Basil Bunting’s advice to student poets.


1- Compose aloud; poetry is a sound.
2- Vary rhythm enough to stir the emotion you want but not so as to lose impetus.
3- Use spoken words and syntax.
4- Fear adjectives; they bleed nouns. Hate the passive. 5- Jettison ornament gaily but keep shape

Put your poem away till you forget it, then:
6- Cut out every word you dare.
7- Do it again a week later, and again.

Never explain - your reader is as smart as you.

Neil Bruder @neilbruder