Thursday, March 31, 2011

Poetry--Find The Passion

The house pictured here belonged to Claude Monet. Located in Giverny, France, it is now one of many of France's tourist destinations. When we visited the house and gardens last summer, I wanted to stay forever. I felt so at peace there, so filled with happiness and awe at the splendid home and gardens where the famous painter created many of his renowned works of art.

Strolling through the gardens, I grew more and more amazed at what this man had created and then painted. The famous lily pond with it's small wooden bridges are exactly as seen in the paintings. Our tour guide had related much of the story of Monet's life as we traveled by bus from Paris to see where Monet lived with his wife, his mistress and children. The guide explained his love of gardens and the effort he made in creating a special place at Giverny. The view from every window of the pink house is like candy for the eyes.

Are you getting the idea that I feel very strongly about this spot? I definitely do, so much so that I hope to return one day without the time specifications of a tour group. Even though we had plenty of time to walk through the home and gardens and visit the ever-present gift shop, I would like to do it when I could spend even more time and with fewer people around. It may never happen, but I'd be thrilled if I can make one more visit there.

Yes, I was passionate about this place, which is the reason that I was able to write a poem titled "A Garden Walk" when we returned home. Yesterday, I talked about pathetic poetry citing a poem I wrote to a stated theme but about which I had no passion. No passion--no success!

I truly believe that poetry must come from the heart. The writer needs to 'feel' something about the subject, really feel it, not try to manufacture that feeling. If you want to write a poem that sings, one that speaks to the reader as well as yourself, find the passion first. The rest will come easily. When I finished "A Garden Walk" I felt satisfied, and lo and behold, even my critique group was very positive about it.

A part of the Garden

A small part of the lily pond


  1. I think it would be easy to feel passionate about such a beautiful, serene, home. I've tried a couple of writing prompt memes, sometimes I can come up with a good story, and sometimes they fall flat. If I have a strong feeling for the topic, it works, if I don't, it doesn't. I don't think it is necessary to like the topic, sometimes dislike makes an even better story, as long as you convey those feelings and engage the reader.

  2. Well said, BJ. You end up with much better writing when you have some strong feelings about the subject.