Poetry topic idea: perspective

Today’s poetry topic idea is perspective.  If a poet writes a poem from a person’s point of view, the idea of perspective can be influential, although in the background.

Sometimes, a poet might be writing about a detached event, such as rain.  The poet might write that the rain is either positive or negative, depending on how they themselves, or the subject of their poem, views the rain.  For example, a poet writing about a farmer, might describe rain positively, whereas, a poet writing about someone participating in an outdoor event, might describe rain negatively.

In other instances, there are two parties and some connected event.  Think about two people arguing over something.  The something might be the same, but each person views it differently.  There are many situations where two people can be involved in something and see it differently.  Imagine a situation for example, where one person gives a gift, that the receiver of the gift resents.  The gift giver thought they were doing something good, but the receiver saw it as bad.

Interestingly, a poet might not realize that they are applying perspective in their poetry.  They might not realize that they are writing about something from a certain point of view.

Some ideas for using perspective in poetry might be:

  • A poet could write a pair of poems, one poem looking at something from one perspective and the other poem looking at it from the other. For example, a poet could write about a wedding.  They might write one poem where someone at the wedding viewed the marriage positively and another poem where someone viewed it negatively.
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  • A poet could find a poem they previously wrote, examine it for perspective, and write a new poem from a different perspective. For example, a poet might find a poem they wrote where they describe the weather negatively.  They might think about someone who experienced the same weather, but saw it positively.  They could write a poem from their perspective.
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  • A poet could try to write a new poem from a perspective that they don’t have. For example, they could write about a political issue from the other side’s point of view.
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