Friday, April 02, 2010

there she is

so, i had a friend, my best friend, actually, who wanted me to write about her. has been asking for years for me to write about her. and i never really have. i don't know why. she's turned up in poems here and there. she's had plenty of quotes here and there. but none have been about her.

wednesday was wild, and i knew it was a poem.

i'm having these strange, more than ever present poetry moments. before things used to go in the cooker and come out who knows when and where. sometimes, i could see the crockpot being loaded with visuals, words. but never knew the poem before it was.

oddly, and yes, i know, i'm odd, that is changing.

i think because i'm more aware of the process now. like jumping in my car isn't the magic it was when i was a teenager, because i know i have to keep up with the oil, rotate the tires, fill the tank, replace the wipers. there is work involved.

writing has, for me, been largely unconscious. not void of consciousness mind you, but it has come from some unexplored country in my soul. i never really understood it, and at the time, i don't know that i was ready to deal with it. it wasn't important then to know what made me write and why.

i guess that is the good thing about this mfa program, it's making me consciously aware of processes i have become accustomed to. when i'm explaining to a table full of poets how it works for me, then reiterating that process to a mentor, these things translate to my conscious mind. my god, how could they not. how could i form words if not with some conscious awareness.

i so get it.

so, in my life these days, i walk through the motions. i make the perfect foam for a cappucino (work is very uninspiring poetically, except for me to make it and get the hell out of there), and move through my days. work involves quotidian mysteries like housework used to. i've lost the sanctity of it, but i'm trying to remain present to the dailyness of it. to having a job. for now, that is what matters.

but then, when i get off work, i snatch the ticket from my window (parking, what a pain in the ass), and head off to see my girl. diversions aside, i had bought a pair of shoes, two lefts, which i find kind of classic, and finally make it up there.

even paying a toll to get up there faster, that's how fast i wanted to be there. but i tried with every ounce of my being not to rip the shoe salesperson's head off, it was not their fault the shoes were mixed up.
be kind,
sometimes i tell myself this. more often than not, i need to hear it.

and we're finally installed at the restaurant. this, after i've written a poem on demand. very few people can demand of me this way,

don't center justify.

and she laughs.
center justify it.


i didn't sign up for this!
i start reapplying my hi-tops, and heading out the door,
and caps! my god.

she made me rhyme, i'll later say. it's curiously everything i'm not that she wanted. but whatever, i did it. we make it to the restaurant.

i'm glad you're back.


i know she means the past month when i've been anything but myself.

i had to go through it. it was tough.


i know. i saw it.


yes, but i had to see it.

there are so many times she tells me the whatfor, and i can hear it over and over again, but i can't reconcile it until i say it, articulte it, utter the words. she's usually right. and i don't let that annoy me, i am good at ignoring reason.

but we sat there, and i saw her so clearly. i left knowing i would write it down. and i did.

it's not easy for me to just write about someone. i have to see them. know them. feel that compulsion. live whatever it is i'm trying to capture. that is part and parcel of the dilemma.

and now, i learn to separate art from life. that is my task.

i don't know that my subjects will change. i will still write about people i love. but, i have to understand the required maintenance of my process. which i do. and i knew, long before i went off on my last tangent, what it would require of me. and it did.

i'm feeling more myself again, centered, grounded, all that is. my energy is still whacked, but it will right itself. i'm sure of it.

and in the meantime, i'll have some fun.

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