Wednesday, April 06, 2005

The Talkin' Non-Poetry-Writing Walking Month

So I’ve decided, for National Poetry Month, I’m not going to write a poem all month long. That can be considered either my protest of such a government-inspired travesty or a gift of mine to the same.

Instead, I’m walking. No, not from the blog, but outside. Spring has finally come, and I’d like to dedicate myself to walking at least a little each day. And with a companion such as Thoreau the past 9 months (for those few who may not know, I’ve been blogging Thoreau’s Journals) I’d like to see what, if anything, I’ve learned.

To this effect I took a little walk by the Newburyport waterfront this morning. Besides the sun shining brightly and a stiff wind from the west, though, I found no flashes of inspiration. I was alone, all but for a man taking a smoke break by the river. Same as me, I guessed. I’m talking a horizon break, sucking in the endless Atlantic through the mouth of the Merrimack and exhaling Powow Hill, upriver, in the west. But then too soon, we both must return to our workaday worlds.

But tonight, after work and dinner, I walked along the road besides the Merrimack. The red-wings brought the river marsh alive, although I couldn’t see them at all. Down by the river I cramped my brain trying to think great thoughts. But I only felt like a boy in front of his great grandfather, and wondered, like that boy would, how old is this river anyways. Back home, I heard the peepers in the wetlands. From a solitary peeper on Thursday, they’ve become a symphony orchestra. (Or as Van Morrison sang, from a whisper to a scream.) And they haven’t hit their crescendo yet.

And I certainly hope I’ve only just begun too.


Mark Lamoureux said...

Thus you will be walking the walk, as it were. Experiencing one's environment, I think, is what poetry, and therefore "National Poetry Month" are all about (well, to make a huge generalization).

I also feel a considerable amount of ambivalence toward the concept of "National Poetry Month," much in the same way as I do about things like "Black History Month": these are things we should be aware of and consider all the time, and should be a part of our intellectual framework. Why ghetto-ize such things to an attributed "month?" Black history or poetry do not cease to be relevant for the rest of the year...

son rivers said...

I like that: walking the walk. As for NPM and the such, exactly. It's a marketing concept only. Selling poetry to the masses like deodorant for the soul. Asking for Mayoral endorsements. We need to cultivate the separation of poetry from the state, not encourage its marriage. The next thing you know the GOP will discover the poetry voting bloc and W will be quoting poets at every opportunity. The rest is just too frightening to explore.

Lorianne said...

What a wonderful idea! Here's hoping for a whole month-ful of wonderful walks!

son rivers said...

Thanks Lorianne. Here's hoping the weather stays springlike too.