Estonian Rhymed Chronicle

There seems to be a quiet but tangible tension between rhymed poetry and free verse. On the one hand, many people still fail to see that the free verse, more than a century old by now, is somehow different from everyday speech; on the other hand, other people often tend to see rhythmic and rhymed poetry as outdated. No one is right, because free verse is free of rhyme and rhythm, but it is still verse. Yet, rhymes do not thrive only in amateur poetry, but also in rap music, where even the most sceptical mind can find skill and witty metaphors – this will be demonstrated at our festival by dancer, choreographer and rapper Päär Pärenson. Not to mention the fact that rhythm schemes are lively in places where, at first glance, free verse should flow. The best figurehead of this tendency is one of the most brilliant poets of her generation Eda Ahi, who was nominated for the poetry prize of the Estonian Cultural Endowment with her collection Julgeolek (Security). Even though it is easy to connect Jürgen Rooste to urgent, beat literature inspired free verse, he has also produced rhyme and reason. Wimberg is the master of playful, funny and chanting rhymes. Thus, there is more than plenty of rhymed words in current Estonian poetry, which could not possibly be placed only in the context of personal albums and party songs. Rhymes will ring at the Estonian Writers’ Union on Friday, 29 May at 7 pm, and the performers will also include Julius Juurmaa and Birk Rohelend.


Estonian Writers’ Union