I have always been inspired and influenced by peasent poetry, that is the poems and songs of the ordinary people, as they reflected the world as it was and as they would like it to be.
I also like the classics, though I do think that there was too much effort put in to the structure of some of the poems, losing the message in the process.
William Butler Yeats
USA / Canada
William Topaz Mc Gonagle
Gerald Manly Hopkins
Should I face been shot, and be asked for the one poet who has influenced by work as a writer, it has to be the Bard of Ayrshire, Robbie Burns.
Should I then be told to recite his poems, I would be despached to meet him double quick!!!
The reason I like Burns so much, is that he was at the forefront of the peoples poetry movement, in that a person did not have to be a raving intellectual with big complex messages and doublem messages in a poem to be a writer.
For him, poetry was to entertain, campaign, and educate, as opposed to have grander allusions of greatness, as was the spirit of the writers in the broader Weaver Poets movement, of whom a large chapter dwelt in Ireland.
The first poem of his I was aware of as a child was "Flow Gently Sweet Afton", seen on a box of cigarettes my mother was smoking, and this in time inspired the poem "Culture on a Cigarette Packet".
And some say smoking is bad for you!!!
Indeed, such strange places Culture leaves her card!!!
On the lest, is a number of articles on poets who inspired me, and some of their poems that are favourites of mine are mentioned.