where are the words?

Although I’ve never made much of an effort to publicise this blog, over the years it has slowly acquired several hundred followers. Knowing that there are people who read it makes me feel more of a responsibility about weekly updates, and if I haven’t any ideas or haven’t got time to write anything, I’ll try at least to find a bright flower photo or something, just to reassure people that I am still around.

gazania flower

I feel guilty, then, when I fail to post anything at all, which is what happened last week.

I’ve been going back and trying to collate old poems and I’ve come across several I scarcely even remembered; this one seems particularly appropriate given the lack of recent words on the blog. So, here’s a poem for National Poetry Day:

Where are the words?

Where are the words
I need?

Like a spendthrift
I have squandered them,
scattering them on the green lawns
of forty summers,
frittering them 
on trivialities.

I look in books,
in dictionaries and lexicons,
but they are blank as my notebook:
empty of inspiration.

The wind has carried away
all the words,
borne them on the warm air,
like so many seagulls.

Like a prodigal,
I am left destitute,
my tongue, dry,
licking at stale crusts.

(And, yes, some readers will realise that “green lawns/ of forty summers” is an indication of just how old the poem is!)

Author: don't confuse the narrator

Exploring the boundary between writer and narrator through first person poetry, prose and opinion

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