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Types of Sound Poetry

Sound poetry is type of poetry that resides within its own spectrum. Sound poetry is an artistic form (like poetry) but it is a performance. It isn’t like poetry wherein the reader can add drama to the lifeless words. Sound poetry is the use of written language and phonetic sounds. Many verses of sound poems do not have any words involved at all just primitive sounds accompanied by crazy body movements to dramatize the sounds. These sounds often have no meaning. During a sound poetry performance, the poet may hold a picture or an object whilst still making obnoxious (yet meaningful) sounds. Many poets engage in sound poetry as it allows them to use the specific sounds they hear in their mind when they ready contemplate the literary piece.  This yet again pushes the known fact that sound poetry is a performance.

Although it may not seem so there are many types of sound poetry. One of such is sound poetry involving sounds from nature. A poet may curate a poetic piece that describes the sunnier days of their life. The times were their senses where awakened to joy and content. The poet will try to emulate the sounds they associate with those times or even produce sounds that are light and joyous representing sunshine and happier moments. Imagery is a powerful aspect of sound poetry. It helps the sound poet with terms or concepts they feel they cannot accurately convey. A sound poet conveying a poem centered on a nature theme will incorporate green and bright colored imagery.

Another type of sound poetry involves electric sounds. Some sound poets record themselves performing their poem. The sound poet then employs computers and sound systems to add an electronic feel to their poetic piece. You will still hear hissing, moaning, meowing, hollering and cooing but all sounds will be electrically enhanced. Many sound poets who like to modify their voice outputs electrically do so because they like the live and organic manufacturing of sounds, but they want to add that futuristic twist. Such sound poets are not caught up in the technologies of the far future but are caught up in the expansive art gallery they have in their mind.

Dada is another style of sound poetry.  Cubism, Futurism, Constructivism, and Expressionism Dada began in Zurich, Switzerland in amid the brutality of World War I (1914–18). Dada was the first art movement where the focus of the artists was not on crafting aesthetically pleasing pieces of art but on making pieces that generated difficult questions about society, the role of the artist in this era, and the eternal purpose of art.

There is no verified statement about the origin of the movement’s name. Some people say that a German artist Richard Helsabeck plunged a knife at into a dictionary, where it landed on a picture of a “dada”, a French term for a hobby horse. Others say that it resonates with the first words of a child. Sound poetry is indeed an art form in its own right.

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