Saturday, April 4, 2009

How to Be a Romantic Poet, Part Five

Tip #5: Cultivate a Deep Love of Nature.

Part of being a Romantic Poet is being constantly moved to the point of epic poetry studied by generations of surly English students to come at the sight of a daffodil. Nature can be the language through which God speaks to you, God itself, the reflection of your own perfections, or merely a great place to escape from your numerous critics and creditors.

Compare your loves to flowers, or at least have the decency to compare them to rocks and mountains. Constantly reflect on the glories of nature, and travel everywhere you can to experience them. Italy is very popular, as it is also a great place to die of a wasting disease. Invoke Nature as your muse and your teacher and be sure to reject classical authors as the promoters of worthless knowledge while still making allusions to the most obscure of Greek tragedies whenever you can. This plays into another aspect of being a Romantic Poet. If you cannot love yourself beyond reason, call yourself the Poet of the Age and see yourself as inherently better than all your contemporaries, it is a good idea to have (or to fake) low self-esteem and constantly despise your verses, your education and your inadequacies. This will endear you to all the ladies of your acquantaince, as long as you really do have the poetic skills and popularity to prove this poor opinion of yourself false. Otherwise you will feel really terrible about yourself, move in with your publisher and accidentally die of heart failure from your opium addiction.

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