“One Art” by Elizabeth Bishop (#poetry)

I’ve been reading How to Read a Poem and Fall in Love with Poetry by Edward Hirsch and when I read “One Art” by Elizabeth Bishop, I fell in love, to quote my dad. (It’s copyrighted so I can only provide a link to it on poetryfoundation.org.)

And then that very day, Austin Kleon just happened to mention an article in the NY Times where they dissected it. What???

I so related to the message of the poem itself, but what then intrigued me was the form of this particular poem—villanelle—nineteen lines divided into six stanzas—five tercets and one quatrain—turning on two rhymes and built around two refrains. The first and third lines rhyme throughout, as do the middle lines of each stanza. The first and third lines become the refrain of alternate stanzas and the final two lines of the poem.

I don’t usually go for tightly-formed poems, only if my instincts guide me into those same forms. Or maybe Mr. Clukas’ poetry class sunk in deeper than I’d thought – lol!

But I must write one of these. The concept is just so lyrical. And because it is a strict form, I probably won’t do it in the middle of the night on my iPhone, but will, indeed, have to sit at my computer and think it through.