How Poets Write Poems

It starts with a window,
preferably of the Georgian hung sash variety,
for the Poet is nowhere without one.

There may be other things involved, too:
a laptop, or some paper and a pencil,
or a Remington Home Portable.

And a pipe, of course.

Equipped, the Poet sets his* face
to one of Ruminative Contemplation
to survey the world through the window.

The Poet stares. The Poet gazes.
The lips purse. The brow furrows.
The eyes narrow and then …

    a leaf floats down from a tree,
a snatch of birdsong is caught,
a postman rummages in his bag,

and the Poet is off!
The image, smell, sound
is plucked, examined, cross-examined,

until a memory is stirred …

    perhaps the pattern
on a childhood picnic blanket in a Dorset field

    or the trace of that first kiss
in a grimy bus shelter in Wolverhampton

    or the crumbling headstones
of a Cumbrian church graveyard in October

which, in turn, provokes
larger – far grander – thoughts
about Life and Death and Beauty

and Hope and Truth and Loss
and God and Loneliness and Self
and Terror and Forgiveness

and so it continues
until the day slips softly into darkness
and the people who have proper jobs,

in factories and in offices and in shops,
walk past, carrying their bags and lives home,
and glimpse the Poet, silhouetted with pipe,

through his Georgian hung sash window,
and think to themselves
that he really needs to get out more.

 Please note that Poets are available in all genders

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