No Secret

I wrote this poem for the Daily Press Weekly Writing Challenge
and because April is National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo).

bubble shot

There’s no secret to poetry.
It can’t be forced out like toothpaste from a tube.

That just makes a mess.

You have to coax it sometimes,
Word by hesitant word,

Entice it
With promises

Caress it
Until it relaxes and opens and comes of its own.

When it blooms and hovering bees taste the nectar

When it ripens and its full aroma floods

When you feel the weight in your hand, on the air

That’s when you know it has burst forth of its own accord,
Willingly, eagerly, uncontained

And it’s no longer about you
Or the effort,
Or the desire.

Your control is an illusion. The words are eternal, and they’re not yours.

You can borrow them for a while,

Roll them around in your mouth and spit them out,

Teach them to dance your way,

Dress them up or dirty them,

But they’re not yours.

In the end, you set them free

To soar again.

photo credit rhett maxwell

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Aging like a fine wine. ;-)

16 thoughts on “No Secret”

  1. So, the secret is you cannot force poetry; you cannot ‘own’ the words. You must let them come to you by whatever means necessary. Let them float, ebb and flow, blossom and fruit, and, in my case, ‘die’. I like it. I will go with that. I especially like the idea of dressing up words or dirtying them. Exactly. I like it. You are a poet. Grandma would be proud.

  2. Interesting. I disagree, but interesting. Language is a malleable, evolutionary thing to me and entirely humanity’s creation. It’s for us to manipulate and forge into the things we desire and to change it’s meaning and use as we see fit.

    1. Thanks for weighing in, Rory. I see your point, too.
      Reminded me of this:
      ‘When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.’
      ‘The question is,’ said Alice, ‘whether you can make words mean so many different things.’
      ‘The question is,’ said Humpty Dumpty, ‘which is to be master — that’s all.’
      Humpty was a pretty smart fella.

  3. Thank you, Kira for the RCC welcome and the kind words. Writing has always felt like a gift to me, and when words arrive, I don’t question them. I can always tell when I revisit my pieces whether it was a struggle or a gift.

    1. Wow, thank you! I appreciate the recognition!
      (If I can just figure out how to get the award picture on a post…is it as simple as a right-click and copy?) 😉

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