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“Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought, and the thought has found words.” Robert Frost
Is there anything that touches the soul more than a beautiful rhythmic composition and flow of poetry? Is there any other kind of language that seemed so mysteriously compelling yet exciting simultaneously that can easily open up a person’s heart, such as poetry?
No other form of literature or art can evoke the mind to an imaginative experience and stimulate an emotional response, so purely just like poetry does.
There is beauty found in poems. There is life behind these rhythmic verses. And a soul is pushing and pulsing behind poetry.
Poetry Throughout History
How many people are aware of the significant impact of poetry throughout history?
Often an underestimated form of literary work, this language tool is the oldest form of human expression and literature that has survived time and remains untouched in its purest form.
Poetry comes from the Greek word poieo, meaning “I create.” Its existence runs alongside that of oral history. Studies have shown that the earliest forms of poetry were songs, chants, or prayers used in rituals or in passing down stories. Most early history records were dictated in poetic notation, as people then deemed it easier to remember words that rhyme, such as a mnemonic device.
It’s difficult to determine the exact time when this art form began, although researchers believe that poetry’s evolution started 5000 years ago in Mesopotamia with the invention and discovery of cuneiform. Interestingly, poets Homer and Virgil were admired and respected during these ancient times.
Poetry started in this period as a form of entertainment where the poets would recite their poems publicly. The Epic of Gilgamesh was created during this era, and it remains the unique form of literature that has survived and is also considered the second oldest form of literature.
Then comes the medieval period, poetry began to take a new form through rhyming couplets and ballads. Beowulf is an excellent example of an early “ballad-poem,” telling a story about a great warrior battling monsters to save his people. The medieval times also saw the rise of troubadours and traveling poets roaming from kingdom to kingdom, telling stories and tales of heroic acts, heroes and foes, creatures, and beasts.
Then came the renaissance, romantic, and neo-classical eras that paved the way for world-famous poets such as William Shakespeare, John Milton, Charles Dickens, and William Wordsworth. Modern poetry saw the birth of prominent writers such as Walt Whitman, T.S. Eliot, Robert Frost, and Maya Angelou.
Poetry for the Soul
When people feel overwhelmed and stressed, they go on a vacation or have a few drinks while catching up with friends to relax and take a break. Some people would pour themselves a glass of wine, open a book, and just while the time-away reading and staying inside the house to relax.
The same goes for poetry. When everything becomes too much to take, when the weight of the world becomes too heavy to bear, poetry provides that much-needed escape that no other form of art or literature could give.
Poetry gives that escape away from the hustle and bustle of a fast-paced life that often makes people lose touch with reality and what’s important to them. Poetry is a panacea that provides respite from a world full of anguish and burden. And poetry is a detox for the soul that gives the individual writing or reading it a breath of fresh new life; to let go of the negativities and take in all the positivity and all the beautiful things that life has to offer.
This is the power of the art of poetry. More than just a tool for communication, the art of creating poems is a natural and spontaneous form of expression that reflects the very depths of the human soul and, ultimately, life itself.
Poetry captures what the soul wants in its most authentic and straightforward form. Where social interaction fails, this art form takes over. That is why poets such as William Shakespeare or Elizabeth Browning use these rhythmic verses to convey the language of love because they see poems as an effective medium to manifest what they’re feeling.
Poetry can create influence. It can transform minds and hearts, and it can heal the wounded. No one can talk about the “heart” without touching on this literature, and no one can speak about the soul without talking about poetry.
Poetry in a Book
Wonder Streams of the Soul exemplifies the majestic impact of poems in this book collection of inspiring poems and philosophical passages. Craig Carpenter Downer delves deeply into the true nature and spirit of what life is all about in this poetic journey that could only be expressed in this spontaneous, free-spirited work of art – and the language of the human soul.
This is a wonderful tribute to the true art and I daresay science of poetry and I am so pleased that my book Wonder Streams of the Soul is included in this with praise. I did and still do strive to be true to poetry’s wonderful tradition and to honor all the great poets and their expressions that have preceded my work and to further their very vital and important goal!