I began writing poetry as a child. Then I was married to a poet for ten years. During the 1970's I had the priviledge of hosting, in my office at The American Film Institute, POETS GATHERING, and now, for the last twenty-seven years, living alone in bliss, I have written, perhaps, 5,000 poems, a portion of which are posted on this website and indexed under Individual Poems. Clicking on a title in the Table of Contents will bring up an index for poems in a Collection, Series or Sequence.
On July 30, 1998 I started to post The Desolations Poems, the fruits of a project to write at least one poem in each of the Poetic Forms Used in English. Every day I wrote a poem in a different form. There are now 338 Form Poems posted on eleven pages of this Website. Each poem bears its Form Name. For a year, the project was an ongoing form of delight and development! -- see the Chandas quote in the Introduction to The Jaipur Sequence. Many of the Forms that I have not yet posted are what I call "subject matter" poems and take more time and study to compose. If there are "English" forms you do not find here, let me know. I will be glad to attempt a version.
The Poetic Forms in English project is partly the result of having found it quite maddening not to be able to find a poem in a particular form when I wanted to study that form without having to institute an often time-consuming and tedious search. One can find descriptions of forms, but few examples of forms, where the form is exemplified, named, illustrated or scanned. When this project is completed, everyone will be able to quickly find at least one example of each Poetic Form Used in English (more or less -- as new forms can be, and are, created daily). A rough estimate is that there are about 400 (more or less traditional) forms.
In addition to the finished poems here posted, I have also kept a scan/worksheet of each poem which I would be pleased to share with those who would find them of interest. My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. I am also open to questions and discussion about any of the forms. For, though I ignored traditional forms for many years, they are now one of my major forms of study and pleasure and, no doubt, the greatest honing device for developing a love for language ever invented.
Having started seriously studying Sanskrit in October, 1998, I may soon pursue a growing passion for the 800 Sanskrit Forms and the 500 Dravidian Forms. Indeed, I have, for many years used Devanagari (script) in my Textile Art, both for its meaning and as a decorative element. The rhythms of Vedic (Sanskrit) chanting also form the underlying beat in much of my poetry.
I have learned much about the practice of traditional forms from the masters of North Indian Classical Music, not the least important element of which is "Practice," "Do It," -- don't worry too much about inspiration, talent or perfection. These will, if you practice dedicatedly enough -- and Saraswati willing -- take care of themselves. Art is a practice shared between you and God -- and, beginning less than a decade ago, a gift one can now share in cyberspace.
During the late summer of 2001 I was informed that many of my poems were being plagiarized from this website by a member (or members) of AOL's Poetry Boards. At least 116 poems were stolen and reposted on AOL Poetry Boards over others' signatures. These same plagiarizers have also stolen works from at least ten other poets.
For information regarding this unconsciencable copyright infringement, go to PLAGIARISM ON AOL POETRY BOARDS and to the MESSAGE ID LIST that documents when and from where the poems were stolen and when and where they were illegally reposted on AOL Poetry Boards. Also available are my SUGGESTED REMEDY and DMCA COMPLAINT, as well as AOL's RESPONSE at the bottom of the MESSSAGE ID LIST.
Plagiarism seems to be a fact of life on the INTERNET. However, I still believe the INTERNET is the greatest medium ever created for poets, indeed all artists, to communicate with the world. Therefore, despite this recent annoyance, I encourage all poets, writers, artists, painters, musicians -- all who create -- to continue using the INTERNET for the dissemination of their work. Even having to fight plagiarism, it's still worth the hassle.
Therefore, I have posted this CAUTION with the hope that if anyone steals your works, this documentation may help you deal with the situation.
Jan Haag may be reached via e-mail: email@example.com
BY JAN HAAG
POETRY + MUSIC + ESSAYS + TRAVEL + FICTION + TEXTILE
INTRODUCTION + HAAG'S BIO