I was very pleased that a new sequence of poems about my time as a nurse arrived the other evening. It was one of those occasions when I began to write without really knowing where the writing was going. These are the poems I love best; the ones that seem to know something I don’t and to spend this knowledge as they unfold, leaving me empty at the end. I am grateful for the gift of them and know that this happens only rarely. I sometimes forget that this happens and don’t think I’ll ever write a poem again.
Until next time a poem arrives in this way, I’ll intermittently practice and play with words. Some poems come from the edge of consciousness – the focus you bring when you begin to write means you are barely aware of writing them.
Poems also get written when I try to more consciously make them, and this will sometimes be ‘successful.’ By writing and reading I will hopefully keep alert to sound and immersed in language, a place where I am a humble guest.