Looking today at the blurb to Days Poem (the book is available here), which I wrote (both the book and the blurb), I thought I would write about it—the blurb, and therefore the book. Apologia or explanation, who cares? Just thought I would push the validity of the statements, as I see them. The italicized sentences that follow come from the blurb, in original sequence. Won’t this be exciting!
Begun casually, the writing of Days Poem quickly grew into a necessity, even to plug onward. Beginning casually would be the norm for me. I sit down and I write. That does not indicate lack of seriousness, but that writing is an exercise performed with gradient consistency. One does not just wait for inspiration. Inspiration is a bogey anyway. One sees writers, Ginsberg and Whitman come quickly to mind, who endeavour the inspiration, usually a fail. The necessity arrived when I realized that I had to keep diligently filling the pages, id est:anyone can write half a poem. I would often type my way to the next page, just for the sake of the push.
In this way, it resembles a journal or novel, tho it claims neither genre as its own. Well, simply enough, I was aware that I was building something in a linear fashion, the daily accumulation. I can also see dates and events that occurred during the writing, and the reader might notice a change of seasons, as reported. I did not follow a calendar or narrative, however; the days just made their mark.
It started with an idea of writing large and embracing extent. Jim Leftwich’s Doubt, a 500 page poem published by Potes & Poets Press truly influenced me. Just the idea of such a long poem gave me a tingle of possibility. The dense, contrite prose of his book, with lavish, singular sentences, drew my interest. The early pages of Days Poem reflect my reading of his book at the time.
It settled (and unsettled) itself within the compelling philosophical argument that it is what it is. Not to commandeer Bill Belichick’s Stoic practicality, but confidence purposed me to accept the peregrinations that the writing took, even to the obsessive reverberations of bears, hobos, Tarzan & Jane, and Fu Manchu.
The thrill of relentlessness and perseverance pushed it until, you know, it came to an end. Each of the 412 sections represents the writing of a day. Only a handful of days saw no writing. I kept no goal for ending it, by date or by section or page count. I wrote on my wedding day, on Christmas, for the 9 days Erin was in the hospital, during my father’s hospital stay, and travelling hither and yon (Utah, Idaho, West Virginia, and New Hampshire). And then one day, I found that I was done.
I wanted to play with hobos and bears, and Tarzan & Jane, and Walden Pond, and all the words between. I guess play is central here. I played with an anachronistic yet meaningful vision of hobos, and saw bears, Tarzan, Jane, and Walden in vivid unlikeliness.
I wanted a little amazement in every day. That is what writing is for me. Days Poem could be styled my La Vita Nuova, as it grew and prospered in my new life with Beth and Erin. Thus the dedication, which cannot say enough.