Remote Session

I sat there
phone to my ear
watching someone elses screen –
Software Loading.
Nobody spoke
We waited in awkward silence
not knowing if the other
was busy doing something else
or about to speak.
Neither – but we stared at the screen,
The green bar slowly edging
closer to 100 percent.

Poetry Revision

Poetry, like any written work, needs revision. I suppose there might have been a handful of times when inspiration for a short poem hits and what comes out the first time is good enough. But most times there’s a good bit of thinking, speaking and writing that goes on after the initial words are put to paper.

When I say good enough I mean I’m happy with the way it sounds and I feel I’ve gotten my message across. In other words, good enough is an incredibly subjective measure of a poem’s completion.

Notice that I didn’t say a poem is good enough if half the people who proofread it say it’s OK. No, good enough comes before any eyes but mine have beheld the work. And that makes it incredibly dangerous. Because whether I think my message has been put across or not or whether it sounds good, no one else may see it that way.

That’s why the initial words of a poem’s first draft usually shouldn’t be published. It’s tempting (and I do it more than I should) to just put them out there quickly and see what happens. But that usually results in reading them later and cringing when you realize you let other humans read that slop.

Those initial words are not the poem; not really anyway. Instead, they’re the idea, the inkling of a theme or the exploration of a subject. Usually, when I think I’ve got something good, I’ll walk away from it for a week or more. I come back to it later with fresh eyes and see that it wasn’t very good in the first place. It’s then that the poem begins to be written.

A Two Minute Poem

I was bored the other day and was trying to get myself to do something; anything! I decided to give myself two minutes to write a poem. It didn’t matter how short or unrefined it was (good thing). It was only important that I wrote something. 

What I came up with probably should have only taken one minute. It’s short, circular and has no deep meaning. But it felt good to accomplish something anyway. 

I have two minutes

To call the muse

And have her show me verse.

So any lines 

I here put down

Must naturally be terse.