Category Archives: D Loeven

Keeping the Butter On Your Poetic Potato

a baked potato with butter

Image via Wikipedia

If you feel like I do about the untying of your poetry,  (military boots really have more sizzle with spider lacing) – or ya know your eyes slit when shifts of splatterwords shuffle into recess lineups.   If mashing  ‘publish’ sends Mary Poppins clapping order into a Jackson Pollock phrase – and your poetry’s spacing means as much as that one inch butterchunk, cayenne pepper and chili powder, crunch of sea salt on thought’s potato –  means potato should align to the right of mashing as a highlight to chaos caused by organization!  If you feel like I do, without actually saying what you feel, about a cascade otherwise known as the formatting of poetry on wordpress, I found the proper lacing, splatter, and butter here.

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Be Brave and Other Things You Tell Yourself

like it’s popular to be tan and you white as death

think how time could earn you a darker shade if spent it out red

and blistered for a slip span

just in time for the popular to shift -and you damaged

pulled out by tide

washed up by tide

bleached of all know how and want –

like so much sand

idling for want of a horizon

best to pulse courage ain’t rely on borders so far

you can pinch its strait

-with one pull unravel

best to pulse courage

a gravity shaping the tide and you and all you stand on

Wr(talk)iting

I like public speaking.   Gathering info, organizing thoughts,  using bullet points.   My dream job.

Somewhere, though – somewhere.  It gets weird.

Maybe I begin editing mid-thought and ‘uh-wha-the-I-‘ comes out instead of the new cooler thing I just thought up.  Or the audience sounds like a laugh track, and I find myself doing crazier things in the weightlessness of ‘they think I’m funny!’  Crazier things like making jig movements with my arms and talking through my chin.  Things like saying, “Woooo!”  Like making sound effects to explain a point.  Making faces.  Jigging.  Goofiness slips into me and I have to stop.

So I smile when that happens.  Then I step behind the lectern of public speaking.  If I’m goofy short enough- if I catch it before they call me on it -it works.  I’m forgiven!  Laughs lurch in, fill the awkwardness.  Smooth it away.  Like being locked out of my house in my towel.  I’m embarassed-the neighbors are shocked—but all is forgiven if I’m terrified, apologetically hold the towel and make efforts to get in the door.  Maybe they’ll even chuckle as they back out of the drive.  IF, however, I were to saunter out in my towel, grab the paper, wave to a friend (casual and nonplussed) – disgust and rolling of eyes.  Being accidentally an idiot – okay.  But purposely- you’re in no man’s land.  A jerk.

So it is with speaking.  Walk too far out on the laugh track and hang over the edge– and the forgiveness (possessed, I say!  no-seizure, right?  Poor thing.) will turn into muddy silence.

SHIFT

Being sensitive to shifts remains the most powerful tool when speaking to a group.  When you lose someone (‘boring’, ‘can’t hear ya’, ‘hurry up’, ‘not this again’), they’ll shift.  Head drops to the hand, legs uncross then recross, bodies lean to one side.  A fire could break out.  Time is limited.  Change the subject.  Wrap up with quick words.  Caffeinate your tone.  Be abrupt.  And Edit.  Right then.  Chop up your nice sentence into baby mush and get to the next part.  If the speaker believes that moving to the next point will calm the shifting, the speech dies.  Keep to the key phrases, use a transition word and smile.  And move.  Walk about.  Gesture.  Find an eye.

Until, of course, you feel like jigging.

Wait For Noon

So, I’ve put on some wait. 

Wait until it’s perfect.  Wait until noon.  Wait for the results your freedom your peaceful moment.  Your moment will come.  It will come.  Just Wait.  To move the fingers if the feet are visible.  To cross my toes when the mood sours.  To wait -and shiver my show of patience.   I sink through a moment into the other side of the room, into the closet of another’s conversation.  Shift.  Smile.  Blink before the eye hardens.

A mob of thought erupts.    Aspirin and a glass of water.   Sun. Soil. Seed. 

Wait. 

A man’s arm stitching in the waves-

Wait.

A dog’s raised head on the roadside-     the shiver

of wait.

 The call for a calorie of thought.  Return.  Circle back.  Wait see look remember.  I let it pool on my lips.  Wait.  Pull at my hips.   

I try on the fat of it. 

Let it puddle in my expression, in my fingers.  Settle the brow.

Wait-

its gravity dulls the annoyance, the pull of shift.  The twist of keys.  Sharpens the appetite.  A pull into a kiss.  A sink into a hug.  A restlessness forgotten.  A slower lowered lumber of thought.  Return.  Circle back.  

 Wait for noon.  Wait for the results.  Your freedom.  Your peaceful moment.  Just- wait.

Our First Conversation

Let’s have it then!  Our first chat through this blog.  You’ll never know if you’d like me unless we do.  And I’ll never know.  Possibly.  And the best part remains the skipping.  Skipping over the surface straight to the spirit.  Because that’s what I’ll do here.  What writing will do for you.  Skip the pepper in your teeth comments and head straight into the blue highways.  Travel the length, swirl around and then back out when you wish.  You’ll know me better than those who’ve spoken to me face to face- better than the grocery cashier, better than most first dates, better than myself- if I word this just right.

I’ll say you need air.  Give my name and rank when you ask.  I’ll laugh off characters as imaginary.  As accidents.  I’ll twist away from the hives, the clovers of the highways.  Detour.  Closed road.  I’ll draw a page over myself -leave you bobbing on the surface. 

 And if I ever do-

remind me of our first conversation.