Since Carey McHugh’s visit, I have been thinking about how she titles her poems. This entire semester, I have had difficulty titling my own poems. I like that Carey included where she got her poem titles in the back of American Gramophone.
Earlier, I posted about phrases I like in other languages, but I think English phrases are equally inspiring. I see English phrases as potential titles or first lines for poems, and have found a nice master list of phrases on Wikipedia. I hope I can use more of these phrases in the future for a title or a jumping off point!
Opposite to Carey, however, I usually write the poem first and then find a title for it. This seems backward, but I think it works for me. If I start with a title and then write, the poem rarely relates to the title by the time I am finished.
Where to you get your titles from? Do you choose a title or write first?