Thursday, April 4, 2013

Poem Hands For April 4

April 4, 2013 Just a word or two or seventeen or whatever. Poetry is. I was going to make some sweeping obvious statement that poetry is – whatever. But poetry, like most forms of art, depends both on the writer’s intent and the reader’s interpretation. If the reader does not know the writer’s reference points, they have to supply their own to make the words make sense. Maybe this seems obvious. If I write about how beautiful the sky is outside my window, you bring the sky outside your window into the poem. As subjective and personal as my sky might seem to me, the interchange between my words and your imagination makes that same sky universal. Sometimes, that’s easy, as when I write about universal themes. But sometimes it is a little bit of work for you, to assimilate, understand, and re-apply my words to your frames of reference. That makes a poem a dialogue. I like that. No writer really wants to be shouting at himself all day. //HANDS //I’m vain about my hands. //You couldn’t tell it //from the cat scratches //and paper cuts. //It’s how I hold my pen. //Firm in right hand, left out //for balance, Star Trek mug filled hot. (//I could write left-handed //but nobody could read me //and what’s the point of that? //If I’d wanted to be unread //I’d become a cryptographer.) //I use both hands on the keyboard, //hunt and peck, peck, peck. //I’m vain about my hands, //they’re how I reach out to you.

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