At readwritepoem this week we were invited to set poetry goals for 2009. Frankly, it's too hot here, and I am still on holiday. I do have vaguely formed goals and plans, which I may make more concrete in the coming weeks - establish some sort of regular writing habit, for a start. I hesitate to put a number to the quantity of planned poems. As I put it in a comment on Dana's blog, I plan to love my poems more this year. That is, not to think they are wonderful and need no improvement, but to love them the way I would my children, which is to pay them attention, spend time with them, and not expect them to behave like adults when they are still two year olds, or teenagers. To let them develop in their own way.
(There will also be a book of poems produced this year by my small poetry group. We have the grant money so we are obliged to do it, no excuses. I'll get a quarter of the space - about twelve to fifteen poems, which I can easily fill from already existing work, if necessary).
I've been thinking about these things, and clearing my hugely overgrown garden now that I have time free from work (until yesterday and today when the temperature soared just too much), and then the Wordle at readwritepoem this week offered up some words which seemed to fit with these thoughts and with something I had written in my notebook the other day.
So, here is a very rough draft, using the words "bombardment", "signature", "stucco", "crimson" and "geranium".
After Christmas all the days
slide off the calendar and lie
in a tumbled heap on the floor
with the towels and jandals.
The sun beats down and the nor’wester
brings a constant aerial bombardment
of pollen. We eat Groundhog Day meals
of lettuce salad and leftover ham.
The days stretch endless – easy to plan
a triumphant year, easy to think
there’s all the time in the world
to write brilliant poems. In the garden
I’m clearing swathes of long grass.
A vague buzzing grows louder
when I move the blue barrel. All the bees
are heading for that corner,
writing their signatures in long looping flight
confused perhaps by an absence of blue.
They make their way to the grille
in the foundations, lurch their fat
fuzzy bodies over the cross bar
and disappear into the basement.
I am dizzied by bright days and bright
words. White stucco, blue rain barrel,
crimson geranium – searching for entry
into the dark and cavernous mystery
of the poem.