Photo by Ezra Comeau
For writers to write excellent nature poetry, they must first be willing to immerse in nature truly. Mr. Goldman’s book of mountain poetry is a perfect example. Alan Goldman expresses his love for mountaineering in poetic stanzas and lovely rhymes.
Regarding poetry, romance and nature are some of the prevalent muses. After all, if poets were to write picturesque and dreamy verses with flows and rhymes that put one’s head in the clouds, they would prefer writing about subjects that incite love, passion, and joy. Nature and romance offer all.
However, nature is the more accessible source of poetic inspiration among the two. Not everyone may experience a love so passionate that it makes them write intimate prose to describe the other and relish the moments they spend together. But everyone can experience and feel the beauty that nature offers. Everyone can be an audience to its majesty and write descriptively the emotions it makes them feel.
Especially now, when people slowly recognize the signs of nature deteriorating, poetry becomes the link for them to enjoy the beauty it once had and what it should’ve been. Every poet’s biggest aspiration is to capture nature’s essence and grace vividly, but achieving such can be frustrating. It’s challenging but not impossible. Here are tips that can help anyone become aces at nature poetry.
A massive part of creating excellent nature poetry is the poet’s immersion and engagement with nature. To write about nature, they must first experience what it offers. For instance, in Reflections on Mountaineering, Mr. Goldman’s book of mountain poetry, Alan Goldman presents a narrative style on his climbing journey. The book summarizes the author’s thirty or more years of being engrossed in his mountain climbing experiences. Alan initially had to be one with nature before he could write and publish the book, thus showcasing the importance of immersion in the nature poetry journey.
Nature poets must be prepared to work outdoors with this need for immersion. Nature is beautiful, but it can be unpredictable. Rain, storms, or sunshine are only a few of what it can give its visitors. Hence, they must be prepared to experience anything. Beyond bringing their pen and paper, poets must also dress and prepare extra clothing and necessities for any weather.
Being prepared also means preparing for the mental exhaustion and challenges writers can go through. Above preparing for the worst in weather cases, writers must also prepare to face the worst in writing affairs. While poetry can be a highly liberating art, it can also be susceptible to commonplace expressions, especially regarding nature.
Rain is equivalent to sadness. Sunlight can evoke happiness, with its rays an expression of warmth. These are some of the countless clichés poets can fall victim to. Writers must choose to avoid choosing the obvious path. Instead, they must immerse themselves in nature and welcome the experience with innocence or pureness, a sense of novelty, as though they’re only experiencing nature for the first time.
What does the river sound like? What does the air in the forest feel like? The best way for writers to be unique and distinctive in illustrating nature is by using all of their senses throughout the experience. For a piece to be unique and significant, writers must show their readers an experience they’ve never been in.
Nature poetry primarily focuses on nature. But this doesn’t mean writers can’t touch on people’s effects on it. To truly encompass what nature is, one should recognize the external factors that influence the changes it undergoes, including the other people that visit nature. As the population grows, lesser and lesser lands have yet to be visited. This doesn’t make nature any less holy, and writers should be bold in exploring this relationship between humans and nature.
Highlight the Message
Every literary piece is written to inform, warn, or spread advocacy. Writers can write to express their creativity; there’s nothing wrong with that. But poems are better if they’re written with a message in mind. However, this doesn’t mean poets can be preachy or condescending with their delivery. They must avoid moralizing their readers and commit to advocating humbly and artistically.