Well, I finished the first stage of my project back in June. I studied 20 poets and wrote a total of 59 poems. For the past week, I have been editing the poems that I saw potential in. There are 28 of those, of varying styles and for various purposes. Some of them I intend to look for publication on online journals and whatnot, some of them I will stick to publishing myself on my own blog, and some of them are just very personal poems that I don’t want to share with the world just yet. I think my artistic poems were centered more at the beginning and in the middle. Close to the end, my poetry started becoming much more prose-like, but still very honest. Most of my best poetry is free verse, but I do have a pantoum and an ode that I really liked, as well as some rhyming poetry that turned out well. I also think I could turn one of the poems into a spoken word performance, which I was not expecting at all.
I couldn’t come out of this project without having a favorite poet, and that would be either Pablo Neruda or Emily Bronte, with Maya Angelou definitely up there. It was fun, learning about the lives of people so vastly different from each other but who all shared a passion for words. One of the things I wanted to do with this project was emulate strange habits of the poets I was reading. However, most of the habits that I was able to find were ones I could not emulate, so that expectation was not realized. However, the poets definitely did inspire poetry that would not have existed if I hadn’t followed one of their themes or even smaller ideas.
I still wouldn’t consider myself a poet (I even wrote a poem about that), but I do consider myself a writer with poetry as one of the media I use. I did improve as a poet, but I still think I could become much better if I put the time and effort into disciplined poetry writing in the future. I think more than anything, this project put me into the habit of tapping into my feelings and putting them down on paper to see instead of just letting them sit in my head. I had more to say than I realized I did, and putting those messages into words will enable me to share them with other people.