And Still… I Write


Last December, I posted an entry about the daily writing practice I learned from poet Kim Stafford. As a prose writer, I tend to think in sentences and paragraphs. I find that Kim’s instructions—“write something like a poem… or notes toward a poem… or sets of lines that never become a poem”—are especially freeing for me. Most of the time this practice results in words and sets of lines that never become a poem, or an essay, or anything more than, as Kim describes, “the open sesame” move that helps me get my pen (or keyboard) moving.


There are plenty of days I note frustrations or questions like these that I scribbled one morning:

I want to write about passion for work, even when my own passion for writing feels like watered-down coffee, like a cocktail that is mostly melted ice, like the rock-hard heel of bread. How can I cherish those times, as well as the days the yeast bubbles, the steam rises?

Those notes (and metaphors) then led to more words (and more mixed metaphors) that only resemble a poem to the extent that I wrote them in sets of lines:

Some days, the flowers  

droop, the cake

falls flat, the ink 

clings inside the cartridge

instead of flowing onto

the page.  And still…

I write.17af8-writingphotobest


But, I like where I ended up—still writing.


  1. I like this very much. Whenever I read your self-commentary, I think of my own experience of writing. I don’t write very much, or very often, but when I do, and it goes well, I think to myself, “Hmmmm, I could DO this”. But then I get distracted, and caught up in all the other stuff I can do. But reading your accounts of your starts and stops and starting again reminds me that maybe I COULD do it, writing I mean. Hmmmmm, maybe …….

    Sent from my iPad


  2. I have no doubt that you COULD, Mickey! In fact, you have – meaningful and insightful pieces at that. One of the reasons I “confess” to my starts, stops, and doubts is for a little reality check (for myself and readers) about the nature of the writing process. I know it just flows for some writers, but if the number of writing books, blogs, prompts, and tips are any indication, most of us need lots of help to start – and keep – the pen moving.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s