I've Been Doingit Wrong?
All this time, I have been doing it wrong.
I enjoy reading good books by good writers –
it's sort of like attending a class in writing,
with the author of that particular book teaching the class.
I get some fantastic thoughts and knowledge
and a marvelous education,
by watching the wave and flow of the words and sentences
that form across the pages, as they wend their ways into my mind....
But today I learned that I have been doing it wrong.
And apparently very much so.
Today I learned that, for a poet,
much time is expected to be spent,
and great thought is to be required,
just for one line.
In fact, just this short bit that I have written here so far –
that should have taken days to gather and set down here.
That is according to one of the best-known of all writers,
who is also a favorite of mine.
I have many favorites, and when I am allowed to wander
in a bookstore or a library,
I am much like the child with a dime or a quarter to spend,
let loose in a candy shop.
So many pretties, so much to decide...
however, my dime is my mind, and my hunger is not for sweets,
although sweet are the words and letters and sentences, indeed....
But when I am able, and I put together some stray letters
and make them into words and put them one after the other in lines....
I am not doing it in the correct way.
So I am to believe, at any rate.
For the one who says this is famous and a most successful writer of prose,
and a bit of poetry as well,
and unless the writer sweats blood,
then it cannot be of any value or worth at all.
The writer must write, then collapse as worn or beaten to exhaustion –
and then still only be near, not at, the end of it.
Then some great thing must
transpire, a singing of voices from the clouds, perhaps,
or a glowing orb, blinding with light,
from whence comes the final lines or words,
and the writer takes these thoughts and puts them to the ending
of what was being done,
and declares it to be finished,
and smiles in pride and grief that it is finally over.
So, I have been doing it all wrong.
But I like doing it my way.
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Copyright©2017-1999 by Rebecca R. Hammack
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