The daily writing challenge for today had me traveling to my bookshelf. The prompt read:
“Go to a book you love. Find a short line that strikes you. Make that line the title of your poem. Write a poem inspired by the line. Then, after you’ve finished, change the title completely.”
Never one to eschew travel (or a challenge), I found this quote by Margaret Atwood: “War is what happens when language fails” and began to write.
I never know how the poem will end up when I begin, but true to past experience, the poem took on its own voice.
In the absence of language
My mouth is open, but silence
ensues. I don’t mean for words
to freeze like ice shards in my throat
but they do—-stabbing at the souls
of unsuspecting victims.
At the end of the day, the smell
of dirt sears into my nostrils.
Is that right? Or is what I smell
really the scent of decay?
Winter comes and the ice freezes;
all that remains are rotting leaves
that shimmer in frosty silence.
My tenuous step seems wise,
until the ice cracks into shards
and pierces my own heart
shattering any misconception
of innocence. Come spring the world
should smell like dirt, but for now
the icy absence of language
seems to be a weapon of war.
--draft poem by Carla Jeanne Picklo Jordan
Let me know what you think in the comments below. Share the love, write a poem, appreciate a good friend. Each moment is a new beginning.