What’s the first word you’re going to forget? The first word that’s going to slip through the sieve in your brain?
The name of your partner, child, grandson?
With me it was an item of food.
A breakfast food we eat once a week on Wednesday. I knew it began with ‘c’ and that it was a French-sounding word like ‘croutons’ but it wasn’t that.
I could have asked my partner but I didn’t want to embarrass myself.
I did not want to acknowledge that ‘the forgetting’ had begun.
Then after a week it came to me in a flash, like the click of a thumb. I wrote it down on a pad with a marker pen just in case but I needn’t have bothered.
Now I enjoy my croissants that little bit more.
Could you squeeze her
into a haiku? No, that would not do.
Her life was too sprawly.
It simply wouldn’t fit.
Something larger, more inclusive.
Perhaps a biopic.
I don’t know whether you noticed but when I write a poem I slam it down on the page still white –hot from the cauldron of creation. Only when it cools do I see its cracks and imperfections. This may take minutes, more often hours, sometimes days. One poem took me nine years to write. There’s still a few I’m working on from twenty years back.
Those of you who see the still molten post will be surprised when you see the reworked version solidifying into its present state. Yes, you should edit. The trick is not to edit out the primal energy which birthed the poem.
I saw it advertised in the local rag.
‘Bonsai Show’, it said.
It was a tiny notice. I had to squint to read the details.
The hall was rather tiny.
I squeezed through the entrance almost knocking my head
against several light fittings on my way in.
It looked like a huddle of hobbits around the bonsai which
were unusually tiny.
“They’re not fully grown yet,” a volunteer offered.
Like many of you, I felt like saying but bit my tongue.
The Club President gave a haiku-sized speech for which
we were all grateful.
I mingled for half an hour indulging in the small talk until
refreshments were served.
There were pies, pasties and muffins from the ovens of Lilliput.
“Would you like a short black?” the serving lady asked.
“Any chance of some wine ?” I said.
“Sorry,” she answered, “It’s in very short supply.”
I had had about enough of pint-sized jokes.
I couldn’t wait to get outside in the big, bold world.
I could go for a walk but I can’t be buggered.
I could check my Facebook status but I can’t be buggered.
I could cut back the bush near the letter box so the postie can chuff past more easily on his motor scooter.
But I can’t be buggered.
I could put more effort in getting my next manuscript together — the editor is interested — but I can’t be buggered doing that either.
I almost can’t be buggered writing this poem about not being buggered.
Would rather curl up in the sun out the back with a good crime novel and lose myself in the plot.
I was reading about Miss Jean Brodie
About her being in her prime
her ‘owning’ the stage
Of the classroom
With the forty girls sitting in rows
Looking and listening
& I thought
How much blogging is like this
How each of us
Performs on the platform of the page
Seeking to impress
to stand out
To make our ‘mark’ upon
The rows and rows of readers
& how one day
A fellow blogger
Will remember our performances
And memorialize us
As Muriel Spark did Miss Kay
“No rest for the innocent”, she sighs —
As she looks out the back door.
“Looks like he’s raping her again.
He’s as randy as Harvey Weinstein”.
“For fuck’s sake, they’re blackbirds,” I say.
.”How anthropomorphic can you get?
And anyway, all things being eventual.
The act might well be consensual.”