Coffee, Tea, Patio, Bed

“The poem finds me. I know it’s a poem when I hear it. I say the lines, and when the saying is right, I write down the lines. Almost always, the poem’s opening comes to me first. Sometimes I must write a bit before I get to the opening, before it reveals itself to me. I know it’s a poem when I connect with the opening lines.

At that point I have no real notion of where the poem is headed. I don’t know how it will end. I don’t want to know. I want the closing to be what is needed for the work, and not what I want from the closing.”

From “Letting Poetry, Prose & Conversation Flow”  by Michelle Elvy with Sam Rasnake  on Awkward Paper Cut

i had to share this bit of Sam’s process because, omigosh!, it’s exactly how I work and feel about writing, as well, which makes me think maybe my creative process is actually creative, after all. Sometimes I doubt myself. But I don’t doubt Sam Rasnake’s creativity. Read some of his work here.

Also, in the same issue, I listened to the video poem “Under a Manmade Sun” by R.W. Perkins. I just loved this poem because it’s the story of a generation, mine!, and so lyrical and cool and it’s just… teenage growing up in rural America life.

“From the days of dirt roads and analog, home-made Christmas cards and rabbit ears, from scratching, popping vinyl boys and girls, how did we become a digital age….”

Love those lines in the beginning and on it goes, taking you on a ride in that hot red Camaro, listening to The Doobie Brothers on AM radio and (maybe) toking a little doobie along the way to the now of the future. Not since I read Carrie Jerrel’s “Big Daddy” has a poem grabbed my gut in such a big way. I just can’t stop listening to it – just the same with Carrie’s poem. I go back and read it over and over.

I spent a good portion of Labor Day reading – what a treat it was as it was done in a leisurely, coffee and tea drinking on the patio then sofa then bed kinda way instead of my usual hit and run style of web reading. Other work I read (and you should too) and really loved:

“To Carry” by KJP Garcia

“Potato Protocols for the Aliens’ Arrival” by K. Bischoping on Exquisite Corpse

“Ignominious bubble and pop” by Ellen Wade Beals on Olentangy Review

“Howl” by James Lloyd Davis

“The Chance of Rain” by Pia Z. Ehrhardt  (Also, her story “The Owls of Solomon Place” in the new Oxford American is fantastic! You can buy it here.)

And now I must, MUST!, put down the laptop and go to bed…….to sleep, not read. TO SLEEP, NOT READ, CHARLOTTE!

‘night, all.

2 thoughts on “Coffee, Tea, Patio, Bed

  1. sleep well.
    that is a pretty cool quote and def there is a natural process. i will say that there is a certain level of crafting that takes place…i would almost call it a joining in of the energy so it does not take the writer out of it completely


    1. You are right, of course. The writing comes out of the energy of the writer and the energy can manifest in a myriad of ways. For me, sitting behind a desk trying to force the words is counterproductive. I get many of my opening lines from dreams and in the shower!


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