Like the original, The Crafty Poet II is organized into ten sections. We again end with "Revision," but this time we also begin with it in "Revising Your Process." That section is followed by one on "Entryways into Poems" which considers how a poet might get going with a poem and how a poet might pull in a reader with humor and enticing titles. There is in-depth discussion of the importance of choosing the right words; using syntax, line breaks, and spacing to advantage; and enhancing the music of poems. There is a meaty section on how to add complication to your poems, another on how to divert or transform your poems from their original intention, and another on special forms of poems. In "Expanding the Material" three poets consider how to write poetic sequences using paintings, photographs, and history. The final section, "Revision," moves beyond the usual advice to “get rid of adjectives” as one poet offers ways to revise via sound, another offers a series of expansion strategies, and, finally, poet Dick Allen issues a warning against excessive revision.
All ten sections include three craft tips, each provided by an experienced, accomplished poet. Each of these thirty craft tips is followed by a Model poem and a Prompt based on the poem. Each model poem is used as a mentor, again expressing the underlying philosophy of the first book that the best teacher of poetry is a good poem. You will find that the model poems receive more analysis than in the first book and that the prompts are a bit more challenging. Each prompt is followed by two Sample poems which suggest the possibilities for the prompts and should provide for good discussion about what works and what doesn’t. Each section includes a Poet on the Poem Q&A about the craft elements in one of the featured poet’s poems. Each section concludes with a Bonus Prompt, each of which provides a stimulus on those days when you just can’t get your engine started.