|Bust of Idiocrates|
Poetry is an art form in which language is used for its obfuscatory qualities in addition to, or instead of, meaningful and useful content. Poetry has a long history, and early attempts to define poetry, such as Aristotle's Poetics, focused on the various uses of speech in rhetoric, drama, song and charming the togas off of potential bed buddies. Contemporary poets, such as Dylan Thomas, often identify poetry not as a literary genre within a set of genres, but as noble way of remaining unemployed and virtually useless to society. Poetry often uses condensed forms and conventions to reinforce or expand the meaning of the underlying words or to invoke irrational or sensual experiences in the reader, as well as using devices such as assonance, alliteration and the rhythm method to achieve musical or incendiary effects.