On the Line

A day late with this, apologies, but here is the last post’s disarranged/rearranged poem as it was written:

Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

It’s from Macbeth, Act 5 (?), and if I’d known that – which, given the number of times I’ve seen that play, I should have – I’d have know that it was written in iambic pentameter and the line-breaks would have fallen into place. Now I’m wondering if modern poets, at least those who invent each poems’ form to suit (create? develop?) the subject-language relationship of that poem would be more difficult, or easier? For example:

‘the apartment was vacated by a gay couple who moved to the country for fun they moved a day too soon even the stabbings are helping the population explosion though in the wrong country and all those liars have left the UN the Seagram Building’s no longer rivalled in the interest not that we need liquor (we just like it)

and the little box is out on the sidewalk next to the delicatessen so the old man can sit on it and drink beer and get knocked off it by his wife later in the day while the sun is still shining

oh god it’s wonderful to get out of bed and drink too much coffee and smoke too many cigarettes and love you so much’

Having just typed this out I know exactly where the poet put the line breaks, I can hear them, but will I still know it in the morning?

 

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