Things I am going to STEAL

I forget what day we talked about this in class, but there was a quote that said, “Good poets borrow. Great poets steal.” I wish I had copies from the poems we have already workshopped, but there are definitely lines that I am in love with from the writers in class, but alas, I can’t remember them. Here’s a working list of things that I want to steal:

  • Grimay’s idea of relating things to flies
  • Grimay’s relation between telescopes and guns (I already compared cameras and guns, so I need something more)
  • Troy Seefried’s line “fog-filled morning” that I misread as “fog-filled warning” which I loved
  • The way that Tora’s music makes me feel
  • The entire song “Lover I Don’t Have to Love” by Bright Eyes
  • Ilya Kaminsky’s line “I must write the same poem over and over again, for any empty page is the white flag of their surrender”
  • From 6LACK’s “Luving U”, the lines [I stand up, say ‘I had enough’/ She stand up ‘Oh, you think you tough’] (Oh, the joys of toxic relationships!)
  • Elieen Myles’ line “She never resembled/ the woman/ but she became/ her… like looking/ death in/ the face/ and saying/ okay/ get going” from the book Not Me
  • From The Triggering Town, “There is always a body of water, a sea just out of sight beyond the hill or a river running through town. Outside of the town a few miles is a lake that has been the scene of both romance and violence.” 
  • From Yeek’s song “Cleaner Air”, the lines “I was born and raised/ I don’t know where/ She’s from Florida/ Probably breathing cleaner air”

2 Replies to “Things I am going to STEAL”

  1. Going back to our discussion about great poets stealing lines, I feel like there’s an imbalance in the way we think about intellectual theft- taking and improving on other people’s craft is absolutely essential to improving the medium. And you see that a lot: Shakespeare (allegedly) compiled many works from other playwrites. Walt Disney remade fairy tales that had entered into the public domain. Kanye West samples clips from other artists. But it’s hard for us to do that- companies have an incentive to extend copyright law and use it to punish smaller creators, and they have the capital to drown them in legal fees, while everyday creators don’t have the insane funds to fight back. Point being- it’s fun and easy to steal the intellectual property of rich companies to improve our craft

  2. I love the idea of “stealing” but not plagiarizing from other people’s work. It’s more considered to be a source of inspiration rather than a place your brain lacks in creativity. Tarantino does the same things with other films he really likes (as I’ve said a million times in class lol). Admitting the stealing of something almost makes it seem okay (which in this case it is). I also NEED to read a poem of yours comparing telescopes to guns (or any thing to guns for that matter). I once compared bullets to flower petals so you can use that too :).

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