Poetry is Needed

The poet as a tortured soul is no coincidence made up by fools.

Poetry digs sharp nails into hearts.

Poetry shows tears assaulting the floor.

Poetry isn’t written for an audience.

What do I mean?

For those who don’t write, the reader is the sun.

The universe revolves around their world,

and entertainment must conform to their will.

If art does not conform, it shall hold a brand.

To be labeled an outcast for all to behold.

But if a writer creates a piece of art for the reader alone,

the magic dies on the page along with the soul.

And the reader once again turns their nose up in defiance.

Poetry isn’t written for an audience.

Why does poetry exist?

Poetry would be a thought to the wind if we were satisfied with prose alone.

Famous names would never exist.

Connections would rarely be made with words.

The spark of creation is lost.

Poetry is needed.

Listen carefully. I did not say poetry is wanted.

Poetry is needed.

The poet with the tortured soul sees the length of fiction and cringes.

Torture would become of spilling one’s pain on page after page after page.

Fiction is beautiful, but poetry is raw.

Poetry can hide behind beauty with flowers all along the rim.

But the rawness of words deep underneath

Draws us in again and again.

The poet can take their pain and dip the truth onto a page.

The poison of suffering stains the stanzas as elegance takes on its darkest form.

Poetry is their form of release.

Without a release, pain would bubble and burst

only to leave hand prints of blood traced behind.

But poetry walks hand and hand with the poet

And offers relief for the tortured soul.

How do I know these things?

Am I scholar or a god?

No I am a poet,

and, I assure you, I am as tortured as the rest.

We hand readers pages, but we never see ink.

Our souls and our blood stain every page.

Our poems pull the tear along our ribs

to release the screams trapped below our masks.

Poets are the best actors.

Now, I admit, some moments we write for the crowd.

Sell our pieces and make compilations.

Every dollar earned is another meal for the table.

But, it’s those hidden poems that hold the truth.

That scrap of paper torn in half

balanced carefully between novels and notebooks.

The hidden work holds our truth,

and the hidden work pronounces greater reality.

Poetry is needed.

One can embrace the uncomfortable.

One can cry along with the pain of another.

One can feel the words

and breathe in the change offered by a few simple lines.

Poetry is needed.

Poetry isn’t written for an audience.

Poetry is written by me.

Poetry is written by you.

And every piece changes a life,

whether the writer’s life alone,

or thousands of lives owned by the readers who stumble upon a timeless piece.

Poetry is needed.

This poem is about: 
My community
My country
Our world
Guide that inspired this poem: