Many people have asked me why I prefer to write poetry over fictional stories. Why, they wonder, do I choose the more difficult of the creative writing genre? Poetry is, as most realize, an acquired taste. I choose it because it is a taste not only that I enjoy, but it is a taste that takes me outside of what I immediately perceive as possible. Poetry to me, unlike fiction, takes me deeper into the mysteries of life, in places that are not readily expressed or easily accessed. These are the places where there are hidden treasures unspoken, forbidden, or lost. They have been untouched by language, music, or even breath. Poetry takes us to the strange and uncanny, because it is strange. Because we are strange. Because love is strange.
So poetry is not more difficult. It just takes us to a place where we are not used to going, but we can go there, if we want to and we try. Going there, in fact, will take us into places within ourselves that we only dreamed of, places where anxiety, depression, emotional problems melt away. And why do they melt away? Because we will finally find ourselves at home, in a place where we belong. All it requires is a shift in consciousness from this third-dimensional reality that we think is reality, the reality that we think is hard and difficult and loveless, full of war, and pain and suffering and delusion. That reality, that reality, is the one that is not real. The true reality, the place where poetry blooms, is a place where the delusion unfolds into something magical, breathtaking, cosmic, and full of divine grace, where even the greatest pain in your life makes sense and where all the death and misery holds a key to not only truth but bliss, not only for you, but for all.
For the places where poetry can grow are untouched. These places are accessed from within you and they are as the purest water or purest air. They are the scared places of the world, and they are accessed from within our heart spaces, through the soul, in the light of what many call Source light. The subject matter of poetry cannot be seen within the three-dimensional form of light that bathes this lower world. No. Poetry has the multiverse and the multidimensional as its subject matter: the place where true creation happens. Science, fiction, stories that reject poetry: all of these can be wonderful, but they spend their time on creating more stories in this world, the world in which we suffer, not the world as the world that is our true heaven, the birthright of all. And that is why poetry makes people uncomfortable. Poetry calls into our own multi-dimensional intuition of ourselves; that part of us that makes us a bit uncomfortable, because we know on subconscious level, that the life we see through the five senses and this mind that analyzes them is living in a lie, a virtual world that has no meaning in and of itself. It is difficult for people to want to face that truth, although we enjoy movies that suggest it like the Matrix, which minimally dances with poetry. Plato as well spent his life working in the “matrix” and helping students who were willing to rise above it, from a life of victim-hood and suffering, to a life of wonder and goodness and true consciousness.
Furthermore, poetry calls us to speak in ways that we do not usually speak. It seems to speak in riddles that are deliberately designed to be obscure and strange, like a puzzle that takes a tremendous amount of effort to unfold. But that is just it. It is a puzzle, this mystery, this love, and if the poet makes the mystery too clear and recognizable, the curiosity will never be evoked, the wonder, the desire to seek into the stranger regions of life. A poet that writes with clarity is not writing poetry. He is generally writing impressions or feelings. Still the poet will strive to make the mystery clear, by evoking the questions as accurately as possible. The questions are more beautiful than the answers, after all. And what question is greater than the question of love, of life, of your life, itself?
But know that there is nothing wrong with expressing beautiful feelings and impressions clearly in the world. Yet that is the state of our reality now, in the third dimension. We have psychology to feed us clear explanations of why we feel a certain way. We have clear solutions like drugs and therapy that tell us that they will make us feel better. Psychology gives a story to explain our suffering in an intellectual way and paints a very crude picture of the nature of the pain and pleasure within us. But do they take us closer to who we are, or further away? Do we not begin to feel numb, a numbness that simply trains itself to be content with a life of longing, regret, chasing desires or trying to suppress them? A life of dreams cast aside, deep sadness and resignation subdued only by inane distractions and self-righteous justifications. We no longer have time for love or poetry. We no longer have time for ourselves.
But still poetry beckons us back to the mystery of life, that child-like energy that brings back to the magic, the excitement and the power within ourselves, within others, within the whole world. Simply, it is the energy that makes it exciting to get up in the morning, not because you are going to Disney World, but because you are simply alive. Poetry, in short, is the flower of that kind of life, the love of the world, and reveals the human attempt and effort to express what is not easily expressed because true love leaves us bewildered and baffled and dumbfounded. Love, like poetry, is a playing on the very limits of language itself, and is always threatening, upon every verse, to push us over the edge into the void of time and space; for that is who we truly are, standing ever on the edge with one foot holding on to the delusions of our life, and the other hanging in mid-air, waiting for the wings to finally grow. But we truly don’t need to wait. We can just step off, for that is when the wings will grow, not before and not after. For now is the only time when love can soar.