poetic license


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

poetic license

1. Intentional violations of or deviations from traditional forms, standards, or syntax by a writer in order to achieve a particular effect. Don't get hung up on adhering too strictly to iambic pentameter—you can use a bit of poetic license if it means preserving the meaning and rhythm you want. Any two-bit poet can string together a jumble of words and call it poetic license.
2. Minor changes to or misrepresentations of facts or history in the name of art or for the sake of an agenda. People complain about minor inaccuracies in historical dramas, but honestly they wouldn't be able to make the movies marketable without using a little poetic license.
See also: license, poetic
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

poetic license

liberties or license of the type taken by artists, especially poets, to violate patterns of rhyme, harmony, structure, etc. I couldn't tell whether he kept making spelling mistakes or if it was just poetic license.
See also: license, poetic
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

poetic license

Also, artistic license. The liberty taken by a writer or artist in deviating from conventional form or fact to achieve an effect. For example, I've never seen grass or a tree of that color; but that's artistic license. [Late 1700s]
See also: license, poetic
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

artistic/poetic ˈlicence

(often ironic) the freedom of artists or writers to change facts in order to make a story, painting, etc. more interesting or beautiful: In the book, a fair amount of artistic licence has been taken with the timing of historical events so that they fit with the story.I allowed myself a little poetic licence in describing the table as an antique.
Licence in this idiom means ‘freedom to do or say whatever you want’.
See also: artistic, licence, poetic
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
Mark Hird, managing director of Tavistock Group, parent company to Poetic License Distillery
Poetic License, a series of regular live events held in various venues around Beirut, aims to celebrate poetic expression in all its forms.
Her introductory remarks about the sense of poetic license are 1) that " For all the recent talk of opening up the canon,...
'According to my mood' Benjamin Zephaniah I have poetic license, i WriTe thE way i waNt.
With Poetic License, I've been more interested in encouraging local readers to comment poetically and interactively on contemporary events.
(See Black Issues Book Review, March-April 2004, POETIC LICENSE, "Almost Famous.") With several slam competition awards to her credit, she is fast becoming a rising star for a new generation of black lesbian voices.
No, but giving Chatterjee some poetic license, at least in terms of expounding on theories, strategies can certainly be made safer.
The mistake, however, is a serious one, and if I'd had my wits about me as an editor, I wouldn't have let the author mix up his tenses in manuscript or allowed him in page proof to lapse into poetic license. Both of us regret the injury done to the magazine and apologize, wholeheartedly, to its readers.
This rather arresting interpretation turns out to be an instance of extravagant poetic license. A native Japanese speaker would regard the translation of genshi into "original child" as an unnatural semantic contortion, and it is unlikely that any Japanese person ever embraced this construal--one which appears to have originated with John Hersey, who rendered genshi badukan thus in Hiroshima.
More often, readers simply dismiss the connection as playful poetic license, and, in truth, it is a playful poem.
The poems range from serious to hilarious as Layne delightfully takes poetic license with the stuff of teachers' daily lives: beginning readers, grammar, spelling, composition instruction, adolescent literacy issues, reading aloud, and teaching standards.
Aldo Onorato's edition of Leonardo Dati's tragedy Hyempsal reconstructs with rigorous philological method and sharp critical acumen a fifteenth-century text that is based on (but with several significant cases of poetic license) Sallust's account of the Bellum lugurthinum.
One permits poetic license. The other cannot escape what has happened, no matter the poetic license.
One cannot question the translators' expertise, but one could ask, "What is translation?" Vladimir Nabokov, in the foreword to his translation of Pushkin's Eugene Onegin, asks: "Can Pushkin's poem, or any other Russian poem really be translated?" Rein's poems in their English version are true to the poet's craft, since the translators took very little "poetic license" with form and content.