Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Happy National Bookmobile Day

I love the bookmobile: the ice cream man for nerds.

Yesterday afternoon (well into evening) my friend Elizabeth met for coffee and poetry. Neither of us has managed to write a poem a day, and Elizabeth devised a good reason why. During nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month,) where crazy people write 50,000 words during the month of November, one is working toward a large, unfinished product. Yet the container for that project is large. It’s 50,000 words, (or more) most of which are lousy words. In all of the nanos I have done, I delete tons of text.
Poetry, however, requires exact, specific words, and the containers for them are small. So they require focused attention to detail. Poems need to be written slowly. Even the drafts. Poems are deceptive. Because they are usually short, poems seem "easier" to write, yet a poem can take years to write.

I responded to a poet friend of mine’s Facebook posting about trying to write a poem a day. I have been writing lines of poetry, but not actual poems. Perhaps these lines will accumulate and become a poem,. Maybe not. But they rest like seeds in a packet, waiting to be planted in a more temperate climate.

So today’s exercise is: don’t try to write a poem today . Feel free to write lines that could become poems, but NOT make a poem.

Happy Writing.

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