Saturday, January 07, 2006

Thoughts on Poetry as promised...


One of my favorite websites for sending e-cards is www.spiritscents.com. Their cards have a Native American theme and are just beautiful. I copied and pasted the wolf mates at left from their site so need to thank them before continuing this blog. In addition to e-cards they sell scented oils and so many wonderful products you'll just have to check them out for yourself.

I'm working on a book of poetry titled The Wolves I Feed, taken from a Cheyenne Parable. In that parable, a Cheyenne elder explains to his grandchildren that two wolves are fighting for dominance inside them. One wolf is cruel, greedy, angry, unkind, vicious; the other is compassionate, peaceful, forgiving, loving, generous. The children ask, "Which wolf will win, Grandfather?" His reply: "The wolf I feed." On occasion, I've been known to feed the wrong wolf. My poetry reflects that. The wounds left by an abusive, alcoholic father run deep. The awful lingering death suffered by my mother from cancer almost killed me. Those rages and sorrows live in my poetry. I've also been blessed with love and friendship, an appreciation for life and Nature, and often reap the good karma I've sown. So I have a whole family of wolves to write about.

Poetry is a very personal thing. Each poet has a unique internal rhythm that lives in each word and line. As a reviewer I'm privileged to read the work of a variety of poets. I've written and appreciated poetry for as long as I can remember. Mom gave me a Big Chief tablet when I was five and told me to write her a poem. Like all good mothers, she knew my strengths and needs. The years between age 3 and 5 had transformed me from a sunny-natured, pretty, vivacious child to a fat, clumsy dullard. She knew that pretty child still lived inside me somewhere and hoped to bring her back with words.

Through prose and poetry, I've tried to resurrect that beauty ever since. One critic said of my prose in The Alley of Wishes, "Her poetic words flow seamlessly, creating a story of incredible depth." That line meant worlds to me because my mother would have been thrilled to know her encouragement found fertile soil.

When it comes to expressing the inexpressible, poetry is an effective tool. Whether you think you can write poetry or not, you need to try. You may find a celebration or healing in words.

3 comments:

Josh said...

That is a cool parable.
I wish I had the motivation to write poetry like I used to.

Orikinla Osinachi. said...

The parable reads like the word of God to Rebekkah the wife of Isaac when she was pregnant with Isau and Jacob.

There is a genius in everyone as much as there is also a hero in everyone.

writergrll said...

Yes, I too, am responding to the wonderful parable. It's about how we wish to live-- as a victim or as (hmmm, is there a true opposite to victim??)how we wish to survive...

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I enjoy good writing by writers and poets who are not famous. My mother said I was born a hundred years too late. The older I get, the more I realize how right she was.

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