As I sat down to write this morning, I discovered a funny thing – a stricter poetic form actually helped me organize and work with my thoughts. I’m not sure I like today’s poem – a commentary on yesterday’s school shooting – but I think I wrote better than I would have had this been a freeform poem or even prose. And oddly, it gave a sense of import to the words in a way I would have missed in other kinds of writing.
My heart is broken. Once again, it seems
cruel tragedy soaks into every pore,
my body heavy as my heart and mind.
Attempts to understand are fraught with rage.
I cannot grasp the cruelty. What is it
that hardens human hearts to love and grace,
that values coin and power more than life?
Too many deaths, too many angels made
by hatred, greed, and vice.
…………………………………………….. The prophets knew
that change required more than thoughts and prayers.
They named the sins and warned of our demise.
To loving folk: with tired, tear-filled eyes
I say we must continue to resist,
to never doubt the strength of one small voice.
For one meets one and two joins in with two,
and soon a chorus louder than the hate
will start to change the world – because we know
it truly is the only thing that has.
Postscript: As you have sussed out, “Px3” is shorthand for “Poems, Prayers, and Promises”…
One response to “Px3: sorrow and frustration”
“A stricter poetic form actually helped me organize and work with my thoughts . . . I think I wrote better than I would have had this been a freeform poem or even prose.”
This is true for me over and over with visual art. When I give art exercises I create rules. Even arbitrary ones help (“Pick two colors to work with, no more or less”), because something about working within the strictures of form inspires creativity.