Sarah Barr

Writer, poet and teacher

What else Does a Poem Need?

My friend, poet Gill Horitz and I have been selecting for the next edition of South poetry magazine. We did this over late December and early January and passed many happy hours browsing through and carefully reading hundreds of poems.

In my previous blog I mentioned some of the things we looked for in a poem. Adding to those thoughts:

The substance of a poem needs to be chipped away at, crafted and shaped. Try not to over-layer your poem with too many ideas and metaphors. Keep editing, longer than you may feel is necessary. Trust your reader to fill in the gaps.

Writers who have been to my workshops and courses know that I think titles are incredibly important. A title can add so much and even lift a poem to another level.

Now I am thinking about The Next Big Thing as I have been ‘tagged’ by historical novelist Maria McCann and I have questions to answer. More in my next post!

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