In terms of the history of literature, romantic poetry dates to the Romantic Period between 1790 and 1830. Writers from this period focused on wonder, amazement and appreciation for nature, animals, possessions and people. The Romantics were considered idealists, and focused on freedom of expression, creativity and imagination. Through the use of the senses, poets expressed their love for their universe. Poets such as Keats, Byron, Shelly and Wordsworth painted pictures with words through the use of imagery, metaphor and simile. Poets today continue to look to the poets of the romantic period for inspiration and motivation.
Romantic poetry signifies the passion that the writer possesses for the beauty of the world around her. Poets express their strong feelings to lovers, kings, queens, art, land, nature, animals, God, history, education, philosophy and so much more.
The primary function of a romantic poem is to verbalize one's imagination. Using all of the senses, poets create a beautiful image that allows readers to not only see and feel what the poet is describing, but actually smell, hear and taste the subjects discussed in a poem.
Some themes present in romantic poetry include: Freedom A common theme in romantic poetry presents itself in the context of freedom, rights and dignity for each individual. Romantic poetry portrays strong feelings against unjust social and political situations.
Nature A passionate appreciation and admiration for beautiful land, especially undisturbed pieces of land, is emphasized in Romantic poems.
Supernatural Romantic poems contain exotic images and stories of kings and fairies, gods and goddesses, and angels and spirits. Romantic poems explore uncharted territories of mysticism and wonder. Love The mystery, awe and power of love is central to many romantic poems. Not every romantic poem paints an image of happiness and satisfaction with a lover or loving relationship; many romantic poets composed poems that emphasized heartache and sadness for lost or unrequited love.
Any poem that clearly illustrates the poet's freedom and appreciation for any subject can be considered romantic. To easily write a romantic poem, use these suggestions: 1. Don't become overly concerned with rhyme or rhythm. Just write from your heart. 2. On a piece of paper or journal, write each of the senses (sight, sound, touch, smell, taste) leaving room under each to create a list. 3. Under each of the above categories, compose a list of adjectives, action verbs and other descriptive words that are specific to your subject. Be as descriptive and specific as possible. Phrases like "you are beautiful" or "you make me smile" are much less personal than "the light from your hazel eyes illuminates my heart," for example.
4. Write statements and phrases that use words from your list, making the phrases personal and heart-felt. Again, don't be concerned with form, order, rhyme or rhythm yet.
5. Read each phrase and consider rephrasing or editing using the following additions: Remove as many linking verbs and replace them with action verbs (e.g. "You are (linking verb) my life"--"Your presence feeds (action verb) my soul"; add a significant memory (song title, prized possession, intimate moment) that fits well in the flow of the phrases; add a specific sound, smell or color; add an absolute (a phrase set off by commas that may begin with a noun and an "-ing: verb, such as "Heart racing, I approach the exotic goddess"); use vivid words that paint a picture for the reader; get rid of cliches. Remember, the difference between a "cute" poem and the perfect romantic poem is the use of fresh, specific and vivid words and phrases.