Thank you for this. As a working artist, I can struggle describing my own work. As a fiction writer, I often indulge in prose that can seek the Rubicon of poetic form. Yet, I rarely ever describe my work as poetic.

My colleague Esther Spurrill-Jones is a very accomplished and disciplined poet. Her stanza form is impeccable. When she writes short fiction, her poetic sensibilities shine, but I would not (and I don’t think she does) call her stories poetry.

Once in a while, I write a piece that mangles definitions so much that labels feel arbitrary. Please don’t feel obligated to read this, but when reading your essay here, I couldn’t help but think of the following piece. It crosses all the lines. It is neither clearly fiction nor non-fiction. It is poetic in nature, but prose in form. Written to be read aloud, it has a distinct, repeating meter, but it has no stanza organization.

Is it prose or poetry? I usually call it prose, but I suppose my label is up for interpretation. Your thoughts here made me think about that again.

Written by

Writer. Runner. Marine. Airman. Former LGBTQ and HIV activist. Former ActUpNY and Queer Nation. Polyglot. Middle-aged, uppity faggot. jamesfinnwrites@gmail.com

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