Thursday, April 27, 2006

Inspired by, Part II: Stephen King

Okay, this may seem a little odd. Stephen King writes horror, right? He doesn't right poetry (or at least doesn't publish it.) That's true, but he was a huge inspiration to me when I began writing. His stories grabbed my attention and wouldn't let go. I'm talking early King, the days of Pet Sematary, The Shining, The Dead Zone, and Firestarter. After the Tommyknockers, I lost interest in King's writing. It didn't keep my attention as much as other writers. But those early books blew me away. I would read any King book I could get my hands on. It freaked me out with the clowns and drains; the coming back from the dead in Pet Sematary - I had trouble sleeping because I wanted to finish the book. And all his books were better than the movies (and the movies were awesome!)
I'm adding him here because I learned about writing with, and about, emotion from him. He uses fear, one of life's most powerful emotions, and takes it to a new level. I tried to emulate that with my early writing. I would dream up scenarios and storylines and write what I think he would write. Most of the stories were never any good - too predictable, too copied, too tired - but I learned the technique of using my emotions and getting them in poetry. I don't have King's patience for pounding out page after page; I like to get it done in simple verses and let the reader fill in the rest. It works for me right now; it's not that I'm lazy, my work is better in those short bursts (at least I think so.) Like Neil Peart, King showed me that I was only bound by my imagination and my willingness to try. I'm sure both writers are very critical of their work; show me a good writer that isn't. But they learned that even though you are critical, you have to let that baby out into the world and see what happens. Sometimes the results are less than satisfactory, sometimes they are stunning. And again, like Peart, King inspired me to pick up a pen (or typewriter, then computer keyboard) and get something out there. Try to entertain someone, even if only for a moment. Since those first few, feeble attempts at writing, I've learned so much. I learned to write for myself, but never settle for the first draft. I 've learned to dig deeper and translate the feelings I have into words. I've learned that not everyone will like it or even care, and that's okay. I've learned, with the indirect guidance of two masters, that I do what I do because I love it, because I can and because I want to. And as long as I do that, I can achieve anything.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

out of season

the whisper fades faster than a summer day
the emotion swells like wheat in the Montana winds

radiant heat rises from an embarassed heart; cheeks blossom
the harvest, green and anxious, is reaped too early

and spoiled

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

I'm still here

I'm not sure what I am doing most of the time
and other times I'm in a bit of a funk
I try to focus but the edges are all rusty
like that nail that one summer
I'm trying to do the right thing but it gets all
upside in and outside down
and tangled like that slinky I used to love
and like that toy, some things cannot be untangled
unless you cut them, snip them, and sever the knot
or the cancer or the darkness, pull it out and cast it away
leaving a little less, still serviceable, but nothing quite the same
as the original
if it doesn't make you stronger, it'll probably make you fat
and ugly, because that's the image they project
those that mean something to someone, shallow,
perfect teeth, perfect chest, perfect abs, perfect lies
the disguise of beauty that hides the disgust and perversions that dwell
in the dark recess of the human psyche, even in those beautiful stupid

I'm still here

no more bitter than before, no less either
I see the stupidity and laziness and meanness and I feel sad
and angry and ashamed of us...the top of the food chain
the bottom of the dungheap

I try to teach but the willingness to learn isn't there
I try to guide but the directions are not taken
I try to understand but the impulse is lost to me

so I write and I watch and I think

I'm still here


Thursday, April 6, 2006

The question so easily answered

I am smarter than this

(unscrew the cap and fill the glass again)

Clock: 12:38

Shit, I have to be up in 6 hours.

How can I be so weak?

Monday, April 3, 2006


the urge sulks away, leaving me empty and unfulfilled
basic sustenance will have to suffice for now
i try to open my eyes and fail to notice they were never shut
the stench of denial fills my soul, I mentally gag
and my eyes adjust to the watery light of a solitary
truth, yet it is too obscure to see clearly
it fades, ebbing and flowing into the eternal vacuum
lapping the alien shores of distant emotions,
never ending
like dying dreams with no place to rest, moving
from one entity to another dimension
beyond comprehension and reason
above the prayers and pleas
into the realm where all are equal
into the darkness
where I dwell
nowhere everywhere
no one everyone
nothing everything
they all fade

Saturday, April 1, 2006


The silence deafens and the darkness blinds
weightless word pass from mouth to ear
eyes seek the floor as heads and hearts hang low
neither can face the other's fear

no one finds answers when the screaming prevails
and the confusion grows more and more unreal
as razor sharp tongues cut and slash
broken hearts take longer to heal

Minds (and hearts) wander to find better times
looking into the future or past
the future's unpredictable, and yesterday's gone
How can two souls make it last?

Anger rises and tempers flare
crushing a moment of retreat
The feelings are withered, there's nothing to share
the end makes the circle complete

When it started they'd die for one another
Living those special moments when they could smile
One grew apart and the other took for granted,
What's left to save and reconcile?

They both want something different,
yet something quite the same
One searches for it in the other
the other searches elsewhere in vain

Nothing can retrieve yesterday
nothing can guarantee tomorrow
The memories are all that will remain
when love melts into sorrow.