I Want to Write a Poem
I want to write a poem.
I want to write a poem about life and living,
about growing old and dying,
about giving when there’s nothing left to give
about taking up space and time in the world.
I want to write about love,
tender, sweet, soft open love,
and terribly confused and convoluted love,
about love unrequited,
about love of parents,
about love of strangers.
I want to write about standing
on the sea shore
feeling the breakers all around me
smelling salt air and hearing the gulls,
feeling the sand beneath my feet,
feeling the powerful tide pulling me out.
I want to write about letting go and drifting.
I want to write about hurting others - -
the power it gives you
and the shame that overshadows
and how it never seems to make up
for your childhood,
but always makes you remember.
I want to write about eyes
that burn into your soul
from someone you’ve never met before,
someone you’ve known all of your life.
I want to write about flying
above the clouds and
seeing circle rainbows
around the shadow of the plane,
about watching the wings bend
and wondering when they will finally break.
I want to write about a man in a graveyard
standing over a tiny grave
holding a small plastic toy
crying tears no one else will ever know.
I want to write about children,
the ones that grow to adulthood,
the ones that carry your seed in them,
and carry their own also.
I want to write about injustice,
bad things happening to good people,
about pain that looks to be misplaced,
about the vicissitudes of life and living,
about how great resources
become a burden to the rich
about how I would gladly
help them carry this burden.
I want to write about time and space,
the smell of ozone after a lightning strike,
the colors of an oil slick on the waters,
the way a snake moves across the sand,
about counting the rings in a tree to find its age,
about having to kill the tree to count the rings,
about whether it’s worth the knowing to kill the tree.
I want to write about athletes
sacrificing their whole lives
to run a little faster,
jump a little higher,
lift a little more,
and then die, having accomplished
only that one thing - -
I want to write about the poet,
locked in his room by the muse that feeds him,
chained to the keyboard or pen,
pouring out the most sacred private parts of his soul,
to be offered up at the next open mic,
given for a few claps of fewer hands
or slaps on the knee, so the listener can
hold his own work and prepare to read - -
about the lure of the microphone,
the warmth of the spotlight,
the call of the host,
the comments afterward,
the simple recognition,
the incomprehensible shamelessness of the addiction.
I want to write about childbirth,
causing infinite joy,
confusion in the face
of a power that overwhelms,
beholding a person never beheld before,
the feeling of powerlessness
in the presence of eternal power.
I want to write about everything,
about all that was, is, or will be,
about things never thought of before.
I want to describe places that are not,
and take you there for just a few moments,
so that, from this time forward,
this place that never was
will be a part of your memory.
It will have made you some of who you are,
and it never existed outside of your mind,
and my words.
I want to write.