This is a change from my normal posts, which are typically poems and the occasional story tidbit. This is an actual blog entry, which feels strange (though I blog about addiction and mental illness at recovery102). This is about writing and my writing process, which is a bit unusual for me.
My poems are not…pretty. They’re just not, or so I feel. Don’t get me wrong–I love them, and I have no plans of changing the way I write or the dark themes of my poems. I don’t believe I could change even if I wanted to. I sit down at the keyboard and out comes the work. I channel it. Some call it tapping into the unconscious, though I prefer to think of it as tapping into the Cosmic Signal. It’s just the truth that comes through the Cosmic Signal isn’t for everyone. Say, my mother. I think my poems would needlessly worry her. I have no clue what my father would think. My wife reads them and comments on them sometimes, though she confesses that many poems simply don’t make sense. That’s fair; sometimes they don’t make sense to me.
But I think truth and beauty can coexist and don’t fall under anyone’s specific guidelines. Truth isn’t often pretty, but it can still be beautiful. Death can be beautiful; a poem that renders the experience of human suffering can be beautiful.
I’m not sure why I’m trying to convince myself that it’s all right–more than all right, it’s perfectly fine and what I’m supposed to do–to write a poem about a man eating a blood-filled cake. Or a poem about a man contemplating suicide. Or a couple walking through a ruined marketplace, getting drunk, with the man telling the woman he’s deciding whether or not he should kill her. There’s terrible beauty in the words, and I feel comfortable saying that because I stand back when I finish writing (most days) and say something like, Fucking hell. That was unexpected…but BAM! Truth!
I write a lot about women dealing with depression and addiction and lost loves and abuse…why? I’m not sure, and delving into that might be rich territory for my therapist. Adopting the persona of a woman in my writing often feel natural. I usually play female characters in video games, too. The feminine side of my spirit is perhaps dialed a little higher than in some men, and that’s fine.
I suppose this entry serves as encouragement to keep writing truth as I receive it and then (the part I’m struggling with now) submitting to markets as I did last year. I have 130 poems at the ready…I just need to take the time to find good markets for them, send them out with love, and hope they find good homes.
With so much hate and anger in America right now, I guess I wonder if my poems (dark, twisted, often pain-filled) can combat the hate and anger. But maybe they’re not supposed to. Maybe my poems can serve as avenues for people to say, “I resonate with that.” Perhaps it’s the same as when I feel depressed (which, even though I take medication, is often) I listen to depressing music and feel a connection.
I fear this entry is terribly rambling, but I felt the need to share it. I also wanted to thank everyone who takes time to read my poems. We don’t know each other personally, but our spirits recognize each other.
Or so I believe.