Let me be frank: I’m forcing myself to write so THIS will be my next blog entry, and not another 5 minute Wednesday…which, while exhilerating, I know, can’t be the only thing I write.

Anyway, 5 minute Wednesday is up tomorrow.

Today is drag-through-the-mud Tuesday.

Have you ever seen a three-year old recite the poetry of a former U.S. Poet Laureate? Named Billy Collins? It’s staggering.

And here’s Billy Collins reciting it:

I love watching these videos side by side because one thing becomes very clear: sometimes, it doesn’t matter if you understand what you’re reading. Especially when it comes to poetry. What that kid has that many of us never grasp is an instinctual love of language, of images, of the feeling of the words in his mouth.

A few days ago, Billy Collins and the three-year old met. Samuel Chelpka is the kid’s name. He’s now four.

When I was in college, my favorite professor taught a poetry writing class. I wanted to take it, I wanted to learn the economy of words. I wanted to learn how to write with three colors or an entire palette. But I was terrified of the class, and managed to graduate a Creative Writing major without it.

Creative, indeed.

Even now, the thought of writing a poem frightens me. I’ve written one poem in my life, and it was to my sister, while she was pregnant with my nephew.

And so, I continue to play, with some carelessness, with words in this way.

And I continue to read poems by people who face this fear each time they write, and somehow, miraculously, overcome it.

 

 

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