Poetry vs. Short Stories

Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary says:

Poetry: Writing that formulates a concentrated imaginative awareness of experience in language chosen and arranged to create a specific emting on the creation of mood rather than plot.

Short Stories: An invented prose narrative shorter than a novel usually dealing with a few characters and aiming at unity of effect and often concentrating on the creation of mood rather than plotI think there is a serious argument here. I think that both Poetry and short stories are meantto move the reader in a way the contemporary novel normally doesn’t. Poetry doesn’t have a common ending point, in retrospect, one poem can go on forever and never have an end.

What makes Poetry, Poetic?
Poetry has a rhythm about it, even without rhyming, that when read aloud can affect both the audience and the writer. Poetry does not have a set of guidelines or unsaid rules to follow. Poetic traits include interpretation and breaking/following regular grammar rules. Poetry is the observation and craft of conducting words within a sentence, or not a sentence.

Here is a poem by Lang Leav to read. It is one of my favorites. I hope you all like it as much as I do.
Here is a poem by Lang Leav to read. It is one of my favorites. I hope you all like it as much as I do.

Poetry does not need a character, plot or even concentration. It can be all over the place or completely centralized on one topic. I think, however, the most important factor between Poetry and Short Stories is the personal boundaries within them. The thing about poetry is, there are no boundaries. Everything that’s written and everything that’s read is completely open to interpretation. Anything can be poetic, the way I see it is if something is written beautifully or in a way that  no one else could write it- it’s poetry.

If a Short Story is Prose, then why is it not Poetry?

There are many short stories that contain poetry, however the work as a whole may still be considered a short story. Many people who write poetry also write short stories.  They are required to be written from a specific point of view or have an established narrator.    Plot and characters are also very important to the mood and interpretation of the storyline.
In writing a short story there is often more space for detail and less room for interpretation of the plot. Telling a story within a poem usually forces the reader to figure out the presented scene, while short stories often give out information about the story.


Personal Comments:
When I was younger I wrote a lot of short stories before I built up to actual novels. (No, they haven’t been published Boo!) However,poetry seems to be something my hands and my brain have clung to over the years. I’d have to say that out of the two, they are both easily enjoyable but Poetry will always be my first love. To see some of the stuff I’m writing don’t hesitate to visit the link on the home page and visit my personal blog!


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