According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, poetry is defined as simply “metrical writing“.
However, their second definition is a bit more in-depth, describing poetry as “writing that formulates a concentrated imaginative awareness of experience in language chosen and arranged to create a specific emotional response through meaning, sound, and rhythm,” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary).
The origins of the word stems from the word “poet”. Poet comes from the Greek word “poein/poiein” which means “to create” or “to compose” which then turns into the Greek word “poetes/poietes” which mean “maker, author, or poet“. This Greek word then translated to Latin as “poeta” which means “poet“.
Now, the Latin word “poeta” later inspired the medieval Latin word “poetria“, which is where the word poetry originates from.
Collectively, poetry uses a rhythmical pattern and format to string words together into an aesthetic piece.
For a more scholarly and philosophical perspective, check out T. S. Elliot’s essay on poetry theory titled “Tradition and the Individual Talent” posted through the Poetry Foundation.
Here are some poetry resources (poems, poets, etc):
Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion; it is not the expression of personality, but an escape from personality. But, of course, only those who have personality and emotions know what it means to want to escape from these things.T. S. Elliot