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Does Society Need Poetry?

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What is poetry to me? Hmm...(I'm scratching my non-existent beard). I would tell you but there are loads of former and current students of Roehampton University who are waiting to tell you what they think poetry is to them and what it does for them.

Hasmat Mustun
'Poetry is art on paper. It's playing with words and sentence structure in an imaginative way to bring out emotions. Its a writer's emotions all scattered on the page.

Poetry is important in society because if it died out then there would be no more true romance. If you think back to the old age where writing a poem to a girl was really romantic. But not everybody can do it.

Society needs poetry. It needs a different form of creativity and imagination. It needs a different form of letting your emotions out.'

Musa Bukenya (Former Student/writer director)
'Poetry is like a language,a form of expression'

Petra Rodrigues(Former Student)
'poetry is important because it enables a person to express their inner heart in an attempt to connect to other people'

Kerri Swan
'I think that when reading romantic poetry it automatically makes you think or you relate it to some one that you dated'

Halio-rap artist (Rap artist/Student)
'For me poetry is the best form of expressing myself, no matter how I'm feeling. I used it and it helped me get through all the bad and depressing times, and it was a pain relief, in a kinda weird way. I also found it handy when I was feeling really aggressive, so rather than go out and attack somebody, I'd be sat in the studio writing some bars (lyrics), that would actually shock a lot of readers, or even listeners. people always complain that I don't write many happy songs, but the new album (Freedom, Out Sometime in January) is filled with them,'

Sophie Chapman (Former student)

'Hmmm...well that is a tough question, but whenever I hear someone reading it, or read it myself it sounds so relaxing and has a really deep meaning,...if you can describe it as that. That especially, if you're in love with someone, you can relate to. Does that make any sense?'

Dane John Cobain (PR/media/Musician/ Former student)
'well, to quote Allen Ginsberg, "Poetry is words that are empowered to make your hair stand on end," and I'd say it's powerful because language is a key part of our society and what makes us human. Poetry goes past the everyday version of language (hello, how are you, etc) and into the unknown and experimental, or at least the kind of poetry that I read does,'

I guess if emotions and intent are paint, and a pen, a paint brush; then I take it poetry would be the perfect portrait, or that interesting landscape painting.

Here is a poem of mine, enjoy.

Sonnet Of A Sober Drunk

I am a bedraggled mess, because of you I lose sleep! Oh because of you! I wonder how?! Did you not plan your sweet tasting coup and overthrew my reason; my emotions to be subject to you now?

I found no favour in bars, or pubs and searched chateaus for the perfect wine, but good drink makes you covet it, and cheap wine tastes of infatuation and sweet-bitter after tastes; so after the best I did pine.

My shabby clothes are mistaken for persona, appreciating not book but simple cover; I'm a man who dresses past Solomon in heart to pursue as a suitor a most faithful lover.

My smell keeps people away from me but keeps you ever so near; they told me to wash and forget about you but they don't know who favour might kiss, not one of them be a seer.

Then I came across a chateau, a long since forgotten one, but with all the fruits of a farmers effort gone to waste; in the faithful cellar was all but one bottle - I had to have a taste.

I had but a sip - I had found a good thing. If this place were mine to have all finance of mine in this would be sunk, the place would be restored as a virgin and of these sweet grapes I'd get most passionately drunk.

Your affections would be beautifully bottled for my pleasure and I would uncork with loving care; the finest of tastes, the rarest of years, your type is extremely hard to come by: with any I would refuse to share.

Kingsley Olaleye Reuben or K.O.Reuben is the author of Athens: Till death do us part (available on amazon) and founder and co-editor of The Roehampton Lane Journal. Contact Kingsley on koreuben@hotmail.co.uk

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