Many months ago, I voiced my opinions on free-verse poetry and complained how it appears more and more like places in THE NEW YORKER and ASIMOV’S SCIENCE FICTION. I like poety hemmed in by rules, rhyme, meter, scansion, and the like.
While eating breakfast this morning, I read through the 7 poems in the October/November issue of ASIMOV’S. All but one of them were free verse. Now, this could be because of editorial preference, or it could be that fewer people are writing traditional poetry. But whatever the reason, I felt it incumbant upon myself to help equal out the ratio. I decided to write a poem that I would submit to ASIMOV’S, one that would follow meter and rhyme and all of the stuff that I like about poetry.
Well, since ASIMOV’S is a science fiction magazine, the poem would need to have some element of science fiction in it. I thought back to poems I liked, and instantly got an idea. I finished breakfast and within about 2 hours, wrote a poem that I call “Schrodinger’s Intersection”. The 6 verse, 30 line poem is a kind of retelling of Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken”, from a quantum mechanical perspective. And just like in Frost’s original poem, “Schrodinger’s Intersection” follows the ABAAB rhyme scheme for each verse.
And after having re-read the poem just now, I have to admit that in addition to “The Road Less Traveled”, the poem was also influenced (much less consciously) by shunn‘s short story “Two Paths in the Forest Toulemonde”, which I first read back in 1993 and which has stayed with me ever since.
I doubt it will be accepted, but I’m sending it out anyway, in protest to all of the free-verse appearing in these magazines. I guess that I have some conservative blood in me after all!
Incidentally, this is the first bit of poetry that I’ve written since my first fiction class in my creative writing minor in college back in 1993.