For the two ideas that I personally considered the most important was first of all when Hugo stated that "Assumptions lie behind the work of all writers." Maybe it's because I've been watching National Geographic for too long or something like that, but I always assumed that, when you are trying to make something that you want people to take notice of, you need to have solid facts behind it or no one will pay attention. Considering the creativity of poetry, I can see how assumptions are useful their, but with all writers? That much seem like a load of hog wash.
The other idea that caught my eye was when Hugo talked about the exercise he gave his students that his own teacher used to give him. It really struck me when he said that "While the student is concentrating on the problems of the exercise, the real problems go away for a moment simply because they are ignored, and with the real problems gone the poet is free to say what he never expected and always wanted to say." In my experience, ignoring a problem tends to only make it worse. However, I can also say that I can understand what it is like to block out all external issues and focus solely on one particular thing, if only for a short amount of time.
Question: If we are supposed to ignoring the world around us and making assumptions about it, do solid facts have any place in it or have they all been cast aside like an old glove?
As for making poems myself, there has been some progress in that. I find that both reading from the book and making my own poems causes me to see things in a different light. It is as though I was seeing things in black and white before and now they're in technicolor. That being said, simply reading about making poems is something that only allows for so much interpretation since all it does is talk and show examples. In contrast, making my own poems allows me to use that knowledge and see just how hard or easy making a poem can be.
In regards to the process I use for making a poem, depending of what poem I'm trying to make, I may think long and hard about the subject and words or I'll just write about the first things that come to mind. Often times, it works better when I do the second thing since it allows me to use my imagination and make something I my not have intended to write. Sadly though, there are a few things that hold me back. For starters, I'm my own worse critic. While my friends, family, classmates, etc. all may think that I made beautiful piece, I personally will not know what to make of it or worse think that it is a terrible piece. Secondly, when I am trying to write about something specific, it is often times an activity that rattles my brain trying to figure out what words to use that would be describe the subject I'm trying to depict.