the source

A girl sits at the tiniest table
At the back of the room.
All around people recount their lives,
earn jests from the listeners
and a smile from the girl who should not hear.

The unaware have particular motives in the telling,
but promote unturned possibilities in the hearer.
They remark
on what wonders might be written
from their banality – from them,
not knowing who takes note.

Words pirouette before the speakers
and the girl, silent and alone,
listens, waiting
to recognize when
there's a poem in that.

the process

Little poet comes to town
to sell her words for bread.
She gets lost amid the crowd;
despair bows low her head.

She sees the inspiration
for a poem at the cafe,
in tired eyes and dirty hems,
the lives in disarray.

These pieces for her dinner poem
add up to no avail;
she's lost without the words
and the bread has gotten stale.

the goal

Look around you.
Yes, you. I don't care
where you are:
at the gym, at your desk,
in your little prison cell.
All around you, those are poems.
You don't see them?
Look harder.
Hear them. Smell them;
taste the poem in your lunch.
Feel them in your toes.
The poems are toying with you,
waiting for you to write them.
Give in just once
and see where they take you.
They can take you somewhere
or deep,
or black,
or eternal….
Let them fill you up.
Are you afraid?
You should be.
Write out your fear, bleed it onto the page.
Are those the right words?
You tell me.
Betcha wish you hadn't looked.

the outcome

Break away, break away, stare down the man
Telling you what you can't do or can.

He lies through his teeth and would rather forget
But you must remember and act upon it:

when you first learned what words really mean –
the power they have to make the truth seen,

mutable, breakable, words can reveal
our inner demons, looming and real.

Come again, come again, Little Poet Lost,
stand tall when the world tells you its cost.