Burgeoning Poet II

Burgeoning Poet II
(a found poem from an unusual source)

Let me guess:

You tried to write a poem in regards
to human behavior and it wasn’t well received,
fell apart, blew up in your face…

You are a burgeoning poet, always
seeking that perfectly brilliant assembly
of lines, that elegant turn of phrase.
Human behavior is rarely, if ever, elegant.

The Universe is full of these
odd bumps and twists. Perhaps
you need to make your poem
less elegant, more accessible,
less perfectly precise, more descriptive,
less brilliant, more real.

It’s not going to be as perfectly pretty,
but it might be better heard,
a bit more relatable.

And remember, while you’re writing (learning)
about human problems…there’s going to be pain
and disappointment. You have to ask yourself:

“Is it worth it?”

If your response is in any way affirmative,
no more than the slight swiftest silent nod
at your inner ear, you will know that you are on
the path to becoming the you that you
are in the act of creating.

Elizabeth Crawford 2/1/14

Notes: In the course of writing to the Sunday Whirl prompt, I ended up writing about being caught between two worlds: those of numbers and words, a reality for me for most of my existence. I had to do some checking on facts and where I found them. I spend my leisure (escape hatch) time watching past episodes of old TV series I somehow missed when I was more physically capable of easy movement. One of them is Numb3rs in which Charlie Eppes is a mathematician helping the FBI solve varied crimes. In the Pilot Episode, a distraught Charlie seeks out his past professor, mentor, and now best friend because his solution didn’t pan out as expected.
His friend, Dr.Larry Fleinhardt, played by Peter MacNicol, responds to Charlie’s distress using much of the wording in the above poem. Of course, he was speaking to his Math student, but in my head, I heard poet. That’s why I refer to the poem as found. I simply replaced the elements of his mathematical discussion with those of the poet and added the last stanza to complete it. Larry’s character is eccentric, to say the least, but often unknowingly funny and very wise.
I have taken to adding the music that often accompanies my forays into poetry, either during the writing or immediately afterward. This one was easy. The song is another favorite and reminds me of the character Larry for several reasons. His is that of a spiritual seeker, trapped in a world that prizes logical and practical response. Something I relate to easily. The song always makes me smile and reminds me of Larry, even his voice is similar to that of the singer. It may be found here:

About 1sojournal

Loves words and language. Dances on paper to her own inner music. Loves to share and keeps several blogs to facilitate that. They can be found here: https://1sojournal.wordpress.com/ https://soulsmusic.wordpress.com/ http://claudetteellinger.wordpress.com/
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24 Responses to Burgeoning Poet II

  1. brian miller says:

    that is really cool where you found the poem…and translating it through your own frame into poetry…there is wisdom in it…the making it less pretty and thus more accessible is solid and true….sometimes we can get so lofty in verse that our readers miss the point…and what then have we really accomplished?


  2. A fantastic write, and interesting process notes, kiddo. I especially love that answering in the affirmative means we are “becoming the person we are in the act of creating.” Perfect!


  3. Mary says:

    I really like the idea of becoming the YOU you are in the process of creating. That speaks to me. Perhaps we first create our identity in poetry….and then we live the live we created. I like to think that is possible MUCH of the time. We have to begin somewhere. The poetic journey and the life journey IS worth it indeed.


  4. I was really impressed with how you framed and formatted this… there are so many lines,words and phrases that can be related to….


  5. Gillena Cox says:

    “Art imitates life” if so then? that certainly has to be the equation; good write

    Have a nice Sunday

    much love…


  6. Myrna says:

    I used to watch that show. I really like how you wrote about poetry from dialogue about math. So clever. Thank you for the notes. I appreciate knowing the background of such a good poem.


  7. I loved this–I always love when we write about process–it is such an intimate thing


  8. scotthastiepoet says:

    Oh Elizabeth – what a strong write – felt like you were addressing me directly and knew of all my hesitations… A telling piece of writing…


  9. gillena says:

    “The Universe is full of these
    odd bumps and twists. Perhaps
    you need to make your poem
    less elegant, more accessible”

    A pertinent reality check

    Have a nice Sunday Elizabeth

    Much love…


  10. annell4 says:

    What a wonderful poem found from an unusual source. I like that you were able to make the translation. It is said, the Universe is always trying to get in touch with you, and you captured what it was saying. Words just waiting for your magic touch!


  11. Sumana Roy says:

    Love this process of growth, to rise from being to becoming. The third stanza is superb.


  12. A strong poem. Thank you for sharing how you were inspired to write it.


  13. We each draw from sometimes unlikely wellsprings for the voice of our poetry. This was an interesting journey!


  14. magicalmysticalteacher says:

    Is writing poetry worth it? Always!


  15. Sherry Marr says:

    I know there is a connection between mathematics and music, so there must be as well between numbers and poetry. Cool and thought-provoking poem, my friend.

    Sherry, think of all the different poetry forms, many of which use counted syllables. Iambic pentameter is formed by using meters and a beat of expressed and ‘unexpressed’ syllables. That’s the connection of numbers to poetry, and the music that it creates, that sometimes becomes lyrical in nature. I actually chose to write in free verse form because of my issues with numbers and math, only to later realize that my background with music is what really made my poetry work (when it does). I actually considered a life as a song writer, long before I began writing poetry, but put that aside when I realized I had no real musical training. My singing was a natural thing, you could say I played my instrument by ear, lol, but that simply meant I had always been able to hear the cadence, and could replicate it without learning the math.



  16. ZQ says:

    Awesome reading for me.


  17. Its always worth it to write poetry!


  18. Mary says:

    Indeed poems are not always well received….but if they are written authentically and honestly, that is the most important thing…in the end.


  19. “Real” poetry is the best kind. 😉 Great poem!


  20. oldegg says:

    It is easy enough to write the words down the problem is make them have such feeling to the reader that they can experience what do too.


  21. thotpurge says:

    You tried to write a poem in regards
    to human behavior and it wasn’t well received,
    fell apart, blew up in your face…
    Gosh! Wish I didn’t relate to that so much 🙂 Beautifully penned words of advice Elizabeth…thank you!


  22. Rosemary Nissen-Wade says:

    I love what you say in the poem – how right to recognise the application to poetry as well mathematics. The music track was cute, slightly hypnotic; to me not much fitting with the poem, but hey these things are subjective.

    The singer begins by saying that he left his door open just a crack. Which always makes me think of the path into the subconscious and the treasures it holds, like 10 thousand lightning bugs, each one a memory, or feeling that might change or heal us in some fashion. At the end he says he kept some in a jar, and that jar might be the conscious mind that has now been given new ideas like small darting lightning bugs, which can help us find new ways of seeing, thinking, and ways of believing which he also refers to. He also speaks of dreams and sleeping, that time when the subconscious mind is most active, as well as creative.



  23. Jae Rose says:

    Perhaps the best poems dare not to be pretty


  24. Myrna Rosa says:

    Best poetry lesson I’ve had. I can relate to poetry falling apart in spite of my efforts to “decorate” it with flowery words. So interesting how you got your inspiration for this poem.


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