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Guilty Knowledge, Guilty PleasureThe Dirty Art of Poetry$
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William Logan

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780231166867

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231166867.001.0001

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A List of Don’ts

A List of Don’ts

(p.318) A List of Don’ts
Guilty Knowledge, Guilty Pleasure

William Logan

Columbia University Press

This chapter presents a list of don'ts for writing poetry. Among them are: don't try to make the poem look pretty; don't think you are the only bastard who ever suffered—just write as if you were; don't think if you cheat on form or slip the meter, no one will notice; don't double-space your lines and think the poem better; don't think what you have to say is important, the way you say it is what's important; don't think your poems are good because they sound good read aloud; never write poems about poetry; don't think you've been anointed by early success; don't think you can ignore grammar; and never write the first line if you already know the last, the best poem is the unwritten poem.

Keywords:   poems, poetry, writing

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