What is a poetry?
Literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style and rhythm.
Basic characteristics of poetry:
- quality of beauty
- intensity of emotion
- “poetry and fire are nicely balanced in the music”
Poetry in ancient greek: ποιεω (poieo) = I create, is an art form in which human language is used for esthetical qualities in addition to, or instead of, its imaginary and linguistic content. It consists largely of oral or literary works in which language is used in a manner that is felt by its user and audience to differ from ordinary prose.
It may use condensed or compact form to transmit emotion or ideas to the reader’s or listener’s mind or ear; it may also use devices such as alliteration and repetition to achieve musical effects. Poems frequently rely for their effect on imagery, word association, and the musical qualities of the language used. The interactive layering of all these effects to generate meaning is what marks poetry.
On account of its nature of accentuated linguistic form rather than using language purely for its content, poetry is notably difficult to translate from one language into another: a possible exception to this might be the Hebrew Psalms, where the beauty is found more in the balance of ideas than in specific vocabulary.
In most poetry, it is the essence and the “baggage” that words carry (the weight of words) that are most important. These shades and classification of meaning can be difficult to interpret and can cause different readers to “hear” a particular piece of poetry differently. While there are reasonable interpretations, there can never be a definitive interpretation.