Poetry Within The Literary Genres
"Memory is not so brilliant as hope, but it is more beautiful, and a thousand times as true." -- Prentice
POETRY: A Vital Genre of Literature
I believe, to a layman, poetry can be understood as a set of ideas, structured in short or long lines and sometimes with stanzas. Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary of English Language, the 7th edition, simply refers to poetry as a collection of poems or poems in general; or in other words, something with a beautiful and elegant quality. It also added that poetry is synonymous to verse. It has been written and documented that poetry belongs to one of the three genres of literature _ drama, poetry and prose. It is the genre of literature that citizens so many unbelievable forms of brevity with the aid of the merciful poetic license.
Poetry is as old as time with a long history dated back to the Sumerian epic of Gilgamesh, the Chinese Shijing and down to the Homeric epics, the Odyssey and the Iliad. It was likewise said to be maintaining an oral form until the advent of written words, when poetry harnessed the privilege to as well live in a written form _ which could be straight, or slant or wobble or whatever.
I will also love to say here and now, that the knowledge of poetry goes beyond the reasoning or explanation of a single medulla oblongata. The explanation of it must be diverse and the diversities are evident through the different ways in which people have been spelling the meaning out. This, I strongly believe, is the major reason a poem will be correctly interpreted by different people in different ways and this has also been the reason behind the differences in the poetic definitions of renounced poets:
“Emily Dickenson said, “If I read a book and it makes my body so cold, no fire ever can warm me, I know that is poetry;” and Dylan Thomas definedc poetry this way: “Poetry is what makes me laugh or cry or yawn, what makes my toenail twinkle, what makes me want to do this or that or nothing, ’” quoted Mark Flanagan of contemporarylit.about.com
Poetry is the most vital of the genres of literature. When placed side by side with the two other genres, it is the most relevant and the most needed. It can be embedded in the other genres of literature, by taking the form of epigram to live in the belly of a drama or prose. Any time, any day, poetry will always be ready to be in unison with both drama and prose; mostly by taking the form of a song to add colour to an acted drama or prose. It must also be noted that some features of poetry are borrowed to season or spice up the two other genres of literature.
The importance of poetry can never be overemphasized. According to the comment of Perspective at answers.yahoo.com/questions/index on the topic: Importance of Poetry, “Mainly it benefits you and releases stress but with the right words could change the world.” Poetry gives solace to the grieve, answer to the seekers, strength to the lovers and music to the leisure. So, no matter the shape and look poetry chooses to wear; be it ballad, epic or lyrical, it must always be remembered that poetry is what we live for.