Little things

Here’s a newly published small something now free to read at Trouvaille Review. I wrote this poem after a walk in the rain a couple of years ago. I find it’s little things and quiet moments that can lead to writing about bigger themes, sometimes tangentially, sometimes smack bang on. These small things can magnify issues, or provide a way to see things differently, like looking through water and finding curves where straight lines were, as reality is displaced through refraction. Or these small wonders reflect themes and issues back to you, and everything is turned around. I suppose what I’m trying to describe is how a leaf on the ground can spark notions of vulnerability and the passage of time.

The trick, if there is a trick to this writing malarkey, is to notice the material world: that leaf, this pebble, that raindrop, and then let yourself feel and remember things in response and notice those feelings and memories. The second part of the trick is to translate the mess of feelings, memories, and images into words, and finally, the last bit of the trick is to massage the shape of these words into a poem.

Told ya it was simple.

So much of our lives we are told to separate ourselves into pieces. We put on the game face for this task, quell unease to focus on facts for this role, put aside misgivings to get things done here, be rational there, overrule our perspective in this case, and quiet our imaginations in other cases. Then we are told to judge our emotions as good and bad and suppress the apparently bad ones. After all of this we wonder why so many are tired, uninspired, and blocked creatively. I think what I’m proposing is creative expression takes a whole self (an integrated self), and that could feel odd in this world where we have different (partial) selves for different roles. This is a theory in progress, so who knows? I’m not saying you need to openly weep over the water cooler at work as you observe the interplay of light through office block windows, but would it be so bad if you did? I can’t say, I never done that. But now we can all take a moment and feel something in response, and, if that leads to memories, images, ideas that can be translated into words, then perhaps a poem might emerge. You never know, but no pressure.

Steady as she goes – the 2022 writing update

Rejections: 82
Pending: 88
Acceptances by publisher: 14
Acceptances by work: 17
Published: 12

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