I recently wrote a prose poem call “Tampa Raised You Up”, and it began like this:
You come to me on the 5:36 Tampa plane, suckled dry by sand and salt. You’re a husk of a boy, face drawn back across your skull after a stint as a homeless man. You’re a true criminal with beating hearts and shells in your pocket, stealing reminders of home. A second home, a third home, a never home, because I’m all you have now.
You first question is likely: what makes this a poem if it has no lines?
Well, if I am writing well, a prose poem will have poetic elements that travel to the edge of the page and only break lines when there is no more space at this proverbial end. So a prose poem is like this conglomerate of poetry and prose, as the name suggests.
Among scholarly people who sit around with monocles discussing the elements of poetry before a hearth, there is an argument:
Is prose poetry an actual thing?
What do you think?