Poems about creativity often serve as inspiring explorations of the human imagination, capturing the essence of artistic expression and the limitless possibilities of the mind.
These poems about creativity delve into the process of creation, celebrating the act of shaping thoughts and emotions into words or images. They may reflect on the struggles and triumphs of artists, the muse’s elusive nature, or the transformative power of poems about creativity in the face of adversity.
Poets, through their verses, get into the depths of imagination, conveying the joy of invention, the struggles of the creative journey, and the profound impact of artistic endeavors on both the creator and the audience.
Ars Poetica by Archibald MacLeish
A poem should be palpable and mute
As a globed fruit,
As old medallions to the thumb,
Silent as the sleeve-worn stone
Of casement ledges where the moss has grown—
A poem should be wordless
As the flight of birds.
Read the full poem here.
This poem reflects on the nature of poetry and the creative process, emphasizing the importance of brevity and the power of suggestion in art.
When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer by Walt Whitman
When I heard the learn’d astronomer,
When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me,
When I was shown the charts and diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them,
When I sitting heard the astronomer where he lectured with much applause in the lecture-room,
How soon unaccountable I became tired and sick,
Till rising and gliding out I wander’d off by myself,
In the mystical moist night-air, and from time to time,
Look’d up in perfect silence at the stars.
While not explicitly about creativity, this poem explores the contrast between analytical knowledge and the wonder of direct experience, resonating with the spirit of creative discovery.
The Poet’s Occasional Alternative by Grace Paley
I was going to write a poem
I made a pie instead it took
about the same amount of time
of course the pie was a final
draft a poem would have had some
distance to go days and weeks and
much crumpled paper
the pie already had a talking
tumbling audience among small
trucks and a fire engine on
the kitchen floor
everybody will like this pie
it will have apples and cranberries
dried apricots in it many friends
will say why in the world did you
make only one
Read the full poem here.
Ars Poetica by C.W. Bryan
I swallowed an apricot seed when I was younger.
Everyone told me it was hard work to grow fruit trees
especially when winter marches south and tries
to pry all those tiny golden dots from stubborn
wooden hands. I kept it safe, though, tucked away
in the pit of my stomach where despair and embarrassment
lived. I fed it reassurances: I swallowed strawberry
sunsets and ate the pithy vernal blossoms of childhood.
I even drank the recommended 36 ozs of filtered water
every day. Years later now, its branches weave their way to my brain
alongside curious blue blood. Apricot juice seeps
into my bloodstream and fills my body with sweet, yellow-orange
nectar. Fruit falls out of my mouth, staining snow white pages
in splotches of optimism each time I sit down to write.
Ants by C.W. Bryan
I keep a journal to write down
good ideas for poems. It’s small, it
fits in every pocket: even the front
pocket of my jacket. Which is wonderful.
The only problem with it is that the one
idea that lives inside its tiny pages says,
“Ants actually taste a lot like lemons”
per my eight-year-old nephew. Now I’m not
saying that’s not a great idea for a poem
I’m just saying I don’t have
the authority to write it. Maybe you might.
Poems about creativity can come out of any idea. Creativity is a hard phenomenon to pin down. All we can do as artists is our best to capture its essesence.
The Poet’s Obligation by Pablo Neruda
To whoever is not listening to the sea
this Friday morning, to who ever is cooped up
in house or office, factory or woman
or street or mine or dry prison cell,
to him I come, and without speaking or looking
I arrive and open the door of his prison,
and a vibration starts up, vague and insistent,
a long rumble of thunder adds itself
to the weigh of the planet and the foam,
the groaning rivers of the ocean rise,
the star vibrates quickly in its corona
and the sea beats, dies, and goes on beating.
So. Drawn on by my destiny,
I ceaselessly must listen to and keep
the sea’s lamenting in my consciousness,
I must feel the crash of the hard water
and gather it up in a perpetual cup
so that, wherever those in prison may be,
wherever they suffer the sentence of the autumn,
I may be present with an errant wave,
I may move in and out of the windows,
and hearing me, eyes may lift themselves,
asking “How can I reach the sea?”
And I will pass to them, saying nothing,
the starry echoes of the wave,
a breaking up of foam and quicksand,
a rustling of salt withdrawing itself,
the gray cry of sea birds on the coast.
So, though me, freedom and the sea
will call in answer to the shrouded heart.