my friend Nietzsche was talking shit about poetry today he says things like this
“Poets are shameless with their experiences: they exploit them.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche
this is from an article titled: Why Do Poets Lie Too Much? Nietzsche, Poetry and the Different Voices of Zarathustra
They lie and their lies don’t have depth, they are superficial, shallow seas; neither their thoughts nor their feelings penetrate the depths. They are guided by boredom and lust, present shallowness as depth, pose as reconcilers, but they are, in fact, mixers, bring the unmixable together and create eclectic forms. They are poor in style and mix eclectically where the form and the content remain apart, where a variety of disparate elements is not creatively appropriated, which is the mixing of modern style, or lack of style.
Verily, their spirit itself is the peacock of peacocks, and a sea of vanity!
I thought this very interesting because well Zarathustra is a poet and as I think Nietzsche is too. But really Nietzsche is getting all pompous saying certain poets are shallow and trite while HE, isn’t. He is a poet of blood, experience and life.
Here is an interesting article Nietzsche, Philosophy, & Poetry who makes this argument ” Therefore, we cannot draw a distinction between the philosopher as a seeker after objective truths and a poet as a seeker after wholly ‘subjective’ and relativistic experiences.”
But I think that there are some distinctions that can be made between poetry and philosophy. I don’t think that there is much reason or rhyme (this is an joke to myself) in making the distinction. Perhaps poetry is an expression of what is known while philosophy is an expression of knowing and the unknown. Here is a debate on the topic.
But more so when I read poetry I look for similarities. I see pieces of myself in the work. I feel the depths of the emotion and the impact of the experience. Oscar Wilde spoke that the artist has a great responsibility to expand experiences to make them more vibrant that the actual event. In that the act of reading about it is a greater emotional sensation that actually being in it. To me, that is what poetry strives for. Philosophy on the other hand, I read differently, I read for similarity and consistency with my own mode of thought but I also read it to breach my own experience to bring me to a place of uncertainty.
Nietzsche is a bit inconsistent from what I am gathering and he also loved poetry. His “favorite poet” was Friedrich Hölderlin he was diagnosed with extreme hypochondria and later declared “mentally unfit.” Who wants a “mentally fit” poet?
Another day. I follow another path,
Enter the leafing woodland, visit the spring
Or the rocks where the roses bloom
Or search from a look-out, but nowhere
Love are you to be seen in the light of day
And down the wind go the words of our once so
Your beloved face has gone beyond my sight,
The music of your life is dying away
Beyond my hearing and all the songs
That worked a miracle of peace once on
My heart, where are they now? It was long ago,
So long and the youth I was has aged nor is
Even the earth that smiled at me then
The same. Farewell. Live with that word always.
For the soul goes from me to return to you
Day after day and my eyes shed tears that they
Cannot look over to where you are
And see you clearly ever again.