Monday, September 06, 2004

Loose Ends

ok, so I know I kinda fell off the face of the planet for a while due to Orientation (it was fabulous, in case you were wondering!) but I'm back (back in the sense of getting-ready-for-student-teaching-so-I-don't-actually-have-my-life-back) and I thought I'd contribute something. So here it goes.... *the title was provided/inspired by will*

Loose Ends

I have no idea what I’m doing, what I want
for my life, but I do know that someday (if I ever
have kids) they'll call you “Uncle Will.” You’ll pull
into my driveway at 3:00 am, ask why
they’re already asleep, and want a cup of coffee –
black. You’ll sit with them for breakfast at the kitchen
table, tell them over waffles why you have a tattoo
on each leg, behind each ear. They will see the world
in your hands, cracked and earthy and pulling farther
away from its center with each mile on your car.
And when my driveway is empty again, I’ll see
headlights in my window as I fall asleep at night,
hear Counting Crows sing “maybe things are different
this time” in the back of my mind, and swear
that I hear the sound of tires on gravel
as the coffee beans grind when I wake.

1 Comments:

Blogger Drew said...

Karen,

If my reading of this is correct, I think you're really hitting on an idea that is common in a lot of our lives right now - who will this person be to me in x number of years? The question is a good one during the "turbulent twenties" when everything appears in flux.

I really like the style / tone you evoke in this - somewhat meditative, personal, quiet, questioning. This - to me - feels like a poem that can do a lot and succeed or be effective in a lot of ways. I like what's going on.

My suggestions for revision are this -

1) try tinkering with shorter lines, it slows the poem down and almost makes it more contemplative / meditative, etc. It kind of emplies that each line is being irked out almost by need or against the poet's will (no pun intended). For example: "I have no idea what / I'm doing, what / I want / for my life , but" Maybe a bit dramatic in the example above, but worth experimenting with.

2) Give "Uncle Will" specific tattoos. You can never go wrong with specifics.

3) I'd like the Counting Crows to be singing the acoustic version. I know, I know, silly, silly, silly, but when I read it, that's what I heard: acoustic Counting Crows. Anyway ...

Overall, I really like this poem. The enjambment is solid, the idea is really good, really relevent. I can't say how much I like that aspect of it. I definitely know the idea of questioning who will be in your life and in what capacity in the future. It is scary and interesting - in other words, a good playground for poets. Keep playing around with it, I can't wait to see what you come up with!

Best wishes,

Drew

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