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To Catch a Word . . .

I have written poetry for all of my adult life. Some of it is terrible. Some of it has been good enough to earn me entry into juried chapbooks and two public readings. It comes in spurts, out of the air, a sudden thought that expands into several more.

I like to play with words, although it does not come easily to me. Finding the right word, the one with the most impact, can be incredibly frustrating at times. When it appears, it’s as if I’ve dug up a gold coin. I’ll hold it, admire it, then lay it to the page. If it works in the verse, I’m ecstatic, but I may have to set it aside for another time. If you were paying attention, you’ll realize I just used two internal rhymes in that last sentence! Ha!

The poem below is one that was written when the muse was kind and it flowed from an idea onto the page.


Cluttering shelves, filling drawers, collecting dust.

I cannot part with them.

They sleep where they lie, all akimbo.

I should put them in a keepsake box,

so many drops in an ocean of years,

birthdays, anniversaries, mother’s days.

Some still bring tears.

I waken them from time to time,

look at the cover, the note inside.

They reflect the sender more than me,

more than the occasion.

They are chapters in a book, read in

frames and slipping images.

I hold them as jewels,

remembering how it felt

to be remembered.

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