Creativity is a Terrible Thing

010-elijah-chariot

Creativity is a terrible thing,

He says,

When it gets you in its clutches.

It won’t let you sleep, rest.

It jerks you awake,

Kicks you out of bed,

And before you know it

You’re at the keyboard

At 3 a.m.

Belting out a poem

Belting through the bleariness

To get it down

Then head back to bed

Where it starts again

The brain twitch, the jerk,

The plummet into wakefulness.

You don’t even make a living out of it

But it’s the way you’re living

The gift, equal curse

But when that sweet chariot swoops you up,

Oh the rush, the voltage,

That gift

You’d trade your grandmother for it

Were she still around.

Will It Be Painless?

skeleton-end-sign-sketched

 

Is it any good pleading? Thompson says.

For your life? Not really.

But you can’t just toss me aside like a dog carcass, not after all I’ve done for you.

You were more than serviceable, W admits. But you’ve served your purpose. You can’t argue with me.

Will it be painless?

Yes.

Well, get it over with then.

One minute, W says.

He reaches into his satchel and pulls out his laptop.

Finish your drink, W says. Out with the old and in with the new, he smiles, keyboarding fiercely.

And with that, Thompson is gone.

 

Le Coq

6982996-cock-chanticleer-rooster-cartoon-illustration

 

It wasn’t Miro’s colourful coq

Nor Chaucer’s Chanticleer

Nor the one that crowed three times when Peter

Denied Jesus.

 

It was just a garden variety rooster

That waddled onto the page

When my back was turned

& scrabbled between the lines

 

Before I sent him on his way

feathers all ruffled

Into a sunset red

as a coxcomb.

Butterflies of my Mind

small butterly

 

I was out among the fields, here one more time

Vigorously out hunting the butterflies of my mind

All the poems, the stories that had given me the slip

And would it seem once more; I had to be quick.

All the bright, beautiful things just beyond my net

Any moment now I’ll snare one; damn! Not just yet

I’m Good at Last Lines

writer

 

I’m good at last lines. I really am.

The rest of my poems are crap but my last lines

Are really something.

I’m thinking of bringing out a book called ‘My Fifty Best Last Lines’.

The trouble is it’d be like bringing out a book of punch lines without the jokes.

‘By gum, I wish I could do that’ or ‘It’s okay for you two. I have to walk out by myself’ fall a bit flat without the jokes attached.

I suppose I could make the rest of the poems as good as the last lines but it’s a pretty big ask.

Now I can’t even get a good last line to this poem.

Early Walk

music

 

On my early walk

I passed a group of musicians

Under the bridge

 

It sounded like

They were tuning their instruments

In preparation

 

For a concert

Perhaps a twilight one on the bank

The notes

 

Bouncing off

each other —Boing boing — like hollow

rubber balls

 

banjo frogs

amongst the rocks and reeds already

drawing a crowd