When we write, we have not only the language to wield but also poetic techniques, used to enrich our ideas. There’s metaphor, repetition, rhyme (and lack of), tone, personification, dissonance, all sorts, and each one is incredibly useful when it comes to flourishing thoughts.
Bob Mason, Reddit user /u/bobbness, kindly let us share his piece Rest Stop. Written to a satisfying meter, this poem brilliantly demonstrates how to paint a picture using the poetry toolkit.
Firstly, I have to say, the use of alliteration in the second line is one of the best I’ve heard in a long time; those harsh hard C’s exert real stress and produce a great picture of the locked traffic. The line beneath, with its frequent punctuation, furthers the theme of lack of movement, as if there’s no fluidity to the line and we can’t finish it without stopping, inching us like traffic.
The second stanza breaks the mould and as the narrator finds relief, so do we as we’re given the bounce and rhyme amongst the hectic night, ending on a lighter note of more calm and quietness.
There’s real music to this piece, it’s fun to read out loud, and it’s a great use of language. A real gem that clearly had a lot of thought and talent put into it. Well done Bob!
This turnpike ramp burns brake-light red
with cramped cars crammed in line.
They grumble, tap, and puff white plumes
which fill the wind-chilled night.
Aside sits mine, its blinkers lit
to gild the hill in waves,
where I, behind a lonely pole,
find peace and do the same.