It is interesting to note that once upon a time ‘Poetry’ was thought of as one of the most beautiful and probably the most important art forms in existence. Whereas, nowadays it could be questioned as to whether it is as widely appreciated. In today’s date if you tell someone that you read or write poetry, you are just as likely to be met with a judging laugh as you are with admiration. After all, we are living in a time where a fictional title like ‘Fifty Shades Of Grey’ is a literary the best seller!
Unfortunately, today when you will browse on internet you would find several blogs talking about poetry going out of fashion and headings such as ‘Is Poetry Dying’ will be gaining much of the readers’ attention. However, the fact of the matter is that poetry is not dying as it is merely changing. Poetry is essential to human life. It allows us to convey our thoughts and emotions through beautiful, sometimes horrible, words. We turn to poetry to express the inexpressible. Evolution is a wonderful thing and as technology has evolved, so has poetry.
Well, if you think about it then you will realise that it is the age-old tradition of an older generation begrudging the differences of the new generation. However, poetry is defined as a literary work in which the expression of feelings and ideas is given intensity by the use of distinctive style and rhythm, poems collectively or as a genre of literature. To say that just because poems are no longer strictly from a poetry book means that the art form is dead could not be further from the truth!
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The emergence of Instagram poets is proof that things are actually changing and they are not dying off. There are several poets across the world, who posts their poetry on Instagram and the readers too consider them to be thought-provoking and give their review of their poems in form of comments. The ‘Indie Poets’ have attracted much recognition and praise for their work on Instagram and other social media platforms. The creation of this platform was like a megaphone so that these new-age poets could amplify their poetry. Most of these poets have reached a wider audience, that too around the world due to this evolution while the integrity of traditional poetry remained intact.
The present era of the 21st century has certainly not killed poetry; in fact, it has given it a new lease of life to the genre of poetry. Poems are now simpler and shorter, yet still relatable and moving. Instead of having typical 7 stanzas of 4 to 6 lines, some poets now prefer to have a poem comprised of only 8 to 10 lines. This idea of composing short and sweet poems has worked out to be extraordinary for many of the new-age poets!
There is no denial in the fact that poetry certainly has become less visible on the shelves of libraries and bookstores. As it has to compete with things like TV programmes, films, web series, books and music. However, it is definitely not been eradicated and as an art form, poetry puts us back in touch with our humanity. It can help you see yourself in someone else’s struggle and thus you begin to understand and appreciate their strength more.
Writing poetry has become a therapeutic way to express inner thoughts and feelings for many of us. It is used as a way to improve mental health and inspire positive thoughts. Those who read or write poetry say the art form helps them make sense of their lives. Poetry has never been and will never be one definitive way. Just like humanity, it is constantly changing, constantly learning, and constantly growing. However, some elements of poetry will never change. The raw emotion it evokes the beautiful pictures it creates and the long-standing societal impacts it can cause will be around forevermore. For as long as we have emotions and thoughts, we will have poetry!
Written By NEEL PREET – Author of the Books, Voice From The East (2016); Journey With Time Place And Circumstances (2018) & Indian Defence Files (2021).