The term Instapoet bothers me. It seems to me that it has a negative meaning. It is generally in media articles used to group together writers that have chosen to publish snippets of their poetry on Instagram and have had some success in doing so. I also cannot help but notice that a large part of Instapoets are women.
Instapoets versus ‘Instapoets’ The apostrophes used maybe to deride those writers, like me, and maybe you, and to say you have merely captured the attention of many on a social media platform. Whilst typically in the poems using line breaks (Or, some might argue, inserting a line break after every three words) and taking on controversial subjects, such as feminism.
When I think of women that were but a century ago using pen names to even be published, and that women can now self publish their experiences, from abuse, to being belittled. These words give me, and many others, strength. And hope too. What was taboo is now not. Voices in vast majorities are ringing out, and are being heard.
Jennae Cecelia and Amanda Lovelace were two poets that first set me on the path of discovery of self – love, and self – care. Concepts that had never been presented to me were now in black and white. Why was I feeling so alone, empty, angry? These voices answered the questions.
I have had a small dawning recently that the books I hold in my hands have made me feel normal.
I do not subscribe to the view that Instapoets are any less a poet, because they are not a classical poet, or a beat poet. Poetry changes over the years, as does our language, fashion, and culture. Your poetry is not any less because you choose to share your words on a social media platform, perform them at an Open Mic night, or keep them to yourself. Poetry is an open dialogue that can connect us all together. Today I feel incredibly grateful that I have poetry.
J. R. Rouge
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