Poem in process

Kei Miller - 2 March 2010

I've been toying with this idea for the past week - to present to you a poem in process. I always chicken out. Sharing a poem in its early stages is not something we should generally do - they often start out quite badly, and with me I often take several wrong turns to begin with before I figure out what it is I really want to do, and what is it the poem can do. But maybe this process might be useful to some of the students who pass through - to see some of the ideas I try out and then discard...

It's a perfect time to do this experiment because I've just been asked to write a poem on 'Bob Marley' for a journal. I would have usually passed on such a commission; I don't think poems about such iconic people usually work and it's a tough challenge to avoid the usual cliches and sentimentality that can creep into a 'tribute' poems.

So, to be honest, I'm not sure if this will work - but each day for the next week, I will try to shape a draft of this poem.

I will begin by listening to some of his music tonight. I know I want the poem (like every poem) to be musical, to be flavoured with the language and faith of RastafarI. That's all I have for now. Tomorrow I'll put down some words.

Feel free to comment and ask questions as I go along.

Comments:

These are the lines that I find really affecting and beautiful: 'And when the miles between here and home/Get too plenty.Your poem's coming together! I'd love to hear you reading it on the archive.

Pages

Add comment

Log in or register to post comments

Term of the day

Blank Verse

A form based on unrhymed lines of iambic pentameter.

Guided Tours

A tour of the Children's Archive with Jean Sprackland

There are so many good poems in the Children's Archive, it's hard to know where to start! I'd like to share with you...

Featured Guided Tours