Friday, 8 May 2009

Fighting for the core (a process of writing)

It's a struggle sometimes to get to the heart of meaning, or what you mean to say, who you are; the process of identifying and honing your voice, your way of seeing and writing about the world. At times I find layer cake instead - sponge white moist layer upon layer, camouflaging meaning, which is further complicated by the voice of inner critics (harsh, immature and heckling interruptions). This poem attempts to capture this process...

The unraveling
I want to rip off the clothes
on all my words until they stand there
stark Bic blue pen naked
revealing the bare and unabridged truth
(letters stand shivering)
I want to rip out flowers
tangled in muddy patches, roots digging into dampness
and pluck each petal one by one
there is no room for dressing, ornament
I want to break down each construct
So carefully built, layer pressed upon layer
bricks laid for years, slowly to rise to a lopsided castle
that envelopes and protects all in its walls
I want to unwrap and marvel
at the surprise of unexpected tempos
unleashed like hunting dogs
intoxicated by the scent of wild rabbits
I will strip slowly, gloves landing first
on laminated wood floors
undress, undo, uncover
until peach flashes
like headlights on a cold, tortuous highway
words like Russian dolls cover each other
a tight embrace
painted meaning lost in shells
chambers that camouflage and season
being and intention
words my fair weather friends,
play games on the rain with polka-dot umbrellas
covering me from piercing stares
bare all or fade away
comfortably into the background
authenticity is the grain that exists
lodged inside wondrous fruit
Fuck me, I'm taking a bite
I'm tearing it apart
shaking letters down
finding the expression locked inward
flushing out inner critics
losing stage costumes, rhinestones and pearls
until I stand
wet, dripping, naked
in the middle of an empty stage
without a part to play
on display
in the midnight circus

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