Plain-speech Resonance Poetry -- What it is - and isn't

As I explain briefly in the course syllabus,
plain-speech resonance poetry is characterized by the quiet techniques that yield the poetry of common speech.  Frost referred to what he was attempting as “the sound of sense.”  Through it, the literal tones and tunes, the over-sounds of ordinary human talk, “the abstract vitality of our speech,”  become transformed, alchemically, into poetry.

The formula of simplicity in plain-speech poetic communication, finding poetic expression within a common style driven by passions to discover and communicate, is often elusive.  Staying within its form requires that the poet focus on the need to communicate as conversation, not as performance, not as formality.  The persona that the poet assumes is just another one of the folks being addressed, and the poet always remains within the circle of audience as the poetry unfolds. The poet discards the cloak of poetic formality, forsakes the forms of fragment-poetry that make up a lot of the current culture’s poetic landscape.

At the same time, plain-speech resonance poetry transcends common speech.  Within its rhythms, and usually as it threads through a story-narrative, a successful poem manages to present the poet's unique take on things, the metaphors and figures that elevate it, the sublimity that causes poetry to soar.

In 2007, in a keynote presentation at an international conference on consciousness and the arts, in the U.K., I defined the term.   Here you can read my academic paper that covers the topic.  It was later published in the U.K. as a chapter in Consciousness, Theatre, Literature and the Arts: 2007 (Cambridge Scholars Press (England) 2008 (Daniel Meyer-Dinkgräfe, Ed.))

Compare Emily Dickinson's formal poetry with the "plain-speech rsonance" of the poetry in modern mode "hidden" within her correspondence.

Compare Dylan Thomas oratorically-styled poetry, with his rare lapses into the "plain-speech resonance" mode.

The Irony Zone. This is an article I wrote a long time ago.  It doesn't pertain directly to poetry, but it discusses the common ground we all share as humans, even though humans usually get into trouble by not recognizing it's there.  This article expands the scope of "irony" beyond its usual bounds.  You'll probably find that reading it will facilitate even better comfort for you when you write plain-speech poetry.  For me, it's just about the core of my own human interaction value system.