‘On the whole, I think poems don’t crawl out of dreams. They are knocked out of rocks.
Children write poetry without pain or dreams of course’ she said. ‘Sometimes poem after poem pours out– lovely poems. Before you’re say ten, that is. You will remember.’ p175
There’s something about childhood
that just seems so carefree and easy.
Running, skipping, jumping, laughing,
swinging, playing, swimming and screaming with glee.
All those ing words that fall away as you get older:
at which point there is less moving,
leaving more time to sit and think.
The beauty of being a child
is that they are so present and in the moment.
in a myriad of ways
that make my grownup self long for the past.
But it doesn’t last.
Children grow and change
and leave their poetry writing behind,
giving truth to Picasso’s words–
‘Every child is an artist.
The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.’
At some point certain pursuits become childish.
Passions become discarded
in favor of other interests or necessities,
and life gets in the way.
Most teens can’t be bothered with drawing or writing just for fun.
They are busy just simply “be”ing.
Worried about grades and school;
friends, peers, and life after school.
The thought of joining the real world
can be daunting, exciting or both.
For some it seems like a black abyss,
a cavernous hole that will swallow them up.
I guess at that age it was hard
to fathom a life beyond the one I was leading.
College, marriage, jobs…
they all seemed light years from my existence.
And yet here I am,
getting ready to launch
my son off into the world.
It doesn’t seem possible.
But today we got word
that someone we know
had taken his own life.
Devastated doesn’t begin to describe
That boy will never grow older,
never experience life beyond school…
We will never see
the man we knew he was meant to be.
His sister will grow and change
and maybe marry
and have children of her own.
She will create a life
around a brother-sized hole.
I’ve come to realize
that damming up the words
damns us to a life
We have to let them flow–
out of us, past us,
to a place beyond our reach.
Even if it is difficult,
even if our ideas don’t come crawling out of our dreams.
We must excavate them from our souls
and offer them up to those in need.
And so we write to comfort others.
And so we write to combat loneliness.
And so we write to create new worlds.
And so we must write.