writing (u)nder duress


The breeding habits of chimpanzees,
the wonders of the birds and bees
give life to dreams of half-sleeping writers,
writing the story of cowards and fighters.
Without much strength or excess force,
from our essays, we divorce,
leaving our thoughts to important things
like sex, and music— slides and swings.
Of Bassanio, we do not care,
and Shakespeare’s works we cannot bear.
And yet our pens continue to scribble-
Good luck to that who reads our dribble.
We fret not over Hercules’ beard,
or some God that Caesar feared,
because as far as we’re concerned,
the Day of Work should be adjourned.
Restless motion sifts through our scene.
People wave from behind the screen.
And though discontent in our scribing cells,
we continue to scribble! Still! Still!
Is that a metaphor, simile, or allusion?
Is this character smart or under delusion?
We backspace rapidly when we use foul words,
like unrelated thoughts on Angry Birds.
If the point still evades, we count to ten…
and then scribble,
scribble,
scribble,
again.

 

_______________________

u

 

I actually like Shakespeare when I’m not researching him.Β  What’s something you like until you’re forced to analyze it?

44 thoughts on “writing (u)nder duress

    1. Oh gosh, food is a great example. Once you look to closely into what you’re eating, or why, or how… life gets weird. πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜€ Thank you for reading!

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  1. Great poem! Interesting question too – What’s something you like until you’re forced to analyse it? It goes both ways doesn’t it? Sometimes upon analysis you gain a greater respect for something, other times it just feels like hard work. The latter is especailly true of poetry, and the likes of Chaucer and Shakespeare. Words can be like music, they don’t always need a deeper meaning to be beautiful.

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    1. πŸ™‚ That’s just it… I love the music of Shakespeare. In terms of the intent or meaning… eh. I could do without. πŸ™‚

      And you’re completely right… I find that science is like that for me, in reverse. A butterfly is amazing, but when I understand the sheer miracle of how it comes to be and how brief and fabulous it’s life is… well then, I’m doubly amazed. πŸ˜€

      Thanks, Kate!! (How are you?)

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  2. This reminded me of an “adult” Shel Silverstein poem… If that made any sense. It was fantastic!

    I love Mark Twain stories until I’m required to study it. Sophomore year ruined Huckleberry Finn for me (although I still do love the story itself).

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    1. Thanks, E.! I actually get that a lot… even the Peek review that Dave got of his blog, stumbled across a little snippet of my book and said, “Kinda Shel-Silverstein-esque”, πŸ™‚ I consider it a compliment! πŸ™‚

      Mark Twain is one of my all time favorites! I also opted for any other book so I wouldn’t have to analyze him, and I’m so glad I did. πŸ™‚

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  3. I was a Creative Writing major in college, after having been homeschooled all through high school and missing all the training in how to analyze literature. When I got into college level classrooms, the kind of analysis they asked me to do was daunting, and then within a year, it was fabulous. I loved every second of it, even picking apart the meanings and metaphors of the incredibly enigmatic Shakespeare.

    The classes I couldn’t stand however, were the music appreciation courses. I listen to music 20 hours of the day, as background noise, or something to give me energy after I gave up caffeine, or something to relax to, or just something to dance to. I don’t care about the melody half as much as the lyrical content. Having someone demanding that I pay attention to the tonal quality, ruins it for me.

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    1. πŸ™‚ I have the opposite experience, almost– it was the music theory where I learned to really appreciate picking stuff apart. For books, I was always of the camp, “just let me read!” πŸ˜‰ Of course, your love and study of deep analysis is probably why your writing packs such a punch. πŸ™‚

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  4. English class “taught” me how to hate so many things that it’s hard to pick just one. But for here, I’ll go with Les Miserables, The Hobbit and, not to be a copycat but….Shakespeare. My absolute favorite is Much Ado About Nothing. So glad school didn’t ruin that for me!

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    1. Much Ado About Nothing– I love that one! I also love the Merchant of Venice, Comedy of Errors, Twelfth Night, Macbeth, etc etc. I also love The Hobbit & Les Mis… thank goodness I never had to analyze those in class. πŸ™‚ Thanks for reading, Elizabeth!

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  5. Oh i need to ask you as you do something ive been trying to achieve your social media is all up in a neat box at the top on your side bar. How do you do that and for it to click through to each medium, is it something just to do with your theme? thankies in advance … mine are scattered all over i wasnt sure how to do that and woohoo yours are colour matched to your theme too lol..did you make them?

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    1. πŸ™‚ Yep, I made my social media icons. They are individual images, all individually linked to the various sources using a text widget. Because the sidebar width is basically set, I went to my theme settings, saw the dimensions, divided it by 4 and made them the appropriate size.

      Some themes are more flexible than others when it comes to colors. Since I’m handy with image editors, I just make the changes as needed– though in this case, I was gifted with the CSS upgrade and went wild with it. πŸ™‚

      Here are some icons that you’re welcome to:
      https://rarasaur.wordpress.com/2014/04/22/free-social-media-icons/

      And here’s instructions on how to use a text widget into an image link:
      https://rarasaur.wordpress.com/2013/08/12/generating-randomness/

      I hope that helps, and if it doesn’t enough– just email me. hello@rarasaur.com

      xo!

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      1. oh wow thank you so much, your a real whiz at graphics, those are soooooo pretty. I now need to work out how to get them in to a near bar on the side. So you put four images in to one widget and linked all up individually? Perhaps I should read the other link lol

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  6. Um Rara, that was beautiful! Honestly gorgeous. Raw talent there, gf.
    I like being a student so most things weren’t totally ruined when I was forced to analyze them. However, writing papers about any subject made me want to die. I liked learning, just not writing papers. And now I write for fun. Who would’ve thought?

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    1. Thank you, Lily, you’re so sweet! I liked school, too, actually… it’s so strange that I had a miserable time studying Shakespeare, though. Perhaps it’s because I read him casually first and enjoyed it? Who knows? πŸ™‚

      I’m glad you write for fun, because you’re awesome at it! πŸ™‚

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  7. Food big time, like adding garlic to ice-cream or chocolate or over analysing sheep or Forrest Gump ..or understanding nonsense verse, that is why it is non-sense, already perfect. loved your poem, thanks.

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  8. I love music but then learning to play a piece is hard work. Having to pick apart the sounds and work out how to make my fingers and lips replicate them is not fun. Once I’ve learnt the piece however, then it’s back to being a dream.

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  9. Rara, that isn’t fair you make writing about duress sound lovely and calm and without remorse. You have such a lovely talent. Take care, Bill

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