Interstitial Moment:

I have been part of a November fund raising project called 30 Poems for 30 Days, meaning that friends and acquaintances and poetry lovers have pledged a certain amount per poem to receive copies each day of a new poem I have written.

Which also means–no surprise!–that I have been writing a poem a day since November 1.

Now what this boils down to are a lot of good ideas and some good lines and maybe one or two good (not necessarily great) poems. But the act of sitting down each day to write a poem is both constricting (fear factor, can I actually pull off the magic trick?) and liberating (how do I know what I think till I see what I say?).

Sometimes the day dictates what I write about: going to FaerieCon, walking in New York City, Thanksgiving. Sometimes my own emotions do. But however I get to that poem, one thing is clear, writing poetry is something that needs to be practiced, a muscle that needs exercising. Ever single day.

And any poem written today will eventually have to be rewritten many times more. But that is a for the future. Right now I have my eye on the November 30 prize and how much money I am raising for the Center for New Americans.

And my head into tomorrow’s poem. Which may be about Leftovers, since this is the day after Thanksgiving.

Here are two of the poems:

Nov 8:

Annual Children’s Illustration Show

Michelson’s Gallery 2010

I envy artists the tools of their trade,

so full of color, bristle, tooth.

They live through their eyes.

A piece of white paper is saturated with life:

each line telling a story.

An arc for them, like a tree limb, carries weight.

They place a dot on the page;

it becomes an eye, falling rain,

the buttress of a tiny bridge,

the start of a new life.

Perspective bends.

A spot of red signifies

dusk, dawn, a riding hood,

trillium by a darkling river,

the bursting of a vein.

All I have is words.

Some day that may be enough.

Nov 25:

Thanksgiving, Three Prayers

1.

How like us to load both fridges,

yours where the food has been cooked,

mine just over the brow of the hill.

The turkey remains at your house,

trussed, stuffed, ready for its big moment.

Pumpkin brulees wait in seductive ramikins

like women in white negligees.

I have the side dishes in my cooler,

plainer but no less filling.

These two refrigerators hold a lifeline between us.

Today we shuffle the food from house to house.

I save my thanks for the sun.

2.

Friends come to eat here,

your door open to pilgrims,

Charity’s daughter.

3.

We groan after eating, that old story.

Swear never to eat again, that old lie.

Remind ourselves to give thanks

that are never given, that old prayer.

Just happy to be together,

that old tale.

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