NaPoWriMo 2016: day thirteen


Day thirteen!

Today we are going to play with line breaks!

A line break is simply the end of a line. If you end a line mid-
clause (like I just did there), it's called enjambment. (E.
E. Cummings is the mast
er of this technique.) Ending a line
at a natural pause (as I did there)

is called a "end break."

(The pause can be a comma, a natural feeling pause,
or a period.)

Line breaks create the shape of a poem.

Line breaks can propel the poem forward (or keep it feeling slow) in a way that suits the poem and the poet.

So an experiment today:

write a poem with line breaks as you normally would
then after
chop each line
in half
and write it in a new way
then stick multiple lines into each other so your lines are very long
and see how that feels.

then add space

or less space
between some lines
play with line breaks

You might end up with four (or more) versions of today's poem.

(This can be done with haiku, too - do the first version as a traditional haiku, then change how many lines you have. See how different it makes the poem feel, even though the syllables stay the same.)

Start from the poem you need to write today, the poem that wants to come out. Let it come out the way it naturally would.

And then play with it, after you finish. Not editing the words, but changing the line lengths and adding in spaces to see what it does to the poem. (Just noticing. And you may feel that one version is better, but other people might have a different opinion and that's ok, too.)

Have fun experimenting with line breaks today!

Or not, no need to follow the prompt if you're not feeling up to playing with today's poem. What matters is the daily writing and the poem that is waiting inside you, to be written today.

Happy poeming!