Unfurl - First Draft Poetry





My written thoughts always come out in the first draft in a somewhat "poetic" form. 

Bearskin's first real draft (there was an original draft that is nowhere near the same book) was written primarily in poems that I later fleshed out. One of my drawer manuscripts, Of Two Minds, was also written in poems to begin with, though it has only kept a few of its poems for its final draft. 

I *blame* this on my childhood obsession with L.M. Montgomery. Something of the rhythm of her writing has formed a big corner of my foundation when it comes to writing. I don't know that anyone else will see the similarity, but in my head, it's all growing from the same place. 

So last year, when I had a year of moving and baby-birthing and such, I told myself I'd write a poem a day to keep my writing habit. It pulled me through those months, and I enjoyed the simplicity of a short poem. I didn't need to flesh out the middle, or come up with small plot lines, or make sure I was describing my whole scene. I could just take a though, wrap it up, and let it out.

I no longer write a poem a day, but with the crazy whirl of summer I've decided that there are some days which will end up being "poem days" instead of "work on a book days". Especially since I decided to paint the bathroom - a perhaps ridiculous decision.

When I wrote this poem, I had just finished the Le Guin exercise on punctuation. Punctuation in poems can be even more meaningful, I dare say, and it was interesting to watch where I placed things and how they changed the poem. Also, line breaks became a form of punctuation, one of my most favorite to play with. I could see it all more than I saw it in the original exercise. I could play with it more in the poem.

And so, my poem a day, for this week, as it were, split in three:


Unfurl #1


The thing about the summer is:
there is no rush to the races. 

Thank goodness
I am not rushing 
to the races. 

Instead,

the light slants in the window,
the birds trill a call,
my sheets slide sideways,
and I lie still.  

Don’t rush. 
Don’t rush. 

Just watch the leaves 

unfurl. 


Unfurl #2


The thing about the summer is there is no rush to the races. 

(Thank goodness I am not rushing to the races.) 

Instead,

the light slants in the window, the birds trill a call, my sheets slide sideways, and I lie still.  

Don’t rush. Don’t rush. 
Just watch the leaves unfurl. 


Unfurl #3


The thing 
about the summer is 

there is no rush 
to the races. 

Thank goodness I am not rushing to the races! 

Instead, the light slants in the window, 
the birds trill a call, my sheets slide sideways, 

and I lie still.  

Don’t 
rush. 

Don’t 
rush. 

Just 
watch 

the leaves 
unfurl. 


Any favorites?



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