection that I actually enjoyed! Thanks for passing by, Carla! I appreciate it. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  • I could so relate to this post. I wasn’t a huge fan of poetry while I was growing up. My parents once gifted me “Where the sidewalk ends” by shel silverstein for my 8th birthday. The poem never made sense, but I could connect to it now when I go back and read it. Before starting my blog, I used to a lot of poetry as I was going through a hard time. It was my way of coping with my emotions.

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    • I honestly do think that some poetry collections work so much better when we’re suddenly emotionally-vulnerable. The words are given meaning based on currently-ongoing feelings and experience and that’s probably how many people end up adoring what otherwise seems so cliche and vague! 😮 Thanks for sharing, Rosy!

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