even though words
are all around me
–on page after page
in book after book
on shelf after shelf
–on the back of every
in the shower
–in every envelope
of every piece
of junk mail
in the mailbox
–on every label
of every box and can
in the kitchen.
I still cannot seem
to find the right ones
for a poem.
It’s a good thing
silence and I have
when I sit still
and listen, she
reminds me — poems
take coaxing — words
can be shy — maybe
I wrote poetry yesterday, about feeling dry, needing sunshine, kisses, and some sort of renewal before the ink might flow again. Today, I’ve spent too much time trying — to get something interesting down on paper — to find a topic that inspired me or a writing prompt that would push me into creativity.
I found out what I already knew, deep down.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’ve written today. I (semi) regularly put my backside in the chair, and write whatever comes out, even on days that I don’t really think it will be worth the effort. I know there’s something valuable in the discipline it takes to write, whether I feel like it or not. Today, this may be all I’ve gotten out of the exercise: a check mark on my list for a task completed.
But I know too, that what I really need is a few hours with a warm beverage, a comfy blanket, a good book. Perhaps I’ll dig into the pint of Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia I’ve got hidden in the freezer.
Life is good, my friends, even on days when the words seem to fight me at every scratch of the pen. I trust the voices in my head that say a some good literature and perhaps a nap will kick-start me like a full cup of java on a cold, wintry morning.
Hopefully I’ll be back tomorrow with something to show for myself.
sometimes the ink in my veins from my pen starts to dry cannot stretch across the page to completethis simple poem
some mornings my soul, like a sponge, squeezed too long needs a drink, needs the rain to soak deeply and revive
this morning I am weary, stretched too thin letters fading on the parchment I need to walk in the sunlight feel the wind tug at my hair
let me drink long, wet kisses from your lips until I’m filled and these words darkly rich will find the new ink finish the poem That I began.
ABOUT: I woke up, with the image of this poem in my head, the way the ink faded with each line, from left to right. I knew it would be about feeling dry, and needing to rest, to soak in beauty and life so I could write again.
The Earth is the strong, silent type. His broad shoulders cast a shadow wherever he goes. He looks awkward walking about, a little bit uncomfortable standing. He seems most at ease when he sits or reclines, relaxed with a smile on his face. He’s dependable; if he says he’ll do it, you can count on him to keep his word.
He’s friendly, and gracious, giving the benefit of the doubt to all. He is a people person, though he’s not comfortable in the spotlight, he’s happier listening, watching from the sidelines, observant to a fault. He rarely gets angry, it takes years for his temper to build. Once it erupts, he cools down quickly, and becomes his happy self again.
The Earth is ruddy and weathered — with lines on his hands and lines on his face — in that attractive way of old cowboys who spend their lives driving cattle across the plains. His skin turns to leather in the heat of the sun and he strums his guitar by the campfire when the stars dot the cooling night sky. You’ll hear him humming softly, especially when he’s working, a tune that reminds you of childhood, the song you can’t quite place.
You may think the Earth is unaware, but he isn’t. He’s the quiet one who feels everything, sees and hears everything. He is a patient listener, never judging, always nodding understanding. He remembers what you’ve forgotten: when it last rained, which way to Albuquerque, and where you left your keys.
ABOUT THIS PROSE:
Inspired by “The Book of Qualities” by J. Ruth Gendler, this bit of creative prose reminds me that everything seems to have a spirit, a personality, even those things we call inanimate. This is, in part, what poetry is, telling the world how patient is the earth, or how seductive is the full moon.