Saturday, March 29, 2008

April: Dolittle Plans

Image via answer

I more than accomplished my goal of 5 poems for March. I wrote Alejandra, Obama in the Tulips, World go marching by, Blogger in the World Wide Web, Reading the Sartorialist, Poet's Boat, Robber's Beat, Always Nearly, and Put on the Music. But I haven't written anything for the last week, and am already concerned about April, that blank spring month ahead of me.

I've never found a means to control poetic output. For me, a poem hinges on random images and rhythms that connect in unexpected ways with ideas that occupy me. It's surprising connections that give poetry punch. But I can't seem to nail down a reliable process to generate these connections.

I guess it's a bit like finding love, or the lucky break. You can't really expectantly go out looking or sit around waiting. Instead you need to focus on all those backstage elements of life and trust that things will fall into place. So, setting up the stage for April:

1) Read a lot, specifically The Art of Poetry: How to Read a Poem
2) Go to a couple poetry readings (Sarah Lawrence College Poetry Festival)
3) Do a lot of things, go to a lot of new places, and notice much (Take Polynesia the Parrot's advise "Be a good noticer"--The Voyages of Dr. Dolittle (Signet Classics)).
4) Work hard in other fields.
5) Walk a lot.
6) Sleep a lot.
7) Daydream a lot.

In other words, to write more poetry all I need to do is do a lot more and do a lot less.

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