jillypoet: mom trying to write

Each day I wish I had invented waterproof sticky notes (for shower inspiration) or pen-friendly diapers to get down all my quirky thoughts that I am sure are relevant and publishable. And so God (actually another writer-mommy) sent me The Blog.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Why do I write poetry? This was always the question that bugged me in college. Why should I bother writing about why I write, or why, for that matter, bother even thinking about why. I should just write! I can't really answer why I write, or why I love poetry. I just do.

I love words. Thimble, twinkle, clair de lune. Lute, Linus, silent, clanging. I love how words can paint a picture. Love how words that don't go together can be put next together and all of a sudden, someone says, Yes!

I like to think that since the wife-ly, kitchen goddess gene skipped a generation, I was blessed with the sugary thumb of a word chef. I can cook up a mean sestina. I'm known for my spicy sonnets in the coffee clatch circle. People beg for my famous free verse at cocktail parties. Someone stop me! I'm a poet without an apron.

Please, forgive me. It's late. I do have a poetic answer to the poetry question brewing (another good word) in the coffee pot of my mind, but until it's ready, here is a poem I posted way back in July when I was a lonely little blogger (and with the previous puns, is it any wonder?). Thanks for reading!

Scheherazade, Pen in Hand

I am following the thread of a poem
finding my way
between the folds of life’s cloth.
Sometimes sliding easily in
and out of silk,
capturing happy mothering moments,
precious three-year-old chatter
of handy dandy parking spots,
when we park up close,
cats as best friends,
the golden glow of slumber.

Other times I am jabbing a dull needle
through deep dark denim,
bending my pen around
hidden words,
angry statues,
frozen strands of stilted conversations,
the wide wale corduroy of being man and wife.

Always I am following that thread,
unspooling in long winding lines,
wrapping round corners,
Some days sewing cowboys
in my favorite color scheme
with golden hair and midnight hats.
Some days stitching
dark-haired, Indian-eyed baristas
into the back pocket of my sewing kit
as they stroke their goatees,
ask large or small, whole or skim.

I collect words in thimbles,
use pinking shears on newspapers, pump
my trundle in rhyme, sew closed
the holes in my socks
with letters
cut from magazines.
I will not stop until I am Scheherazade.


Anonymous Dana said...

I love words. Thimble, twinkle, clair de lune. Lute, Linus, silent, clanging. I love how words can paint a picture. Love how words that don't go together can be put next together and all of a sudden, someone says, Yes!

I think that's a pretty good answer, actually. Mind if I use that quote sometime on Poetry Thursday?

1:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just had to read this. And the last line sums up why. My sisters actual middle name is Scheherazade. It must have been a bummer not knowing how to spell it until like 5th grade (and I doubt she knows now at 25 yrs.) Wonderful choice of words.

7:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"collect words in thimbles,
use pinking shears on newspapers,"

this is very vivid and telling. I like also the knotting and un knotting. The small and precise image of poetry.

well done!!

10:10 AM  
Blogger pepektheassassin said...

Hey! That's what I thought, too, about putting unlike words together, and waiting to see what happens: an explosion, a whistle, a sigh....Applause!

12:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How blessed we are to have so many lovely words to express ourselves- thimble is epsecially nice! The images it conveys...
Your poem was wonderful- full of all those lovely words!

12:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love your puns - and your why you write explanation. Absolutely delicious!

3:18 PM  
Anonymous Rethabile said...

It's good to say why you love poetry. it's even better when you show us.

3:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your ability to weave poetry out of the smallest of everyday actions just delights me week after week. I'm so glad you re-posted this poem; I would have hate to have missed it.

4:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lyrical, lovely poem. Your images flow together so well; they are sewn as neatly and smoothly as you describe.

thanks for pulling me out of my drug-induced fog for a minute...:)

4:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a great post. I love words too and putting them together. I love the cooking analogy.

8:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I simply loved the way your poetry flowed. It stays in mind.

saluting the potic words.
why I love Poetry.

11:51 PM  

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