Initially I was anxious after reading Carolee’s prompt, rubbernecking. I had a few subjects in mind, but I blew off trying to write for a week. Then I saw entries posted and the anxiety rose especially when I tried to put notes to paper, and my mind refused to settle. I was struggling primarily because I kept vacillating between trying to make something up or to get real and draw from my life. The latter was a superior well but when I tried to write drafts, I couldn’t contain the writing to poetry. My mind wanted prose. Emotionally, prose was easier to write and tougher. Tougher because that meant more space to examine shyte I really didn’t want to look at too closely, but not to look closely would mean a piss poor draft. Then there was the fear of failing to write these life experiences well. These were pretty intimate episodes in my life, and the idea of failing to write them well filled me with doubt and hesitation.
Finally after starting and stopping, I was able to commit to a particular event. Then I zeroed in on a particular image and line that had been in my unconscious for years; then came the draft. Once I had the line and image, devices came easily to me. Can’t explain it but I knew what devices I’d use. Then came the tinkering: deliberately considering my word choices, line length, tone and impact. I am grateful for the draft I ultimately posted. Don’t know when or if I’ll revise (I’m a huge advocate for revision. Nut about it, actually. By the way January, I read your article about revision and I was shouting, “Yes” at the screen) . What I know is that I wrote what I know. I trusted my gut. I used what my mentor,professor taught me, and that makes me feel good. Some of the comments I received validated that there is some benefit to my reading and my obsession with buying poetry collections and reference texts on writing poetry.
All and all, I’m stoked. I’m no Rita Dove, but I’m feeling good about me and that’s way cool.