Poetry – A Poem by Marianne Moore

Poetry - A Poem by Marianne Moore
This entry is part [part not set] of 15 in the series Poetry and Management

Poetry is a poem by Marianne Moore, which reveals the profound sense of poetry as a place for the genuine. Can poetic reflection push us to be more authentic? In great part, this is the reason why Poetry still inspires me so much.

This is the fourth contribution to my Poetry & Management collection. Poetry has always been one of my favourite forms of expressions, probably one of the eclectic sides of my multipotentialite trait. And I will be sharing more of these over time.


I too, dislike it: there are things that are important beyond
      all this fiddle.
   Reading it, however, with a perfect contempt for it, one
      discovers that there is in
   it after all, a place for the genuine.
      Hands that can grasp, eyes
      that can dilate, hair that can rise
         if it must, these things are important not because a

high-sounding interpretation can be put upon them but because
      they are
   useful; when they become so derivative as to become
      unintelligible, the
   same thing may be said for all of us—that we
      do not admire what
      we cannot understand. The bat,
         holding on upside down or in quest of something to

eat, elephants pushing, a wild horse taking a roll, a tireless
      wolf under
   a tree, the immovable critic twinkling his skin like a horse
      that feels a flea, the base-
   ball fan, the statistician—case after case
      could be cited did
      one wish it; nor is it valid
         to discriminate against “business documents and

school-books”; all these phenomena are important. One must
      make a distinction
   however: when dragged into prominence by half poets,
      the result is not poetry,
   nor till the autocrats among us can be
     “literalists of
      the imagination”—above
         insolence and triviality and can present

for inspection, imaginary gardens with real toads in them,
      shall we have
   it. In the meantime, if you demand on the one hand, in defiance of their opinion—
   the raw material of poetry in
      all its rawness, and
      that which is on the other hand,
         genuine, then you are interested in poetry.

Marianne Moore

Source:  Others for 1919: An Anthology of the New Verse, edited by Alfred Kreymborg.

A Short Comment

Writing of Poetry in a Poem seems an exercise of self-reflection and sense-making. Poetry becomes a place for the genuine: in a world where fake news seems to reign, the idea that poetry can constitute a realm of necessary authenticity is refreshing. We do not admire what we cannot understand seems a call for simplicity and intelligibility, a prime goal for a poet, as well as for any communicator. There is not a hierarchy between forms of communication, including business documents. Each has its value, and not everything can be brought to poetry. There seems to be also a call to match the existing reality, and not suppress it from the distance of a poetic ivory tower.

Yet, the role of the poet in all its rawness is that which is genuine. A strong message on the importance of representing the reality through true emotions, as solely poetry can do. Why is this message important in a business context? Because we always have to balance our selves in the quest for displaying our authentic ego. Too often we run away from this, hiding and forgetting to portray a strong leadership vision instead.

What do you think of this poem? Add your comment below.

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