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Make your poems work.

This is not an exhortation to force your poetry. Indeed, a later tip will be, “Don’t force it!” A poem must have a purpose. It needs to do something. That something might be purging your soul or trying to persuade others that a war is wrong or right. It might be trying to get someone to become your lover. Make sure that the poem has a purpose, even if that purpose is merely to exist as the art of purposelessness. The purpose doesn’t have to be evident to the reader, although it often is. To the reader it can even be an apparently ambiguous purpose that will mask the real purpose of getting them to think or just disturbing them. When you write, have a purpose in mind.

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