Archive for October, 2015

This is some advice I’ve received about writing poetry. I’m just relaying it:

  1. Concrete images trump metaphorical or abstract concepts. “Red grit bricks” trump “the voice of God,” “calloused knuckles” is better than “soul.” No one knows what a soul looks like. Concrete images are usually examined under the lens of metaphor anyway.
  2. It takes years to cultivate your voice. Try new and different things. Try traditional forms. Experiment with perspective and tone. Stay on things for a while. Try writing lists for a month, then try sonnets, and then try love poems.
  3. Write early in the day, or late at night. What you think is great in a moment may turn out to be crap later. Come back hours later and look at what you’ve written. Keep what you like. Cut what you don’t like. Don’t just try to change it. Get rid of it.
  4. Your heart is the center of your poetry. Get in touch with that, and let it pour out. You have time to rein it in later.

Happy writing. 🙂

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I’m not sure if I’m isolating myself

in my shut mouth, my closed door,

by the groups I hang out with,

in my flannel shirts, in rehearsals.

I keep thinking how nice it would be

for two arms to wrap around my waist,

pull me close to a warm chest,

a beating heart.

If I open my door,

there’s no guarantee I’ll open my mouth.