I wrote the majority of the poem below at one of Bakersfield’s quirkiest fast food drive-thru windows. They make fabulous veggie breakfast burritos, so my intent to feed Emma and take a moment or two of solace was met when I stumbled past my to-do list for a moment of writing play from a page of a college text book published the year I was born.
I wrote with a very appropriate yellow, number two wooden pencil. I wrote in cursive and asked my sixteen-year-old son if he could even read cursive. “Kinda,” he said from the back seat as I showed him my fledgling work of art.
Any tiny slice of these moments this morning would never entered into the minds of the faculty of Louisiana Polytechnic institute when the pored over the just right content and the most highly regarded readings for college freshman who were born while Europe was being flattened by hate and might and fervor.
When this writer-poet-word-lover started making art and word prompts from book pages purchased at library book sales and SPCA Fundraisers, word-lust and art collided to create… what you’ll find below.
By the way, a fun way to create writing prompts on the go is to use a daily newspaper. Circle three words from an article and use those words to inform your content in a poem or a paragraph, a tweet or an Instagram story.
Now, for this poem:
Blue Waltz and Brillcreem – (She loves the words exactitude and abstraction together)
Exactitude met abstraction in two lines in a 1950’s textbook
staunch and quirky, measurable and a running-off-the-table’s edge
puddle straddling similar yet always slightly or eons apart concepts,
Can you see them? free range and structured words abandoned,
unpolished: abstract exactitude – sweet and savory, Abbott and Costello
letters whose sole aim was to assist today’s dead or nearly dead then adolescents figure
out what language really meant.
Language: still alive and forever
captured because this poem is being written now, decades later
and you are in fact reading or hearing this
language habadashery, stitched earnestly into a semblance
of something – hopefully not completely unpleasant.
The wonder, the strength of the academic lust mixed with brill creem and
Blue waltz, cardigans and denim, cuffs turned up at the bottom –
Nothing but ephemera now. Intangible abstraction, once fragrant
Exactitude mixed with optimism and blind hope-filled ambition
It isn’t brilliant poetry AND yet it felt so good to write. The process opened me to some fun language I may continue to play with perhaps as a stand alone prompt or two or perhaps, I’ll take this poem on a “revision date” and feel full with it.
My bet is YOU have writing that would benefit from a revision date as well.
I just had a thought we might create a time of “revision date night” and pull out works such as these to fine tune and prepare for publication. Definitely worth considering.
I’ll close with a video I just created to inspire your writing using the sense of smell. Since this post was inspired by a drive through window and this video was inspired by the smell of pancakes, let’s move there for a moment now.
Julie Jordan Scott inspires people to experience artistic rebirth via her programs, playshops, books, performances and simply being herself out in the world. She is a writer, creative life coach, speaker, performance poet, Mommy-extraordinaire and mixed-media artist whose Writing Camps and Writing Playgrounds permanently transform people’s creative lives. Watch for the announcement of new programs coming in soon!
To contact Julie to schedule a Writing or Creative Life Coaching Session, call or text her at 661.444.2735.