Who Wrote Poetry In Motion

Origins of Poetry in Motion

Poetry in Motion is a phrase originally coined in 1956 by lyricist Paul Slade, which became the title of a Neil Sedaka and Howard Greenfield song released in 1961. The expression refers to a poem or verse that moves the reader, invoking emotion and inspiring deep thought. From then on, it has been used to describe any verbal – or written – expression whose words evoke strong feelings or thoughts.
More recently, Poetry in Motion has been used to refer to a variety of creative works, from spoken-word performances and musical compositions, to musical theater and dance, as well as to visual arts depicting poetic scenes. Embedded in music, spoken word and storytelling, this type of poetry has become so widespread that its presence permeates virtually all of popular culture – from advertising and entertainment to politics, education and everyday language.

Features of Poetry in Motion

Poetry in motion features stripped-down language and visuals that effortlessly evoke emotion and create powerful impressions. It is characterized by rhythm, rhyme and repetition, piercing metaphors and stunning imagery, which together make a lasting impact on the reader. At its best, Poetry in Motion paints pictures that remain in our memory long after the poem or performance has ended.
The words and images used in this kind of poetry are usually simple and straightforward – and yet, capable of stimulating imagination and opening possibilities for creative thought. Through this, Poetry in Motion encourages us to see the world differently – to question and appreciate the beauty in our everyday lives.

Role of Poetry in Motion

Poetry in Motion gives us the opportunity to express our feelings and thoughts, helping us make sense of our lives and the world around us. It is a powerful tool to ignite conversations, connecting people through shared experiences and perspectives, and inspiring culture shifts in both small and large communities alike.
By appealing to the emotions, Poetry in Motion can also act as a bridge to understanding social justice issues, enabling us to confront difficult topics that are still often avoided. This type of poetry enables us to create effective and meaningful messages on topics such as race, gender and poverty – messages that transcend the boundaries of language and religion, and spark empathy, understanding and healing.

Presence of Poetry in Motion

Since its inception, Poetry in Motion has become increasingly popular, gaining worldwide recognition and awards from renowned institutions such as the Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics, the American Poetry Society, the African Poetry Association, the UK Poetry Society and many more. Spoken-word poetry, in particular, has become an increasingly popular form of entertainment, spawning major platforms like the YouTube channel, ‘Valerie TV’.
Additionally, the online presence of Poetry in Motion has rapidly expanded, with social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Reddit providing venues for writers and performers to pursue their craft and share it with a broader audience. Notably, #poetryinmotion has become a popular hashtag, aggregating tens of thousands of posts from writers and enthusiasts worldwide.

Benefits of Poetry in Motion

At its core, Poetry in Motion is a language of power, enabling us to articulate complex emotions and ideas in simple and often beautiful ways. This form of expression has enormous potential to bridge the gap between languages, cultures and generations, while inspiring creativity, compassion and connectedness on a global scale.
Poetry in Motion is also an incredibly powerful tool for self-expression and exploration. Through it, we can express ourselves in a manner that is both impactful and cathartic, and deepen our understanding of the world and our place in it.

Workshops and Resources

To support writers and performers, many organizations have started offering workshops, lectures, conferences and publications on Poetry in Motion. Resources such as the Poetry in Motion Workshop, Poetry in Motion: Preparing for the Stage, and The American Book of Poetry are just a few popular examples.
Moreover, the internet has become a fountain of inspiration and tutorials on Poetry in Motion, offering free online tools, podcasts, videos and e-books on the topic. This has allowed more people to discover and explore the benefits of Poetry in Motion, creating an ever-growing community of practitioners and celebrating its presence in popular culture.

Modern Style of Poetry in Motion

Modern Poetry in Motion consists of genre-bending forms of creative expression that blend language, sound and visuals in a uniquely harmonious way – incorporating elements of rap, hip-hop and spoken word into poetic scenes where powerful metaphors unfold and move the listener.
In certain cases, the words become almost secondary to sound and beats, as experimental forms of songs and beats birthed in inner city culture and youth communities gain further traction and recognition. Live performances often feature instruments, such as drums and harmonica, setting the tone and elevating the overall experience.

Collaborative Nature of Poetry in Motion

In addition to its evolution in terms of form, Poetry in Motion has gained momentum thanks to the collaborative nature of its practice. More and more often, writers and performers work together across disciplines, creating performances filled with original sound, with some even using musical instruments like pianos and accordions to accompany their lyrical works.
This has allowed for further experimentation and evolution in the field, creating some truly mesmerizing works of art, in which the main priority is conveying a powerful emotion or message, rather than adhering to a certain composition model.

Challenges of Poetry in Motion

The practice of Poetry in Motion is not without its challenges. As it continues to expand and transform into bold new territories, creative expression must confront the inevitable social and cultural taboos, prejudices and censorship that arise from exploring alternative perspectives.
Moreover, many spoken-word artists must contend with the fact that, despite the growing recognition granted to this form of art, the practice remains, to a large degree, unrecognized and financially unsupported, making it difficult for some to pursue their craft as a profession.

Recognition of Poetry in Motion

Fortunately, recent years have seen increasing recognition and praise grown for Poetry in Motion, both in popular culture and in the academia. In addition to various awards and honors being granted to spoken-word artists, some even being honored as ‘kings’ and ‘queens’ of the industry, there have been increasing efforts to bring Poetry in Motion into the classroom and teach the power of its language.
In 2006, a cohort of respected figures in academia, arts, and entertainment joined forces to create an organization called ‘Teaching Respect through Poetry’, through which they traveled across the US to bring the importance of this form of expression to school districts.

Evolution and Popularity of Poetry in Motion

As Poetry in Motion continues to gain attention, new techniques, tools and platforms are being developed or adapted to express the power of its language. From Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to music streaming platforms like YouTube and SoundCloud, the development of new technologies is vital to spread its message wider.
In 2019, Poetry in Motion saw further recognition, with Masterpiece Classic launching a global competition with the goal of discovering, cultivating and celebrating the best in new spoken-word talent. Word is also spreading of more organisations, initiatives and awards emerging, thus cementing the importance of this form of expression across generations.

Dannah Hannah is an established poet and author who loves to write about the beauty and power of poetry. She has published several collections of her own works, as well as articles and reviews on poets she admires. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English, with a specialization in poetics, from the University of Toronto. Hannah was also a panelist for the 2017 Futurepoem book Poetry + Social Justice, which aimed to bring attention to activism through poetry. She lives in Toronto, Canada, where she continues to write and explore the depths of poetry and its influence on our lives.

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