Poetry Is Not For Rushing – Part Two (on writing poetry)

I have written two poems.
Thank you gods. 🙂
 
The first one, I wrote while making about three litres of apple butter using apples from a friend’s tree. The second I wrote part-way In The Moment while watching the sun go down from Champlain Lookout, and the rest of the way once I was home, two days later, and trying to transcribe my own memory.
 
I’ve said this before, but poetry is not for rushing. Not when you read it, and not when you write it, either.
 
As someone who frequently composes poetry on short notice, pieces bursting forth inside of minutes, not hours, this has come as something of a surprise.
 
Writing poetry – perhaps this won’t be much of a shock to many of you – requires such a completely different mind-set from writing prose. Even lyrical, thick-descriptive, fictional prose.
At least it does for me.
It’s like my background-noise brain has to constantly be told “Stop. Don’t ramble. Focus. What’s real. What does that cloud look like. No. Not what does the shape of that cloud make you think of. What does that cloud look like See what’s there. See what’s real. Talk about what’s real.”
 
It’s not that you can’t write poetry quickly, or that you can’t write poetry on a deadline, or that you can’t write poetry in a white-hot burst of inspirational heat. It’s that you can’t write poetry distracted.
 
Maybe that’s why poetry comes best when (a) I’m super-focused, but also (b) when I stop letting myself follow every little thought that comes along.
Poetry composition as meditation.
Or something.
 
Anyone else find this to be the case?
 
 
Cheers,
A.

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1 Comment

Filed under poetry, writing

One response to “Poetry Is Not For Rushing – Part Two (on writing poetry)

  1. Pingback: A New Chapter of My LIfe Blossomed | terry1954

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