Montreal-based poet Sina Queyras shows you how to match form and content. Try it!
“Creating the Clay”
This quick exercise works as a way to quickly generate material for a poem and emphasizes that control writers have over matching form and content. You can use the same content in a variety of ways.
But first generate the content. Do each of these exercises in bursts, point form, not prose.
1. Without saying what it is, describe something that you saw in the past 24 hours that struck you.
2. Recount a conflict that you have that is ongoing, unresolvable. You need not attribute it to yourself, but make it convincing.
3. Recount a family, or social, or cultural narrative that is concise and feels complete.
Now choose a form you want to explore. Using phrases from the above three pools of material, try at least two different poems using materials from all three pools.