Sunday 11 March 2012

poems, stories,

What are poems in relation to stories?

Sometimes they tell stories.
Sometimes they tell stories but it doesn't feel like all of the story.
Sometimes they don't appear to be stories at all, just a person saying what they think, or one thing that they saw or are looking at. Maybe these are moments in a story which we could imagine or invent...if we felt like it.
Sometimes they are about a state of mind...but a state of mind is something you have in the middle of events. Is that a story? Perhaps. Perhaps not.
Sometimes they are about a paradox or an irony or a comparison or a contrast or a thought about a thought (philosophy). This is the least story-ish. Other than that we are led to believe that someone is telling us this stuff. And this person has an invisible biography that invisibly surrounds the poem. This kind of poem is perhaps embedded in this poet's life story. Though it's possible to take them as just co-existing with other such thoughts in the Abstract Room. Let's go to the Abstract Room and read a paradox. Or an irony. Or a comparison. Or a contrast. Or a thought about a thought. Now I've turned that into a story. Tut tut.