Friday, December 30, 2011

W asked for a poem for the holidays

& so I made a zine called "Pass the Poetry, Please" that is based on George Ella Lyon's "Where I'm From" poem. It invites readers to write their own version and then pass it on. I'm thinking of giving other friends copies. I'd love to make more to sell, but that would be a copyright issue, so maybe I could make up my own poem to serve as model. (I would have to be a better poet first.)

Anyway, I'm still on my first draft of my own version of this poem. It's really long compared to my usual work. It's 42 lines, divided into stanzas of three lines each. (I am writing more and more with this form; I wonder why?) It feels like a mini-autobiography, though of course there are ellipses.

List poems are about generating material, and then picking through them for details and images that could lead somewhere unexpected. The ending surprised me, but it's not quite polished enough. I'm giving it to W in two days, so we'll see what I end up with. (He could get draft 2 or 3, and then I'll revise it some more...) This is the kind of poem you can write again and again and come up with a completely different tone depending on your current internal weather.

The year's almost done. A fitting way to end it, perhaps.

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