Notes on the Writing Process:
Entering the Poem
Socrates says: "Go in fear of abstractions."
Simplify: begin to see that the leaf in nature is extraordinary.
What is it connected to?
Nouns: solidify--create definable reality.
A poem is the beginning of a world--heralds an awakening--it is a call to wonder!
The intention of the poem is always stronger than the writer's.
The poem and the audience demand participation--interaction--change.
All stories are stories of the sacred tribe. They are an attempt to explain
Write the poem or story in order of the sensation.
Writing poetry requires revolutionary change within as well as stamina and patience.
Gertrude Stein says: "It is not clarity that is desirable but force."
A poem, like an essay, is an attempt to follow a thought, reveal something brave.
Poetry is the uncovering of a world, the claiming of a landscape.
Have no taboos as a writer--invent a new way of being/seeing in the world.
Haiku: Autumn approaching.
Begin the story or poem with the crisis. Begin on the verge of change. Locate the place of risk.
Annie Dillard says: "Write as though you are writing to a group of terminal patients."
The poet's task is to put meaning into the possibility of order. To reconfigure
Art (in theatre especially) is our psychic necessity to rehearse dying.
Poetry: the translation of Spirit into voice.
Eternal questions: What is happiness? Grief? Loathing? Desire?
Shiva: Live with chaos and know you will be born again. Embrace change.
In a poem, the self is trying to negotiate a contact with divinity. It is an attempt at salvaging beauty.
Redefine and savor what is sacred to you as a poet. Share generously.
Olga Broumos: "Imagine what it is like not to hide and become that freedom--
Keats: Negative Capability:
Intention is the groundwork of change.
The detached mind of the writer is not looking for outcomes.
Exigencies: We write to be healed and changed for the better.
If poetry is inhabited by silences, what is the mass-media propagandists' agenda?
Art must always be a bold act of the Imagination.
Poems ask: "How can the human spirit exist, flourish, and be liberated?
A poem can hold time.
Avoid the Hero poem with the romantic "I" coming forward.
Writing is practice towards transcendence.
Synethesia: the mingling of the senses: creates a new vibration.
Poet as shamen: occluded truth coming to light.
An acute sense of dislocation prompts the poet to go deeper to find connection.
Beware of the interior poem: location can be muddy.
Poetry is aboriginal. Voice is a matter of being not speaking:
Line breaks are the energy of the poem:
The poet's impulse is to find her own gravity and chronology.
The poem must be vulnerable and allow itself to be broken.
Elizabeth Bishop says: "A poem is two things happening at once."
A poem can point towards an epiphany or contain one.
Ask yourself as a writer:
"Where do I hold back?"
Poetry is an organ of perception.
The poem extends the divine through the poet.