‘When editing…..’

 

….crafting and shaping my work, I normally do three things.

Take the original written work, and re-write it by hand on a separate page. This way I get a feel for the line, and its natural inclination either to drop, or keep going from the same source of energy – both rhythmical and emotional.

I type it up, trying to keep as close to the original format as I can. I  often find, that if a poem comes out naturally one way (three-line verse, block verse, couplets etc) it will almost always need to be contained within this format even after the editing stage is ‘complete’ – or as complete as it can be.

Finally, I  transfer or ‘lift’ the poem to a new visual format, creating distance and providing me with a cleaner editing eye. One of these formats is a printed PDF, the other is a blog space.

Today among other things, I’m working on this compact piece. I’ve brought it here to ‘lift’ it, and for the next two days only, will be sharing it with you. After two days I’ll take it down.

Crossing (x1)

This stable
feels like a boat. Its roof rocks the hollow.
There are windows
on every side, concealed,
though it feels like a heart
exposed, if hearts are water.
There are horses hanging
like oars. The darkest pool
touches at their eyes,
where their small lives are suspended.
My hands are trembling. I imagine
they’re wings, that my mind could navigate
the darkest crossing,
if crossings are these waters, or that drowning field.
And by field, I mean
the resting place of my daughter,
the other world that keeps her
before I wake her.

Crossing (x2)

This stable
feels like a boat. Its roof rocks the hollow.
There are windows on every side, concealed,
though it feels like a heart
exposed, if hearts are water.
There are horses hanging
like oars; the darkest pool
touches at their eyes,
where their small lives are suspended.
My hands are trembling, I imagine
they’re wings, that my mind could navigate
the darkest crossing,
if crossings are these waters, or a drowning field.
And by field, I mean
the resting place of my daughter,
the other world that keeps her
before I wake her.

©Helen Calcutt

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