For the past month, I have been working on something, but as with any project worth anything it is driving me around the twist. I have found that when I have got to this point during the day I have to do something else, otherwise I am liable to delete everything, permanently. I am a queen at hoovering the house, scrubbing the worktops, watching rubbishy telly. And of course reading. I have read a number of very impressive books over the last while (The Snow Child – Eowyn Ivey, Orkney – Amy Sackville, returning to George Orwell’s 1984) but this month the most delight I have found is within the pages of poetry books (Penguin’s Poems for Life, Pablo Neruda, Janet Paisley, Seamus Heaney).
Poetry forces me to sit still reading and re-reading. Giving me the time to absorb the language and imagery and to appreciate the complex nature of writing.
Since I have found myself reading poems again I have noticed that my mind keeps forming sentences and stories that don’t work within the traditional structure of a short story, perhaps it is more suited to the structure of a poem. Hence for this months offering I have included an extract of a few lines from one such poem (currently untitled). I have been trying to stitch this piece together for a while. I know where I am going, but I am finding the path to it broken and disjointed. While, this would normally annoy or frustrate me for this one composition I am thoroughly enjoying the to-ing and fro-ing.
I know I will eventually produce a final piece, be it a poem, experimental story or traditional short story but for the moment it is a poem that does not wish to end.
This extract is taken from somewhere in the middle, at present, it will change again.
Crack, the cheap wood splits and splinters,
Folding, resting into triangles of an accordion bellows.
The lid forced downwards, tight, and close
Finally pressed onto cold lips.
Sinking and collapsing into the eternal resting bed of damp clay
An exact rectangle, four by ten, of naked brown earth.
The JCB passes onto another
All falls still and silent.