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WCW: Imagist Poetry

Updated on December 21, 2012
PDXKaraokeGuy profile image

Justin W. Price, AKA PDXKaraokeGuy, is a freelance writer, blogger, and award-nominated author based out of Juneau, Alaska.

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William Carlos Williams, 1883-1963

William Carlos Williams was an American poet, novelist, playwright, essayist and one of the fathers of the Imagist poetry, along with his good friend Ezra Pound. Imagist poetry is characterized by plain language andthe use of few words that focus on concrete images instead of abstract ideas.

Williams is best loved for his simple poems, the characteristically vulgate diction in his work, and often interesting formatting. His most famous poem is probably The Red Wheelbarrow though my two favorites are As the Cat and This Is Just to Say . As you read those poems, pay close attention to the simplicity of the language (This is Just to say was actually written as a note to his wife and stuck on the refrigerator) and how the form is used to enhance the meaning of the poems.

Some of friends and contemporaries include the aforementioned Ezra Pound, Robert Frost and William Butler Yeats.

The following poems are untitled and were written quickly while looking at pictures and thinking about how William Carlos Williams would describe them and the stories behind them. I hope you enjoy them and if you have any ideas for titles, please let me know (The last one may not be a true imagist piece because it has some abstraction). Collectively they are called WCW.

As with all poems, but especially with imagist poetry, read the poems slowly and pause at each line break.



(With apologies to William Carlos Williams)

2.


He watches

The apples fall

From Branches

Overburdened.

On the ground

They wither and rot

In the late

summer sun,

Killing the grass.

He can’t bring

Himself

To save them.

*****

1.



the swing

is rusty now

he pauses

smiles

remembers

when it wasn’t

*****


3.


As I approach

The tree

To pick

The plums

A tiny dagger

Enters

My foot.


A slow

Swelling

A dull

Throbbing

A smile

Creeping

Across my lips

As I ponder

The heroic

Honey bee

Twitching and dying

Before me

Who sacrifices

Himself

To save

His hive.



all rights reserved. copyright Justin W. price Feb 12, 2012

Thanks for Reading.

PDXKaraokeGuy, also known as Justin W. Price, is an author with Sweatshoppe Publications, which will soon re-release his poetry collection, Digging to China. Additionally, the managing editor at eFiction horror and The New Bridge online newspaper.. Husband to Andrea, father to two dogs. writer.poet.baseball fan. tattooed. He is am amateur theologian with a rabid sweet tooth. He resides in a suburb of Portland, Oregon.He has a poetry book available for Amazon Kindle, and also maintains a blog, FirstBlog. His work has been featured in the Crisis Chronicles, efiction Magazine, The Hellroaring Review, the Bellwether Review, eFiction Humor, and the Rusty Nail. Please visit his profile page for more information. Thanks!

Which of These Three Did you Like Best?

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    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 4 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      My minds eye, I like your suggestions very much. Thanks for making them!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 4 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks so much, Tenkay

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 4 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Tammy, Daddy is one of my favorite Plath pieces. Poetryfioundation has a reading she did of the poem just weeks before her suicide. It's pretty haunting. You should check it out.

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 4 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Debby, Thanks so much for your input!

    • My Minds Eye53 profile image

      My Minds Eye53 4 years ago from Tennessee

      I liked them all because I can relate to them all.

      1. Childhood Days

      2. The Falling

      3. Death of a Warrior

      Those are my suggestions. I love poetry. I write mostly in poetry form.

      Voted up and awesome

    • TENKAY profile image

      TENKAY 5 years ago from Philippines

      I like the third poem the best. Its very evocative, I could almost feel the pain of a bee sting. Thank you for sharing the untitled poems.

      Voted up and beautiful.

    • tammyswallow profile image

      Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Plath's "Daddy" is awesome. I can't wait until your paper is ready. When I was a college senior in English, I did my final paper on "Plath and the Deconstruction of Feminism." I used that poem and her best ever "Lady Lazarus." I love her use of mythology. I am so glad you wrote this piece on Williams.

    • Debby Bruck profile image

      Debby Bruck 5 years ago

      Good day Justin.

      I picked number three,

      the story of the bee,

      just because you couldn't see

      the nest beneath the tree

      all the best

      Debby

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Lutfor... thanks so much for stopping by. I'm glad you enjoy Williams!

    • profile image

      Lutfor 5 years ago

      "This is Just to Say" is the best poem I've ever read.

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Vellur, thanks for your suggestions. I like "the Brave One"

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 5 years ago from Dubai

      Excellent hub. Voted up. This hub reminds me of Amy Lowell who was also an imagist poet. Titles that popped into my mind -

      1.Bygone days

      2.Helpless

      3.The Brave One

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thank you so much, Jamie. I appreciate that!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      I appreciate the suggestions, Till. i will take them under advisement!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks Xeno. That's one of my goals!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Ryan, me too. It seem slike life was always simpler bsack in the day :-)

    • jhamann profile image

      Jamie Lee Hamann 5 years ago from Reno NV

      An incredible hub with well written poems, and a shout out WCW. Jamie

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 5 years ago from New York

      I know I'll always learn and enjoy when I read your work. Simple suggestions: #1 Remember, #2 Apple's Life #3 The Bee

      Lame, but suggestions. I really loved them and hope you write more. Voted up and SHARED.

    • Xenonlit profile image

      Xenonlit 5 years ago

      Wonderful! You are an encouragement for all of us to read more poetry.

    • Fullerman5000 profile image

      Fullerman5000 5 years ago from Louisiana, USA

      i really enjoyed the one about the swing. i remember those days at the park or the old swings i use to have in the backyard. the days when life was simple

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks a lot, lyric writer. I'm glad you enjoyed this and I'm glad I could introduce you to WCW

    • thelyricwriter profile image

      Richard Ricky Hale 5 years ago from West Virginia

      Very interesting. It is always good to learn about someone knew. I had never heard of him before, but I am not big on poetic history per say. Cool poems though pal.

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks Blossom. I appreciate the visit.

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks b. I'm glad you enjoyed this. I hope you had a fantastic Valentine's Day!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Mona, I will consider your advice about the capitals. I kind of like them, but I am also pretty lazy about changing things like that :-)

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      chs, Williams has grown on me. I love the simplicity of his work.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 5 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      I like the middle one because I've been there and done that, too. A very interesting hub.

    • b. Malin profile image

      b. Malin 5 years ago

      What a Wonderful Treat Today from you my Friend...Loved your Poems...They were all Excellent, but I really Loved # 1. And not Because it's Valentine's Day... but I Voted this Hub UP!

    • Mona Germain profile image

      Mona Germain 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Oh I loved the Red Wheelbarrow!

      I like the way you wrote about the poet and gave links for convenient reference. Awesome idea to add your own imagist poems--the first one I think is the best on for the form. I could feel the connection. The lack of captials works well too.

      But I enjoyed the vibe and imagery of the last with its "dagger" metaphor. Evocative.

      I wonder about the capitals on every line in the other two poems. It seems distracting to me, especially as you have such short lines. Rereading I can see how they do slow the read though!

      I really liked the feeling of the end of the second poem. I could really relate to his thought here.

      So well done and very enjoyable to reflect upon.

      Thanks for sharing.

    • chspublish profile image

      chspublish 5 years ago from Ireland

      From my understanding of things, great poems on your part. I would prefer yours to those of Williams - his are a bit too brief for my liking.

      You asked for suggestions for titles for yours. May I suggest (1) - Rusty is the Swing; (2)When the Apples Fall; (3) Bee Sacrifice. These will probably not reflect the true essence of your imagery. Just suggestions. Thanks for the asking.

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Duffsmom, thank you. I will tell you, the first time I read the red wheelbarrow, I didn't get it and it didn't resonate, but As the Cat and This is Just to say immediately did. I've learned to like The Red Wheelbarrow, but ti's still a distant third :-)

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks Capedium!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks Ardie. I've been very nostalgic lately. Getting older is bitter sweet. Blogged about ti this morning...

      http://pdxjpricefirstblog.blogspot.com/2012/02/twi...

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thank you Audrey!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Tammy, me too. I actually am doing a report on Plath's "Daddy" this term, so, i'll post that up when it's done, though my fave path poem might be "I am vertical". Pound had some pretty brief masterpieces, like In the Station at the Metro. Thanks for reading!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks Eddy. You too!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks Vinaya!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thansk Jen for the compliments. I'm glad you read these slowly. That's how all poetry should be read!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks Raci. You should check him out

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      pickles, I actually hate bees, but I still think they're interesting :-)

    • duffsmom profile image

      P. Thorpe Christiansen 5 years ago from Pacific Northwest, USA

      One of my favorite poets, also a pediatrician, absolutely love his work. Simple and so effective. The Red Wheelbarrow is my favorite of his works. At first reading I thought, "What?" then again and again I read the few simple lines and saw something more every time. Great Hub.

    • Capedium profile image

      Capedium 5 years ago from Texas.

      I like three better.. It is interesting...

    • Ardie profile image

      Sondra 5 years ago from Neverland

      Number one reminds me of being an adult and seeing my childhood swingset. It is rusted now but when I remember the days when it was new I smile and remember old friends and picnics with my stuffed animals! Love it as always PDX

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 5 years ago from California

      Sharing!

    • tammyswallow profile image

      Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Well done! I love this era in American poetry more than any other with the exception of Sylvia Plath. Williams was an expert in saying so much by saying so little. It took Pound and Elliot pages and pages to say as much as Williams did. This is fabulous! You chose some great ones here.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      A great hub and thanks for sharing.

      Take care and enjoy your day.

      Eddy.

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 5 years ago from Nepal

      Beautiful sets of poems. Thanks for info.

    • profile image

      jenubouka 5 years ago

      This style does carry an ever lasting punch to the gut. It is raw yet meaningful, graceful and truthful. I liked all three of your poems, and when reading them slowly, absorbing each line, I was tantalized with a powerful vision. Another great poet to read, well besides you.

    • raciniwa profile image

      raciniwa 5 years ago from Naga City, Cebu

      nice work on this one Justin...i only learn about him now...i like the imagery he tries to capture in his poetry...

    • picklesandrufus profile image

      picklesandrufus 5 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      Enjoyed reading all of them, but have a love for bees, so it was my favorite. You really have such a talent and we are the benefactors. Vote up!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Gypsy. I like those titles. In the tradition of William Carlos Williams, Maybe I should just name them after the first line in the poem. Who knows. Thanks so much for reading. It's always a blast to see you!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thanks Phoebe. I appreciate the votes!

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 5 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Voted up and awesome. I especially want to thank you for introducing me to poets I haven't known before. Titles are sometimes more difficult to write then the poems themselves because they come from the soul. I thought this: 1) Childhood Lost 2) Think Apple Wine 3)The Heroic Honey Bee. The apple wine came to me because we have four apple trees and there are so many apples that my husband steams out the juice and makes apple wine but there are still a lot of apples that go bad.

    • profile image

      Phoebe Pike 5 years ago

      Very interesting hub... unique and different. Two thumbs way up. ^_^

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Thank you very much for those kind words, Ian!

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Audrey, it looks like they've changed their share module. I haven't had any problems sharing, both others have...

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image
      Author

      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Deborah, if you voted honestly, then you voted right! Thanks for the kind words and for reading and commenting!

    • Ian Dabasori Hetr profile image

      Ian D Hetri 5 years ago from Papua New Guinea

      uh! another masterpiece by the master author. Love em for sure. Keep em coming. Voted up.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 5 years ago from California

      Ah beautiful job on these Justin--I particularly like the 1st one--I'll share if HP lets me--I don't know why, but I haven't been able to do that the past couple of days--

      Enjoy your day!

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 5 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      I hope I voted right.. Karaoke you always have the best hubs on poets.. I really enjoy reading them.. thank you so much for doing this for us.

      voted way up

      Debbie

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