Prime Your Writing Session With Poetry

I’ve been thinking about the power of poetry after having recently having reread Ray Bradbury’s Zen and the Art of Writing.


Bradbury believed that to prime the subconscious, poetry is the perfect vehicle to access more subtle uses of language. He says “Read poetry every day of your life. Poetry is good because it flexes muscles you don’t use often enough. Poetry expands the senses and keeps them in prime condition. It keeps you aware of your nose, your eye, your tongue, your hand. And above all, poetry is compacted metaphor or simile. Such metaphors, like Japanese paper flowers, may expand outward into gigantic shapes. Ideas lie everywhere through the poetry books…” Bradbury apparently started his morning off by reading a poem.

Following Bradbury's advice, I’ve begun to do the same thing just before starting my writing day. I’m also spending a few minutes a day with John Fox’s Finding What You Didn’t Lose – Expressing Your Truth and Creativity through Poem Making.

As a thriller writer, I'm no poet - and never will be - but starting off my writing day with inspired imagery and language opens my mind to the possibilities. Perhaps a little of the magic will eventually trickle down into my pages.