The form of lyric poetry, which in the first instance contains intellectual experiences, is called the thought-lyricism, also the idea of lyricism and philosophical lyricism. It is not the immediate experience (cf. Erlebnislyrik) or, as in the ballad, the narrative in the foreground, but philosophical, religious and generally intellectual-ideological content. The idea is not conveyed through a symbol, but rather as an inner experience. The lyrical ego therefore tries to attain clarity through thoughts or facts, to itself, or even to the external world. The different sides of the respective object are usually shown, and they are oscillated between intuition and reflection. At the same time, the idea of love is separated from the doctrinal and purposive poetry, but can be indirectly didactic or doctrinal through the depicted.
Difficulties of the term
The term, on the other hand, points out what is at stake: namely, a lyric, which has above all thoughts to the content and thought-experiences, and on the other hand it is quite problematic. At any rate, on closer inspection.
One might assume that poetry, which is not classed as an idea, is thoughtless in return. That’s not the case. Poetry, even if it does not represent the seizure of the lyric self by inner experience, can indirectly represent thoughts and show through a sober, objective presentation the seizure.
Important: This means that thought-lyrik is primarily a mental experience and is distinguished by the strongly subjective participation of the lyrical ego, which distinguishes it from the objective, sober doctrine and poetry. This circumstance, however, does not in any case allow the conclusion that “other lyricism” would otherwise be thoughtless.
Already since ancient times the first beginnings and proofs of a thoughtfulness have been found. Later on there were very important representatives abroad, such as George Byron, Alfred de Vigny or Percy Bysshe Shelley. But, above all, German poetry is strongly influenced by ebendieser Ideenlyrik.
Antiquity is mainly known for its teachings, which are an object of culture, society, literature and science. However, the poets Hesiod and Horace already find individual approaches which allow us to conceive the nature of the idea, although these poems are often filled with many doctrinal elements, which are often superficial.
The Middle Ages is dominated by doctrinal lyric poetry. But here, too, there are forms of thought, as in the courtly lyric poetry of the poet Regenbogen or Friedrich von Hausen and strongly in the political poems Vogelweide. The renaissance and humanism, however, strengthen the scholarly poetry (cf. poeta doctus).
The baroque epoch, however, ultimately elevates the intellectual lyrical form. In the Baroque, it is mostly epigrams and sonnets, in which such intellectual experiences are processed. Often, the lyric self moves between the contrasting ideas of the divine beyond and the sinful, transitory life (cf. Memento mori). Baroque representatives are Martin Opitz, Andreas Gryphius and Paul Fleming.
The Enlightenment is also aware of the illusion of the mind, with an instructive character once again being brought to the fore. The interplay between creation and God is often presented. It is therefore the theodic thought, which is lyrically processed. This is the question of why a God allows suffering if he has the omnipotence and the goodness to prevent it (for example, Albrecht von Haller, “On the Origin of the Evil”).
Further examples can be found in the Enlightenment Barthold Heinrich Brockes (“Earthly Pleasure in God”) or Ewald Christian von Kleist (“Spring”). Numerous representatives can be found in the following years. Klopstock, Lavater, and Wieland, too, contribute to the thoughtfulness with a gloomy form, while Liscow or Lessing, above all, use the poem form of the epigram for their thoughtful works.
The works of late Goethe are often also thoughtful, such as “Parabolic,” “God and the World,” as well as “Epigrammatic”. In Friedrich Schiller, for example, the poems “To the joy”, “Words of faith” and “The ideal and life” illustrate the strongest expression. The tension between the senses and morality is usually represented.
The romantics Novalis, Grillparzer, or Platen are inspired by modernity. Also Nietzsche, Rilke, mornings can be called. The present offers us an enormous variety of lyric poetry, which reveals the seminal thought. It is even questionable whether a distinction is useful at the present time, since narrative poetry or teaching poetry has become less frequent, and a large part of the lyric works must be regarded as a mental illusion.
On the origin of the evil, Albrecht von Haller (1734)
Earthly Pleasure in God, The Heathen, Barthold Heinrich Brockes
The Spring, Ewald Christian von Kleist (1749)
To the joy, Friedrich Schiller (1785)