Si metrum non habet, non est poema.

NPM-2005-Black April is National Poetry Month. If my feed subscription works, I’ll receive a poem every day this month.

More importantly, I’m going to take this opportunity to pretend that I’m going to write a poem every day for thirty days.

I have discovered, through trial and error, that I am not really a poet. Like most reasonably okay writers, I am capable of writing a poem… but “poet” I am not. Another thing that I’m not, really, is one of these people who is very good at doing something daily. So this should be – well, “interesting” is probably the wrong word.

Oh come on. Don’t give me that. I know perfectly well that you could care less about poetry – that the moment I start posting daily poems will be the day when you stop reading. 🙂

It’s okay. I don’t mind.

Regardless: each day (hypothetically) for the next thirty days (with any luck) I will write and post a very sketchy, drafty, inconsequential little bit of poetry. I am sure that there will be days when inspiration cowers under the bed, at which point I will likely resort to haiku, limerick, and doggerel if only to fill the time. You can’t say you haven’t been warned. Oh, and posting my weekends’ worth of poetry on Monday is fair game; I often “fast from the internet,” to steal a phrase I read the other day, on the weekends.

None of this poetry is going to be any good. Nonetheless, I hope you’ll occasionally be moved to comment, even if that comment is “man, that really sucked out loud” or “uhm, did you really mean to leave the second N out of ‘indignant’?” After all, I can’t be expected to grow as a non-poet if I don’t engage in any workshopping. Which is, of course, another way of saying that I hope you’ll think about celebrating National Poetry Month with me. If a poem a day sounds like too much, why not a poem a week? Poems every Tuesday and Thursday, maybe?

And if I don’t care if you hate me for posting poetry, then I’m obviously also not going to care if you think you’re a good writer or a good poet. The fact remains that if you keep a blog, you’re a writer. (Whoa!) Plus, you have to keep in mind my general philosophy of poetry:

  1. Poetry is intended to be read aloud, and is more akin to music than to literature.
  2. Writing poetry can be a clinical exercise, or it can be more like therapy or prayer, or it can be a letter to oneself – all depending on how you write, and for whom. It can either suck, or feel awesome. Your choice!
  3. A poem only becomes good or bad when you start taking it seriously; if you’re just writing for the fun of it, the poem isn’t qualifiable. Writing poetry for the sake of writing it is always a positive thing, no matter what the end result looks like.
  4. The quote I’ve chosen for today’s post title is untrue.

Will you do it? Write a poem or thirty this month? Let me know if you’re thinking about it, and I’ll make certain to stop by with my pompoms to cheer you on.

And yes, this is utterly insane. As if I didn’t have enough to do with my time. But it’s good to focus a little bit, to do a little bit of mental yoga from time to time. I suspect that whatever time I “waste” on this exercise will help me perform my other tasks…

Drafty Poem #1

She lays red flowers on the altar
and lights a candle for the women
who carried her there:
the women who went before
and who will come after,
the woman she once thought she was,
and the one now, wax melting over her fist.

source image found:

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