I used to take long walks in the woods and a poem would pop into my head effortlessly. The flow of my steps would jog something in my brain and images and ideas would come to me almost like magic. Lately, my life has been filled up with mundane things: weddings, newborn babies, elderly relatives going into assisted living, trying to exercise more and eat less – you know – Life!
However, I know when I’m away from writing too long, my spirit crumples and my imagination dulls. So earlier this summer, I was wandering the aisles of my favorite discount store. I came across the book counter, which was stacked neatly with volumes of inspirational books: try a craft, learn to make beer, knit a sweater, arrange flowers, lose weight in 10 day diets, sudoku, word searches… And there in a neat blue stack was Write the Poem. I picked it up and immediately thought, “This is just what I need: some structure! Usually, with my art and poetry, I like to dabble and play, but my recent drought of artistic endeavors forced me into drastic measures. (Ah the rhyme and rhythm!)
Now seriously, I bought this little book thinking I would try to write poems with words supplied by someone else. It was a new experience for me, and I was up for the challenge. I was doubtful that anything would come of it, but the first poem I wrote, I actually liked. Here it is:
Tide rises with the new moon:
Laces the sand in briny bubbles,
Crashes in, then recedes.
I wait out in the depths,
Keep my head above the surface,
Tread the dark waters,
Feel the push and pull of the ever-undulating current.
New moon rises,
Casts a luminous path
Across the surface of the ocean,
Leading the way.
I follow and float,
Carried by her salty power.
I want to fill this little book up with my poems over the next 12 months. I think it will give me the structure I need and give my imagination a kick-start. I am looking forward to having a book filled with my poems, poems I can rewrite and re-imagine. It is amazing that the same words can become so many different poems. It would be fun to get a group together and share poems written using the same words. I challenge everyone to give it a try!
The Ocean: billows, deep, brine, offing, wave, flux tide current