By Maggie Jean Wince, RCAC Staff
Published in the February Edition of Black Hills Lifestyle Magazine
Love.... some go looking for it, some stumble upon it, and some visit a small town during the holidays and find themselves with a dashing stranger ready to abandon their big-city aspirations for a simpler life. Love has inspired poets throughout the ages. If you’re feeling the stirrings of affection and hoping to convey your emotions in a way that transcends the ordinary, consider the beauty and power of crafting a love poem. Here’s a guide to help you navigate the enchanting process of putting pen to paper in the name of love.
As you embark on the journey of crafting your love poem, let the expert wisdom of South Dakota’s poet laureate, Bruce Roseland, guide you. “Write from the heart,” Roseland says. “All good poetry starts from the memory of an emotional moment. From that point all things, including good poetry, flow.
Wondering where that moment will turn up? Roseland finds, “Usually, it is an incident, the ah-ha moment when we receive insight into the nature of our world/lives. In this case, it is the relationships that make our life rich and whole.” Let these words guide your pen as you express your emotions by using the art of poetry.
REFLECT ON YOUR FEELINGS
Before you begin, take a moment to reflect on the emotions that course through you. What is it about this person that stirs your soul? Is it the way their eyes light up, the way they touch your hand while laughing, or how they simply say your name? Jot down these thoughts and let them be the foundation of your poem.
FIND INSPIRATION IN NATURE AND METAPHORS
Nature and metaphors often serve as poetic vehicles for expressing love. Compare your loved one to elements in nature – a gentle breeze, a blooming flower, or the warmth of the sun. Metaphors add layers of meaning and evoke vivid images that resonate with the reader.
PLAY WITH RHYTHM AND RHYME
Experiment with the rhythm of your poem. You can choose a traditional form with a regular meter and rhyme scheme, or opt for free verse for a more contemporary feel. Let the cadence of your words reflect the ebb and flow of your emotions.
CAPTURE MOMENTS AND MEMORIES
Recall special moments or shared memories that resonate with your love story. Whether it’s a quiet evening under the stars or a spontaneous adventure, reflect on that moment that made you say, “This person right here is my person.” These details add a personal touch to your poem and create a sense of intimacy.
BE GENUINE AND AUTHENTIC
The most compelling love poems are those that come from an authentic place. Be true to yourself and your emotions. Avoid clichés and express your feelings in a way that feels sincere and unique to you and your relationship. Try to avoid the phrase, roses are red.
EDIT AND REFINE
After the initial burst of creativity, revisit and refine your poem. Pay attention to the flow and eliminate unnecessary words. Ensure that each line contributes to the overall sentiment. A well- crafted love poem is a labor of love in itself.
If you want to test your material before giving it to your one true love, the Dahl Arts Center is hosting a Spoken Word Open Mic on February 13. This event is free and open to the public!
So, pick up your pen, let the ink flow, and embark on the journey of writing a love poem that will echo through the chambers of time.
Dahl Arts Center
713 7th Street
Rapid City, SD 57701