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there are no rules in modern poetry

  1. Show, don’t tell.


  1. Don’t talk about the moon.

But if you do, allude

to the glint on broken glass.

Don’t say the dish ran away with the spoon

because it rhymes.


  1. Don’t rhyme.


  1. Vary the metre, the beats, the lengths

of your lines.

Let us feel, but in verse that is flat

as elegant prose.


  1. Be strange.

Juxtapose disparate elements.

Impose, if you will, circles into squares.

Use phrases like

The pigs arrested me

with the most original production of Hamlet I have ever seen.


  1. Use concrete images

apprehensible to the senses.

Not abstract. Love,

what is that but a leaf-swirl

in the mind?


  1. No clichés.


  1. There are no rules.


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