Before I came here, I never would have thought that I’d find myself getting interested in poetry, let alone writing some of my own. I’ve always respected writers and the things they do with words that I cannot, just as I know many respect artists for these same reasons. But I’ve never really had a chance to experience the power of poetry.
In an attempt to get out of the house one Sunday evening over a month ago, I attended an open mic hosted by Mic Check Poetry in BCS. Sitting in the audience with my knitting in hand (Yes, I took my knitting to an open mic at a bar…), I suddenly found myself with a hankering to get up and read something, anything. The next thing I knew I was nervously standing on the stage reading off a funny/sarcastic list of things I have noticed that are different here than back home. “Texas is…” went over alright, but it definitely was not one of my finer moments. However, it got me wanting more.
There’s a fiber art show I plan to enter in Corpus Christi, titled “Thread Sense“, that is asking for fiber or fiber related art that is accompanied by a story. This show got me to thinking more about my art and how my larger works really do lend themselves well to story telling and imagination. The adventures that the viewer takes when they look at my paintings is something I truly cherish.
So when I decided to attend another, what I thought was open mic, two weeks ago, I sat down and started writing for real. With the image of my work in front of me I started typing out words that described what I was seeing. Within thirty minutes I had this poem:
Howling Black Bark:
Traveling through darkness
Ominous and black
Beyond the night trees
Waiting to attack
Crunching the leaves on the way out
Dangling from the top
Over, under and within the cave
Holding til one final drop
Hitting the ground, mossy and gross
Spreading throughout the Earth
The cave opens up with one loud roar
As the ribbons begin to give birth
Illuminated orange and green
Keeping pace with the sky
Dancing like fire and rain
Ready to take off and fly
Seen by no one,
Yet Creeping so near
Open your eyes
And face the fear.
Poem in hand I drove off to Revolution that night intending to be reading at an open mic. It wasn’t until after I put my name on the list that I came to find out that it was actually a poetry slam (although I didn’t know there was a difference between the two until now) and that I had just signed up to compete. I could back out if I wanted, especially since I was the only virgin on the list and everyone else was an “official member”, but I sucked up the courage and decided to read. Surprisingly, it didn’t end all that bad. I still ended with the lowest score of the night, and was the only poet to use rhymes, but I am still happy that I was able to face my fears and just do it.
Since that night I have been wanting to write more. What I really need to do is go to one of the writing workshops they hold in Bryan, but I haven’t had the courage (or gas) to do so. Plus, I want to work this out on my own the best way I know how – practice. I wrote another one tonight, and I like this one even more than the first.
Mushroom Petal Bloom:
Ice Cream Stories
Through the haze
Beyond the hills
Clouded nights and
around the moon
Keeping time to
I think I’ll go to the open mic again this weekend, and maybe I’ll even read this poem. Although I am wondering if you need the image to understand the words. Either way, I’m hoping to keep writing more of these for both my paintings and my sculptures. Hopefully by the open house on November 8th the walls of my gallery will be filled with paintings AND words!
PS – sorry about the formatting, wordpress doesn’t like me tonight.