head full of emptiness

The blank page. Every writer faces it, the emptiness, the whiteness, the little cursor blinking a sign of “Nan nana boo boo,” tongue hanging out, laughing at the poor schlub sitting opposite. The blank page usually excites me because I come to it with an idea or an image and fill it up quickly, but lately my head has been full of emptiness and the blank page mimics my brain inactivity.

In college I wrote poetry, a lot of it. Then, I was on deadline for classes and workshops. I had a poem due every other week for 5 years. I got good at forcing out the images and words. But with poetry, the blank page is not as frightening because a poem does not need a storyline, cohesion, or even a clear beginning, middle, and end. John Ashbury and John Cage have certainly shown that poetry can be a quagmire of words splashed about. But, I never liked these language poets. I liked Yeats, Shihab-Nye, Gluck, Collins, and cummings. I read and used images. My poems were simple and about the everyday. I never published anything and have only ever given 2 readings. The blank page didn’t scare me in poetry, the rejection did. I worked alongside some brilliant poets. I touched poetry celebrities. I never quite measured up and so I stopped writing poetry. I let the black page raise its voice.

I don’t want the blank page to win this time. I’m putting myself on a deadline and you need to keep me honest. I’ll post 4 times a week, about something or nothing. I just need to write it. I don’t care if you read, just bug me and make me do it.

And thanks.

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