Thursday, October 1, 2009

How to Write a Beat Poem - take two

1. Most importantly, the Beat poem is written to a rhythm that exists outside the poem. To illustrate, you can read this to a metronome-like beat:
I think I'm going somewhere
mountainous or scaly

that's right
a mountainous or scaly place

that's where I think I'll go.

When I find the time: when I find the time.

But this version contains the beat within the language. It needs no external beat.

I think that I will go
somewhere where there's mountains
roaming the distance and sweeping the land
where time no longer threatens
lost outside revolving hands

You get the idea.

2. Beat poetry has the sense of being spoken in the moment.
3. True to its philosophy of being-in-the-moment, Beat poetry never stops to make sense, explain or think twice - but just speaks in the moment. This speech is seen as action.

It is only one philosophy in the vast controversy of poetic styles.


  1. How would I find something to inspire what to write and how would it come together?

  2. Anything can be inspiration. Find something you're passionate about, and write about that. If you're having trouble, read newspaper articles on anything that catches your interest and let that inspire you. In terms of how it comes together, there is no specific way. The best thing to do is just write at first, and then go back and edit it later for sound and rhythm