‘Poetry can flourish in age of social media’

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1911

THE EMERGENCE of social media platforms is also the best time for poetry to flourish.

“I think this is the age where people like to read short writings. [I]f properly applied, this could be an age for poetry,” poet Mookie Katigbak Lacuesta said during the “Tres Marias: Booklaunch and Conversation with Authors” last March 24 at the Solidaridad Bookstore.

Lacuesta, an author from the UST Publishing House, cited the “Instagram poets,” or Instragram users who post poems for other young writers online as “social media influencers.”

Literary pedagogues, however, should educate young writers that not all poems in social media are considered “real poems,” Lacuesta said.

Che Sarigumba, lifestyle editor of daily tabloid Pilipino Mirror, said poetry writing has become a way for social media users to express their feelings.

“Napapanahon na ang pagsusulat ng tula ngayon, lalo na’t halos lahat ng tao naka-online. Maikli ang pagbasa ng tula e, hindi katulad ng nobela o ng maikling kuwento. Nagagamit [siya] bilang magandang paraan […] para mailabas ang nararamdaman,” Sarigumba said.

Sarigumba cautioned readers to be critical and discerning toward poems they read online.

“Pero sa mga nakababasa naman, tingnan din natin kung ano ba ang ibig sabihin ng mga ‘yun, kasi kailangan may lalim ‘yan e,” she said.

Alice Sun Cua, a creative nonfictionist, emphasized the importance of “mindful reading” in literary works like poetry.

“[W]hen reading, you have to make sure that you’re reading mindfully. Others kasi, [they] would just simply read. Kailangan din isa-isip at isapuso lagi ang [binabasa],” Sun Cua said.

Reading prose is a great aid to aspiring poets, Sun Cua added.

The books of the three women writers were relaunched during the event.

Lacuesta’s “Hush Harbor,” published by UST in 2017, is a poetry collection written during her writing residency in Iowa in 2015.

Sarigumba’s “Puso pa rin ang Nagpasiya,” published by Vibal Publishing in 2016, is a romance novel that won first place in the Pinoy Story Writing Contest of the National Book Development Board.

Sun-Cua’s “Kissing through a Handkerchief and Other Travel Tales,” published by the UST Publishing House in 2017, is a collection of essays and “contemplative accounts” of her travels to different countries, such as Spain and Germany.

Hosted by the Philippine Center of International PEN (Poets, Playwrights, Essayists, Novelists), the event was held in celebration of National Women’s Month and International Women’s Day.

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