I made it five days into the glorious month of poetry before bowing out (gracefully?). Well, that’s not entirely true — I have still been writing this past week and I have a few poems to show for it, but none that I want to share right now.
NaPoWriMo is just not happening for me this year. Pieces of my mind are scattered in so many different places that I can’t quite gather them together long enough to compose something I like enough. And trust me, if I don’t like it enough, you’re sure not going to. Perhaps after some revision to those poems I’ll share them with you at a later time. I’ll still keep writing for the rest of the month, naturally. Will try to keep up with each day as much as I can, but what I really want to do is focus on more extended pieces of writing for now. So we’ll see where that goes. But besides that, what I even more really want to do (I know that isn’t right, but it just sounds so much more fun — why can’t we have fun with words?) and what I am doing a lot of right now, is concentrating a lot more on developing good writing in my students. And that takes a lot of time and energy. More than you’d think. So that also takes away from time given to my own writing. But I love it so much! And don’t worry, I won’t teach my students to write incorrect sentences like my one above — but I will teach them to experiment and have fun with the language and perhaps come up with their own funny ways of saying things that are otherwise just boring.
As a final salute to NaPoWriMo from me for this year, I’ll share one of the poems I wrote this past week — just to not leave you with nothing.
It was supposed to be a love poem to an inanimate thing. And this is sort of a love poem… though not quite.
To My First Car
by Ruqaiyah Davids
I never liked you much.
In fact, I could hardly stand you.
And it was no secret too.
You were unwanted and unloved—
A harsh, cold, ugly truth,
Just like your harsh, cold, ugly exterior.
But you were needed.
I needed you like you needed a good paint job—
Without you my life would not have been the same.
Without you, I would have been stuck,
You gave me freedom;
A temporary escape on the journey between two worlds.
You gave me reflection and introspection.
You weren’t very well-liked by my friends or my family.
And I’m not sure if you know this,
But they often made fun of you.
My sister hated you—
She always complained
When having to climb into your hard, unwelcoming backseat,
Which was a mighty task considering you only had two doors.
But I wonder how she would have got around without you…
Or how I would have.
I would always defend you when they’d mock you.
Because even though you were loud and rough,
And dusty and dented,
And peeling and painful to look at—
You were mine.
You were my first.
You came to me at a time in my life that I did not want you,
But I needed you.
And that counts for so much more.