I'd like to write an essay about musicality in verse.
Diction plays a part in it. Also, the mysterious (to me) space around lines, phrases, stanzas. Space created by emotional intensity, or the obliquity of meaning.
Silence. Rest note. ("Rest Note" - good book title. copyright HG)
Music in poetry like color &/or spatial design in painting(?)
A potential weakness in American poetry : this framing space gets lost when the poet gropes for expansiveness, running-on, getting-it-all-said, tumbling from one joke to the next, "windy discoursing".
Then the poem sounds too much like talk.
The space of traditional metrics & rhyme was a kind of template for spatial (musical) control.
We got bored with it.
But complexity & resistance add interest.
I can no longer read poems that only sound like somebody "talking clever" at me.
But there are as many difficulties & pitfalls with "musicality". Falling in love with the sound of your own fricatives. Close reading of the "e" vowels. Mantic yammer.
Ominous, portentous ponderosa. The three word line, dropped like a tong of bricks.
Is it possible to speak of the "music" of an image?
That's what stopped me in my tracks when I picked up a book of Mandelstam (in translation, no less - & not the Merwin versions). The verbal image carried across its music - in a language with a completely different alphabet & sound.