I have missed poetry in my life, these past few months. My poetry books are waiting in a warehouse along with all our other belonging, for the reconstruction on our fire-damaged home to be completed. But that is not the only reason I have lost my connection to poetry.
I have been afraid of what would emerge if I let myself write.
So I have cut myself off from reading, writing, or responding to poetry. In the process, I have both let down a community I care deeply about and have lost a part of myself that I have desperately needed.
It's April. National Poetry Month. It's time to take a deep breath and let what needs air and sunshine bubble to the surface.
I am hoping to share the drafts of new poems written this month here with you. It is a way to re-commit to the act of writing poetry. It is also a way to step back from the perfectionist practices in my life. This is raw, first draft writing. It doesn't have to be perfect. It doesn't even have to be very good. It just needs to be written. And perhaps something I write will resonate with you, the reader, and you will write something in turn.
Fresh sheets always in the dryer, always
waiting for the door to open, waiting
to spill out on the floor of the laundry room.
White sheets on a dirt floor, indistinguishable
from the car wash towels, the dog
blanket, the once-white tube socks,
all uniformly gray. I try to bleach
my sorrow the color of boiled bone,
render it in the colander
of this grief. I lift the twisted mess
dripping grimy water
with the handle of a broom, snap
the wrinkles out of sheets
oblivion white. When I bury
my face to the folded stack
something still smolders.