There are so many disciplines within the literary world but the comments I overhear the most (usually while I'm haunting a local Chapters bookstore) is on the Discipline of Poetry. It has been my life experience that novice authors (and even I fell to this pitfall) think that this is the discipline to start with to get literary experience. Nothing can be further from the truth!!
We in this electronic, none emotional attachment to the written word society are along way from the Elizabethan Age of Poetry! This is perhaps the most difficult of the disciplines not to write poetry itself but to get to have it noticed by mainstream society at all. I have never checked on the sales of actual poetry books within bookstore chains but I would suspect that books in this genre are not be carted by the cart load up to the cash register.
So this brings me to the question which I have titled this posting; Does Poetry have a worth within the 21st Century? With the experience of nothing having just 1 but 4 Poetry books on the market (self published through lulu. More on lulu later) and having sold no more than a very conservative handful of books (even kept lowering my price) it is my personal opinion that other than a creative excise with the use of words and visualization that Poetry isn't worth alot in the 21st century.
Now I am definitively not saying there are not good poets and poetry out there. There is, but its a very selective market. This is not a discipline to start within if you are going to do this for even medium market sells try another discipline! But like I will always say Don't let me or anyone else stop you from discovering any of the disciplines including this one. Your experiences could be very easily different than my own!
now onwards; within this discipline I stuck to something with is close to my heart my spirituality. I have always written poetry easily, however my expression in this discipline I would have to describe to the novice as influenced by Dante Alighieri who wrote his poetry within an Act expression. Don't worry gang my poetry isn't in Latin! LOL. Another difference where Dante's poetry broadcast his strong Christianity and expressions of that belief form mine broadcasts the Old Wisdom (Paganism) across the Pantheons (not specific to a single Pantheon). I named the titles of 3 of my poem books after the three Greek Furies and the fourth I named after the Mermaid or some say Nightmare depending on the classification.