My Edits Are Painfully Slow So I Took a Poetry Break

Below are two poems I’ve been working on whenever I get sick of editing 350 pages of text.

Poet

I live on an inland sea
where daily
I hear the wheeze
and hack of herons,
long dactylic hexameters,
odd wracking convulsions,
sad tuneless songs
to lost sailors.
Like Odysseus –
a low down
drunk Cyrenian
who slopped
too many whiskeys,
inhaled too many
unfiltered cigarettes –
my pursuit is
beyond redemption.

I rope myself to a raft of pages
refusing to ballast my ears
against the muse’s song
calling from the same rocky knowing
that cast us all from paradise.

Saluting Aristippus for his belief in pleasure
I bend my back to the task –
unfurling poems,
turning them to luff
past the barrier reef of my skin.

***
My Strawberries Wild

Knee high wanton wilderness.
Seeded with rubies under foliage
like emerald umbrellas
pressing humidity hard into musk and loam
black with decay, the life giver.
What was relinquishes to what will be
the sweet fruition of possibility.
A strawberry forest cultivates wildness.
It is this chaos that gives a flavor
for life, for its ups and downs.
It is this juice that forces the drive
to over-reach, go beyond, burgeon.

The birds and I harvest together
each vying for our fair share.
But we are objective co-owners
of this manna. We cooperate,
co-habitate, celebrate our fortune.
The birds approve my constant hunger
as I husband each plant.
In return we are all blessed
with more and more offspring. And, too,
it’s me who tears out the tangle-foot quack grass
that thwarts each feathered farmer’s passage
on their journey to partake of forbidden fruit.

***

 

Now My Space Really Is Complete! It Has a Cushy Chair, a Dog & Her Bed, a Character Gallery & Most Important of All – a Plotting Wall!

Character & Plotting wall in my finished workspaceHere are a couple photos of the plotting wall in progress. All the visuals for composites of each major character are up where I can stare at them for inspiration. They’ll help keep my descriptions consistent, too. In addition, I’ve got a 7-foot strip of butcher paper tacked to the wall with a line that shows the way the plot climbs along its trajectory to the denouement then down into crisis in the last third of the book and finally up again into a peak moment before things settle down at the end. What I’ll do with the evolving outline is print it out, scene-by-scene, on small pieces of colored paper.  I’ll stick these up along the plot line visual where each event occurs within the novel. Then I can move the bits of paper around as I fiddle with the plot until it’s working the way I want it to.

Close-up of the character & Plotting Wall

 

 

My Writing Space Is Finished!

I finally have a room of my own again. It’s in the basement away from distractions and completely self-contained. I never need to come upstairs unless I WANT TO!

My newly remodeled work space. Lovely isn't it -- even without a chair, yet!

My newly remodeled work space. Lovely isn’t it — even without a chair, yet!

These blank walls will help me plot out my novels and move stuff around without losing track of time and date! I'll post photos as I begin to develop this handy tool!

These blank walls will help me plot out my novels and move stuff around without losing track of time and date! I’ll post photos as I begin to develop this handy tool!