[Poem a Day] “It’s Been Long Enough”

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Ended up at a place where I used to work retail the other day.

Actually ran into someone who had given her two weeks’ notice around the same time I had decided to pull a “went out for cigarettes and never came home” (a better opportunity came up) . She was back in the uniform – apparently plans hadn’t panned out, and she needed to fall back on the old job.

Maybe that’s why I didn’t bother calling it in with my old retail job. Wanted to sever that line for myself – steel a little resolve by only leaving one direction to move in.

[Poem a Day] “Cartographer”

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I’m prone to getting very homesick, regardless of how you think home makes me feel based on the poems I’ve written about it. It even happens when I’m on vacations where I’ve got every reason not to think of home, and I’m only going to be away for a few days at the very most. I like seeing new places, but there’s always a detachment from them that sort of nags at me – keeping me from enjoying being out and about as much as maybe the people I’m with are.

Maybe I’m just a hopeless homebody?

[Poem a Day] “Inherent Music”

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There’s always music coming from somewhere.

For all the shit that I talk about the bustle of the urban scramble and the drowning noise of big cities, a thing that gets to you after a while in my neck of the woods is just how quiet it gets around here. It almost comes as a surprise sometimes when you see another human being outside the window – for all the noise this stretch of stopover makes, you’d think that you’re the only one out here.

But I always associate the city with some kind of music.

I really dig that about it.

[Poem a Day] “Fortune, Without Us”

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There was a time in my life where I was really into Tarot.

I owned no less than three different decks, and knew the cards inside and out. Though I never really fully subscribed in the idea that they had any kind of handle on what anyone’s future held, I liked to use them as prompts for meditation – whatever cards I pulled for the day would be things to think about for the past, present, and future. It was actually a nice little tool for self-reflection.

While I don’t really have my head in the cards these days the same way I did back then, I still find myself thinking about the odd one here and there sometimes. The Fortune card is one of them – something that indicates the turning of the wheel of fate – the cycles of life and destiny. Today, I’m kind of thinking of it in the context of time. Something that turns not for us, per se, but turns while we’re around – and will keep turning past us.

[A MINOR RECAP] Blue’s 2017 #Topnine

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The end of December is going to mark five months of me posting a poem up on Instagram every day. Five months of writing things I feel good about uploading – really doing my best not to miss a single day.

In a lot of ways, poetry seems easier on Instagram – it’s a medium that loves Hallmark length epithets of love and belonging and pain – a lot of us don’t have to dig terribly deep to find something to say about that. But at the same time, while I play to the tune of the format, I really try to only post pieces I can really feel myself in. I’ll write stanza-long pieces, but I don’t want to compromise my own style doing so. I still want to flash photographs in front of the screen and try to make you see them moving. I don’t want to be any less “me” on my Instagram front than I am writing pieces for magazine submissions, and my poetry collection.

Looking back at five months really brings you to terms with who you are as a writer. If you step outside yourself enough, it’s sort of like reading someone else’s poetry book and picking apart the common thematics, the recurring threads, the constant characters. As a writer, I like to think that everything I put down on the page is an artifact of myself and where I was at the time of writing, so in a weird way, these 200 or so uploads on my Blue Notes page has kind of been an exercise in hearing myself, and really trying to parse out what I have to say.

Knowing yourself happens in weird ways sometimes, I suppose.

To be honest, I’m not terribly sure what I’m getting at in this post. Maybe it’s less for you and more for myself – some kind of personal affirmation that I’ve done this for this long and want to keep doing this going forward until it hits whatever end that it hits. Maybe I need to put this down in words to make it concrete. Maybe I’m counting on you guys to keep me honest, so I don’t just sweep this entire thing under the rug one day and go on doing something else.

2017 got me to a point where I can do this – put work out there for people to see, and feel confident that it’ll connect with people without sacrificing my own voice for a louder half measure. For 2018, I’m gunning for something bigger.

As for what that is…maybe I’ll check back in with you next December about that.


[Poem a Day] “Urban Pause”

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I seem to always find myself in New York at least once when winter rolls around every year. That familiar bite of the urban wind-tunnel gets me every time, no matter how deep I shove my hands into my pockets – no matter how many layers I throw on in the morning.

Last year I was there, I thought I wanted to make indie movies on YouTube. It was my anchor for those few months – something that felt like it was going to last. But this year, I’m in a completely different headspace – my camera wasn’t even with me when I left my house for the train station.

Jesus, I wonder where I’ll be next year.