Friday, October 09, 2009

Poetry Friday - The Unwritten History of Prose

Much has been made of the difference between poetry and prose. It was Samuel Taylor Coleridge who said "I wish our clever young poets would remember my homely definitions of prose and poetry; that is, prose,—words in their best order; poetry,—the best words in their best order." This wonderful piece muses a bit on the nature of prose.
The Unwritten History of Prose
by T.R. Hummer

… a litel thyng …

The prose of merchants, the prose of ministers,
Pornographers' prose, the prose of Julius Caesar—
Every militant word. Executioners' prose, inspectors' prose,
The dreamy calculation of love letters,
Attorneys' prose, morticians' prose,
The coded prose of spies. One ice storm,
Years back, scribbled its thesis on Ohio.

Read or listen to the poem in its entirety.
The round up is being hosted by Anastasia Suen at Picture Book of the Day. Do stop by and take in all the great poetry being shared. Before you go, be sure to check out this week's poetry stretch results. Happy poetry Friday all!


  1. LOVE the poem...the ice storm's thesis and the child's name. The reference to Chaucer is making me wish to be an undergraduate again, with a whole class dedicated to Chaucer and a professor who spoke fluent Middle English and time to spend in a silent library reading Chaucer.

  2. Ooooo...

    One ice storm,
    Years back, scribbled its thesis on Ohio.

    Wonderful! And the kid looking out the window, his father behind the child's name...what great images.

  3. The lines about the ice storm are my favorite too!