'They' say I have not read enough.
If I want to write poetry,
They say I should read
Cavafy and Armitage.
Ruth Padel’s “52 Ways to Read a Poem.”
Yes that will teach me how to write better.
- - -
Should I also retreat into a Writer’s Retreat?
Will the rolling hills and flurries of fog,
fawn over me,
in creative outbursts?
Bukowski, on the other hand instructs:
I shouldn’t write unless
it ‘bursts out of me’.
- - -
Words have burst forth in a panicked hurry
staining the sheets,
in monsoonal splendour.
I lie spent now,
mutilated by my latest offering.
Already a bystander.
In the after-throes of my affair,
I tentatively send them forth –
Exposing them to prying eyes –
a gavel’s stroke punctuating my dreams.
I quiver, breath-held
as your pronounce your judgement
with placid bored eyes of one who has read too much.
And in a voice jaded beyond redemption,
You bellow your answer
(or do you breathe a yellowed whisper?).
Plucking the petals off my art,
you desecrate it to a doodle
And hand me condolences
For having lost myself.