Can the Title be Longer than the Poem?

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I’ve read a good deal of poetry where the title served as the first line or where the title was the same as the first line, like Walt Whitman’s “A Noiseless Patient Spider” or so many of Emily Dickinson’s poems. While incorporating the title into poems is something that has been around for a while, I wanted to see if there were ever any poems where the title is longer then the entire poem.


The answer is yes.


There is a genre of poetry called blank poetry. What is blank poetry? It is when a poem has a title that is accompanied by a following poem that just happens to have no words. To try writing blank poetry is to try an experimental style that shows what a title alone on a blank page can do.


Below are some examples of blank poetry. Enjoy and let me know if you’ve ever heard of blank poetry before.


“On Going to Meet a Zen Master in the Kyushu Mountains and Not Finding Him”
Don Paterson



“In Memory of the Horse David, Who Ate One of My Poems”
James Wright



“Poem of the End”
Vasilisk Gnedov




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