Thursday, June 14, 2012

Draft Process: To Parse To Save, One Must State the Relevant

80º ~ a clear sky, bright sun, the breeze making itself known in the leaves, a cardinal calling outside the closed window, the new plants will need watering this evening

I woke up today, not with the sickly speaker in my head but with a question about the dictionary definition poems I wrote last week.  I had four and was wondering if I needed a fifth, for balance, as I imagined distributing the poems within the sickly speaker's narrative.  In looking back at the ones already written, I could see that I needed something that was closer to closure, something that made reference to the speaker's cure.  (Ah, it strikes me now that I could have looked up "cure."  Duh.)  I looked up "save" as that was the goal, to save the speaker from death. 

The first few words of the definition sent me directly to my journal and I hand wrote three couplets there, but I found myself turning to the computer more quickly than in the past, perhaps b/c I had the source material right there in black & white next to the keyboard.  The poem begins:

Deliver, rescue, or protect the body from the marrow,
............from the rising again of fever flush and sweat.

In the end, the draft is only six couplets long with the second lines all indented, so maybe my desire to move from journal to computer foreshadowed that, maybe my poet-mind already knew that this would be a short one.  Bizarre how that sometimes works.  I did manage to end on the phrase "carry out the cure," so the poem went where I wanted it to go, although I don't remember consciously trying to get there.

I also see that for perhaps the first time in the series I state flat out that the illness has refused all diagnoses.  Cool.  I guess that was also percolating away beneath the surface.

The title was a little bit difficult until the word "parse" jumped into my brain, then if fell into place: "To Parse To Save, One Must State the Relevant."

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