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What is a Poem?

Updated on June 13, 2015

Homer (muse) playing his lyre

Homer by Philippe-Laurent Roland
Homer by Philippe-Laurent Roland | Source

How I write poems

I do not sit at the computer and stress over what word or line comes next. I write them in a poetry journal which I carry with me at times when I am away from the computer. That is when I think of the poem, when I am doing something else. I simply allow the lines, or partial lines, to flow into my mind without forcing them.

I also do not worry about having them all at once. I write them as they come. Perhaps one, two or a few at a time, it depends.





Muse of lyric poetry

Euterpe, Muse of Poetry
Euterpe, Muse of Poetry | Source

It is various words, used in various ways,

Which are brought together to say

Sometimes with emotions,

Maybe about love

Maybe about the clouds above

Whatever it is about

It can be outside in, or inside out

We take our devotions

Then write them in words

Which turn into lines, those become verse.

That is a poem.

Muse 1: Euterpe - Joe Gabriel (Original song )

Caption for video:

Euterpe was one of the nine Muses, the goddesses of music, song and dance. She was one of the muses, the daughters of Mnemosyne, fathered by Zeus. Her name was derived from the Greek words eu- and terpô, meaning "giver of much delight."

In Classical times, when the Muses were assigned specific artistic spheres, Euterpe was named Muse of lyric poetry and dance. Her attribute was the double-flute. A few say that she invented the aulos or double-flute. Though most mythographers credit Marsyas with its invention.

Do you write poems?

See results

Do you know who YOUR muse is?

See results

© 2014 The Examiner-1

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    • Uzochukwu Mike profile image

      Uzochukw Mike 2 years ago from Oba

      Nice write-up. Shared, pinned and voted up...

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I am glad that you were delighted reading this and I thank you for your comment.

      I figure that the way best for most of us is to have a journal to write our poems in.

      Kevin

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Thank you Lisa for both comment, sharing and vote. I am glad that it was interesting for you. :-)

      Kevin

    • CrisSp profile image

      CrisSp 3 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

      I noticed most poets/writers carry a journal with them. I believed, it's the way to do it and as you said in this hub, write them as they come and just let it flow.

      I, for one never leave the house without my note book (in my purse) because you'll never know when the magical muse would appear.

      Good hub. Delightful read!

    • Lisa Luv profile image

      Lisa J Warner 3 years ago from Conneticut, USA

      This was very interesting ... I enjoyed it very much!!! sharing and voting up!!

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I keep mine with me 24 hrs., but I only use when away from the PC. I know what you mean about the ideas popping in and out. I thank you for stopping by. :-)

      Kevin

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

      Another great hub Kevin. Yes it is so important to keep a journal. I have learnt to make sure my booklet is in my back at all times because ideas are always popping into my head but pop out again just as quick. Great read and voted up.

      Eddy.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Just get a journal, mark it "Poems", when you begin writing your poems then your muse will have come to you. Glad to have helped.

      Thank you for your compliments and good luck with your journal!

      Kevin - Have a happy 4th!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      I really need to stick a small journal in my purse. There are times when things hit me that I want to write about, but I lose them later. Thanks for the reminder. I loved what you said, and I really liked the poem, too. Now, how do I find out exactly who my muse is? :-)

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Nice meeting you too Abi, you take care too. You will get many answers here on HP!

      Kevin

    • profile image

      Abi Helen 3 years ago

      Well, nice meeting you Kevin, i just joined Hubpages yesterday, so I'm just a newbie, take care of me from now !! :)

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I was glad too. :-)

      Kevin

    • profile image

      Abi Helen 3 years ago

      Yes, thanks for sharing yours too ^^

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Thanks for the support Abi! I know that all of us write them in different ways. It is good to hear how you write yours - or should I say create them.:-)

      Kevin

    • profile image

      Abi Helen 3 years ago

      It's awesome :) I write poem in my dreams, then the next day I recollect and write them, sometimes ideas strick when I'm in shower XD I too have small notebook where I scribble my thoughts on it and later a poem gets created :)

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I do not write poems all of the time so I cannot answer immediately. As I said, I would probably sleep on it.

      Kevin

    • ocfireflies profile image

      ocfireflies 3 years ago from North Carolina

      Yes. I was asking about one or muses. smiles. I love it when the spirit moves me so to speak. It is like I give myself permission to sit down and write, flow, engage...and it's as if I might as well not fight it for I am not going to get any of my chores completed until I sit down and write those words.

      Kim

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I take it that you mean about my muse(s). That is a hard decision but I will sleep/meditate on it and see what comes up. When I have a topic then I write the poem, I know that much.

      Kevin

    • ocfireflies profile image

      ocfireflies 3 years ago from North Carolina

      Kevin,

      THANK YOU! Let me know what you decide.

      :-)Kim

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I never thought much about it Kim, I simply kept the journal for writing only my poems in and writing one at a time. That way I would only get ideas for one at a time.

      Hmm, I never thought about whether or not I had more than one muse.

      Thank you for reading. :-)

      Kevin

    • ocfireflies profile image

      ocfireflies 3 years ago from North Carolina

      Kevin,

      You are so wise to keep a journal with you. I have words and phrases jotted down all over the place: back of envelopes, side of a Kleenex box, scrap of piece of paper here, as well as in notebooks all over the place. I am so afraid I will forget so I write the thoughts down. I am terrified I will forget, and then when I happen upon them again, half of the time, I do not have a clue as to what I had in mind when I wrote what I wrote. Smiles. Love this hub. Just curious, are you like me in that you do not have one muse, but many?

      :-)Kim

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Thank you Joe. I will look at it and see what I can tell you.

      Kevin

    • joedolphin88 profile image

      Joe 3 years ago from north miami FL

      Great article on poetry, I just wrote a poem myself called "Lucifer's Question," would love it if you'd critique it.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Good morning Shyron, and what did you find?

      Happy Memorial Day

      Kevin

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 3 years ago from Texas

      Hi Kevin, I had to re-read some of this again, I looked for something that I thought I missed the first go around. I have a notebook by my bed and I write before I go to sleep and as soon as I wake.

      Blessings

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Hi Deb. We do all write in a different way, except for those who do not form their own styles and try to copy a famous person.

      Kevin

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I think we write in different way, but whatever works for us, works for us alone. That's the beauty of writing. It is purely one's own style.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I do the same thing Shyron. I revise my draft on Word and proofread it on HP.

      Thank you for your comments, I am glad that you enjoyed it.

      You have a nice weekend too - especially Sunday.

      Kevin

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I knew it was recently. I have written so many in the last few days I got confused. lol

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 3 years ago from Texas

      Kevin, I finish the draft of my poems at my computer also because I can check it over and make sure it is just the way I want it before I transfer it from my notes to Word and then to the HP.

      Your Poem is just beautiful, I truly enjoyed it.

      Have a Blessed weekend.

      Shyron

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Lol that was on your interesting bluebird hub.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Thank you Faith, (scratching head) gee, I thought you were one of the first ones to see this. It must have been thinking of an other one. Anyway, thank you very much for your lovely comments and votes. I am glad that you liked it.

      You have a great weekend too.

      Kevin

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Love this, Kevin. That is certainly a poem. I am sorry I missed this beautiful hub here on how poetry comes to be. For me, it can be a friend, an emotion, a thought that just comes out of nowhere, the air, a child's smile, life ... one time I was inspired by a beautiful video too with a pan flute, the color blue and light for some reason and out came a poem.

      Voted up and more and away.

      I hope you are having a great weekend.

      Blessings,

      Faith Reaper

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Yes Marie, I remember your poem showing the weasel. I liked that one. I agree with what you said. I always use the journal so that I can save my phone battery. Thanks for reading my work.

      Kevin

    • truthfornow profile image

      truthfornow 3 years ago from New Orleans, LA

      Sometimes inspiration strikes at the oddest times and you have to jot it down before you forget the words. When I don't have a notebook, I type into my phone. I love to read and write poetry because it makes you feel so much.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Thank you. Glad that you liked it. I came up with the theme to describe a poem and thought, 'Hey, why not describe how I do it?'

      Kevin

    • tirelesstraveler profile image

      Judy Specht 3 years ago from California

      Delighted when the author gives some background. Great poem. Glade to know I'm not the only one who carries a notebook. These days mine is in my phone.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I love poetry more than I knew Ruby. I know what you mean, sometimes I think of one, two or three lines at a time. It depends. I have even come up with starter lines and ending lines and then I work on the middle! When I am at the PC my mind is busy with other things and that is why I have the journal. Until I studied the muse(s) I did not know what type of poetry I wrote. I am glad that you enjoyed it.

      Kevin

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I thank you with all of my heart for your words and votes Harishprasad. I first come up with a theme and then allow the lines to come as they will. When I have them all on paper I put them on Word, edit and come up with a title and summary. Then it goes to HP. I thank you again. Have a nice day.

      Kevin

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 3 years ago from Southern Illinois

      It's funny how poetry comes to mind, sometimes just a word appears, i jot it down, then it might be a day or two later when it comes together. I think that's why i love poetry so much, it's personal, it's your heart and mind. When i'm away from the computer i always have a pen and pad close by. I loved the way you brought the muse to light. Thank you. Enjoyed.

    • Harishprasad profile image

      Harish Mamgain 3 years ago from India

      Kevin, what a wonderful poem about creation of a poem ! You have assimilated the real essence of poetry beautifully. When words flow in a natural way as if poured out from our heart, there appears a beautiful poem. As for me, something, someone , some being or some idea suddenly gives me an instant jolt, spark, revelation or impelling. All that simmers in my mind for some moments, hours or days. When I feel the urge to put that onto paper, it becomes a poem. However, it happens sometimes that the whole idea of poem gets altered when I write it down. Your beautiful poem is really a thought provoking one and well-written. Voted up with all my heart.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Thank you very much Theresa, nice to meet you too.

      I did better, I wrote it in elementary school (grin) - and started again on HP. I now publish them while I am working on my longer Hubs.

      I have tried several areas of writing to search for what interests me and to find out what I am best at. I am still not sure.

      I will check out the Hubs which you mentioned.

      Kevin

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Thanks Phyllis, you hit it on the nose! We just write it as it comes instead of forcing it. I am glad that you enjoyed it.

      Kevin

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      I thank you very much Frank. It is usually when I am doing something physical and my mind is not being used. Dreams are another good way for them to come - as long as they are not weird dreams. :-)

      Kevin

    • phdast7 profile image

      Theresa Ast 3 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      Interesting Hub and nice to meet you. I wrote poetry in my late teens and recently after 35 years, I started writing poetry again (I always wrote, but all essays and history papers). I have several small notebooks and I mostly write poems in them and then transfer them to the PC to finish.

      I occasionally have written directly into the PC and I found that tose poems needed more polishing than the ones first written by had. Interesting commentary I think on the writing process and how we process things differently when writing or typing.

      I occasionally tackle a mythological topic. I have two poems that might interest you - one about Daedalus and Icarus and one about the Greek Muses. Looking forward to reading more of your work. :)

    • Phyllis Doyle profile image

      Phyllis Doyle Burns 3 years ago from High desert of Nevada.

      Very interesting, Kevin. I also carry a little journal with me and let the poem come as and when it will. Sometimes the poem just wants to come out right away and I sit down and type it. I enjoyed reading your hub.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      very good hub Examiner.. most of my poems just come from dreams the previous night... creative way to express yourself here too :) Frank

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Hello Jodah, those notebooks do come in handy. I finish the draft of my poem at my computer because I transfer it from the journal to Word and then fine tune it at the PC. At the desk I am too busy with other things to think of the original lines. I thank you for your votes.

      Kevin

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Thank for your appreciation. I last wrote in 3rd or 7th grade and I was urged to try again here, so I did.

      Kevin

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 3 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Kevin, I also take a journal or notebook everywhere I go, because it usually when I am out that my muse comes calling. Once I have a subject come into my head the words just seem to flow. I will usually finish a raft draft of a poem while I'm out, but when I sit at my computer additional lines and words usually make themselves apparent and the finished poem soon appears on the screen. Good hub, voted up.

    • The Examiner-1 profile image
      Author

      The Examiner-1 3 years ago

      Glad to hear from you Jamie and someone else who also carries a journal.

      Kevin

    • DREAM ON profile image

      DREAM ON 3 years ago

      It is beautiful when people take words and emotions and turn them into poems . Great job showing us your talent. Thank you for sharing.

    • jhamann profile image

      Jamie Lee Hamann 3 years ago from Reno NV

      I also carry a journal. Thank you for this beautifully written ode to writing poetry. Jamie