I write a lot of poems. Only about one in ten is worth a darn. I wish I knew a way to make this ratio higher. What's worse is, there's no pattern to creative inspiration. One day you might write two good poems in a row. At other times, it might be a week or two before you write anything decent.
It's the same for most poets. Even great poets like T.S. Eliot and Emily Dickinson wrote more duds than masterpieces. Both Ezra Pound and Walt Whitman wrote more bad lines than good over their careers. I won't name any living, working poets by name -- but I'll say, I haven't seen many, if any, 21st century exceptions to this rule. And that's only seeing poets' published or posted works.
My explanation for it is that we write poems for many different reasons, only some of which are connected to creating a poem for sharing or for publication. The only other answer I can think of is that writing good poems is just really tough and it takes a bit of luck like fishing or golf.
Another possibility is it's just darned hard to do it all alone. Poetry is one of the only arts (like painting) where the artist is truly alone. Novelists have editors, musicians have producers, actors and actresses have directors and makeup people, and costume people, and people to blink for them, etc... Even dancers have a dance partner or a few musicians around.
If you're a poet, it's all you. You think alone, write alone, and for the most part are the only "gatekeeper" of your works. It's a big job, and most poets resist being edited anyway.
What do you think? Have you experienced poetic ratio? Are there other reasons forit?
Found any hacks to get around it? Let me know!
Poems Written: 310
Rejections: 20 (13 tiered)
Poem written today: "Star Pools"