Poetry is written once and then can never be edited. Once you make a poem, that is the final version of the poem forevermore.
This is why poems seem so confusing or disjointed. Take, for example;
- Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
- And sorry I could not travel both
- And be one traveler, long I stood
- And looked down one as far as I could
- To where it bent in the undergrowth; 5
- Then took the other, as just as fair,
- And having perhaps the better claim,
- Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
- Though as for that the passing there
- Had worn them really about the same, 10
- And both that morning equally lay
- In leaves no step had trodden black.
- Oh, I kept the first for another day!
- Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
- I doubted if I should ever come back. 15
- I shall be telling this with a sigh
- Somewhere ages and ages hence:
- Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
- I took the one less traveled by,
- And that has made all the difference. 20
To this day, no one, not even literary scholars, know what the fuck this poem (or any poem) means. Because it was both the first and final draft, Robert Frost wrote this poem on a bar napkin (how most poems were written), and then left in a hotel nightstand for years until found by the secret service of the President to add to the National Archives.
The way you play poetry is to listen intently, snap your fingers in agreement, nod as though you understand, and then have pretentious conversations where nobody makes any sense. Not all poems have to rhyme, and those that do have radically different rhyme schemes, because what the fuck ever, there are no rules to this made-up bullshit.
All poetry was outlawed during the Reagan era due to being suspiciously 'girly' in nature. Though all laws criminalizing women and gays were repealed during the Clinton era (because, as he wrote, "Fat, skinny, male, female, gay, straight, amputee, occasional goat, I likes 'em all!), for some reason they forgot to re-legalize poetry. It's just one of those weird quirks of the law; just a silly holdover from a different bygone time. Punishable by death.
Strangely, editing poetry is still completely legal. It doesn't matter, partially because there are no legal poems to edit. And also probably because, as mentioned above, it is not physically possible according to the laws of the universe to edit poetry. There are several theorized reasons for this:
- Attempting to edit a poem results in a quantum loop of theoretical anti-time, which would finally result in a spatial anomaly that would eradicate all human life from existence.
- The act of editing a poem makes it no longer a poem, but something else; something strange and obscene, otherworldly and horrible. Like prose.
- Every time you edit a poem, you're actually just writing a new poem.
- A cosmic process physically bars the process of poetry-editing, like many of the Overseers that prevent paradoxes from unraveling all of spacetime, perhaps this is a way for the Omniverse to keep especially stupid ideas from destroying all of reality. This theory is also known as 'Writer's Block.'
- Poems are not ever edited because poets are all lousy drunks who are perpetually horrified by their own work, and crumple it up without every looking at it again. This theory is supported by statistical evidence that 98% of poems are never finished. Such as:
- "We are like roses that have never bothered to"
Seriously, what the fuck is that?
Though it is hotly debated, there are many excellent reasons to keep poetry illegal.
- dudes reading their love poems to ladies are insufferable as fuck
- Shakespeare's sonnets are overrated
- bongos are irritating
- if you have to have some haughty name like George Gordon Lord Byron to be taken seriously as a poet, then your craft is stupid
- poems are actually surprisingly powerful, dangerous, and even deadly
- parables do a much better job at conveying information quickly
- poetry resulted in both beatniks and gangsta rap, which continue to destroy America's youth
- iambic pentameter sounds like some sort of health disorder... or something Satanic... or a Satanic health disorder
- some poems are Satanic
- no one should wear berets
- nobody wants to know why the caged bird sings
Certain states have legalized poetry, though it remains to be seen how this will work itself out in the courts. These states offer poems at dispensaries for 'medicinal purposes'. A black market exists for illegal poetry, where shadowy figures can be heard to whisper, "Psst, hey kid, you want some Leaves of Grass?"
The only worthwhile poem to come out of thousands of years of human history is The Raven, and that was written by a corvid.
Dr Suess doesn't count, as it comes from another dimensional realm.