Only half-awake on this sofa,
The ticking of the clock becomes
The nervous tapping of fingers
As excuses spill, like loose change,
Out of the pockets of the accused
And down its cavernous cracks.
My first poetry workshop was today and I really think I'm going to enjoy it. The leader wasn't some crazed hippy wearing natty jumpers, shouting inane things like 'BE the poem! FEEL the poem!', but that's okay. As entertaining as that would have been, it probably would have gotten annoying very soon.
I actually tried to do a meditation class at Uni once and we had a woman like that running it. I should have known it was going to be a failure because everyone was wearing loose-fitting clothes and I turned up in tight jeans and huge sunglasses to make myself feel cheery. The woman kept yammering on for the whole session in an 'away with the fairies' kind of manner and I got really irked and never went again. I don't think I'm the 'Ommmm, inner peace...' type.
Anyway, the leader of the workshop was actually this very nice, youngish bloke who I'd already had for one of my first year seminars. He explained to us that we'd learn about a different technique every week and then have to write a poem based on that. The poem at the top of the page is one I wrote for our very first exercise, which was simply meant to be a poem about two objects. I got the sofa and clock idea lodged in my head and simply had to get it out, as I couldn't sleep with it in. My poor boyfriend Tom is sound asleep next to me while I tap away at this blog entry, as now I still can't sleep! I'm sensing this is going to become a recurring theme in the coming weeks.
What I'm nervous about isn't getting back into the poetry writing process again, not at all. That bit is bloody good fun and I sort of need a creative outlet, what with the stacks of essays an English Literature degree demands. No, what's making me really nervous is having my work critiqued in front of me by my coursemates. Over the internet is no problem really, but it's the idea of having to look at someone while they tell me what they think is good and what isn't that's giving me the creeps.
I'm equally nervous about having to critique my coursemates' work in front of them as well. Give me a Blake poem, a Plath poem etc. and I can talk about it until the cows come home, but I'm worried I'll clam in front of the actual author. In fact, part of me thinks it'll birth some inter-workshop grudges. 'Oh, you're the girl who thought my caesura seemed unnecessary. BITCH!', that kind of thing.
Of course, I realise I'm being silly. I realise such criticism will only help me improve and therefore my own criticism will be beneficial to others and all that, but still, I reserve the write to be freaked out while my boyfriend sleeps soundly. The jammy sod.