I’ve Never Allowed Myself to Only Be a Poet Because I’ve Always Felt That Wasn’t Enough

Photo shot from above of a pile of cigarette butts in a can filled with snow that is sitting on the ground in dirty snow.

I wonder if there’s a difference between a poet and a writer.
They speak of the poet’s heart, but what do they mean?
There are times when prose feels so stilted to me,
When I crave the fluidity of line breaks,
The freedom to not be understood fully,
The convention to break convention,
The magic of diving underwater
To retrieve a poem from within the weeds,
Rather than sitting at a desk,
Keyboard at the ready.

I’ve never allowed myself to only be a poet
Because I’ve always felt that wasn’t enough,
But I am starting to wonder if I’ve been wrong.

Published by Sage Pantony

Sage Pantony is a writer, poet, and zinester. They write about gender, sexuality, mental health, trauma, creativity, and the best ways to cook eggs. They are the author of several zines, including a trilogy about transitioning as a non-binary person. Sage’s work has appeared in publications such as Coven Poetry, Idle Ink, and The Varsity. They currently reside in Tiohtià:ke/Montréal with their pet dinosaur, Peter.

2 thoughts on “I’ve Never Allowed Myself to Only Be a Poet Because I’ve Always Felt That Wasn’t Enough

  1. This is why I consider myself a linguistic descriptivist, and not a linguistic prescriptivist. Prose may have to follow an in-house form; or can be free form, with line breaks and free flow. Shakespeare’s prose has a poetic feel to it, especially when read in its Middle- or Pre-Modern English dialect.
    And to borrow from the trans playbook again … just like with gender, it’s not a binary, it’s a spectrum. Writing doesn’t have to just be prose, or just be poetry. It can be anywhere on that graph.

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    1. Yes, that’s true! I always find there’s at least a little bleed between the two when I write. You can have poetic prose and ‘prosetic’ poetry. I also find I have phases where I strongly prefer one to the other. There’s certainly a fluidity to it, just like with gender.

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