Friday, February 6, 2009

Self Involved, A Tired Old Shack

This quatrain quite literally came from "I still need to get my quota and I have nothing to say". The poem is self explanatory as well as

Self Involved

I tried for a poem and wound up with a scarecrow.
The straw is scratchy and makes me sneeze.
I get frightened when the words don't flow.
Then I back up and write about that.


This poem came the next day, but I was still dragging. It was written last November on my birthday, when I turned 63. I feel a little like this tonight as my right shoulder gives me fits. But to give the circumstance its due, I didn't make this poem up from inside but from the photo on the blog site I was visiting. So it's a role play, a what if.

A Tired Old Shack

There's holes in my hide
And holes in my head to boot.
There's holes in my shoes.

I came to this tree
Hoping for shelter, no leaves.
It looks like hard rain.

I feel like a tired old shack.
Who knows what it was built for.


  1. I sometimes put off coming here, because I think I don't have time to do you justice, to read with enough care and attention. Then the posts build up. But in fact it's OK, because it means I sit down for a good read, and get properly immersed, which is even more rewarding.

    I'm always wary of bloggers thinking they should go into book form, and other bloggers encouraging them. There's something special about this medium, and the 'oh you really should put it in a book!' line is somewhat misleading, and missing the point. I would read your poems in a book though, and sometimes wish I could.

    From the time you first appeared, there's always been something about you and your work, I'm not quite sure why, that makes me think of the Robert Graves poem 'The Troll's Nosegay'. I don't know if you know it, or if my thinking of it is appropriate, but it tickles me all the same...

  2. Ooof. I can't breathe up here, lifted so high. Putting me in the category of Robert Graves seems extreme to me. But you lift me so gently, makes me think of the frog put in the tepid water in the pot that you raise to a boil so slowly that I just nap along for the ride...

    I am always glad for your visits, dear. I enjoyed your collaboration at qartsiluni and I heartily recommend that site. By the way, Mol is a blue lampshade girl to me, the color goes much better with her shine.

    Thank you for saying such nice things about books.

  3. yes Robert Graves indeed indeed....

  4. Robert von Ranke Graves was born in Wimbledon, London. His father was Irish and his mother German (the von Ranke name was to cause suspicion among some of his fellow soldiers that he was a German spy). He volunteered for active service at the outbreak of the First World War, aged 19, and went on to serve as a Captain in the Royal Welch Fusiliers, alongside Siegfried Sassoon, his closest friend during the war years. He was badly wounded at the Somme, and reported dead on his 21st birthday, though recovered enough to return to the front a few months later. He suffered from shell shock, or neurasthenia, for many years after the war and continued to be haunted by traumatic memories of the war until old age. Goodbye To All That (1929) is the most compelling and enduring contemporary prose account of the First World War. From 1929 he spent most of his life in Spain, and became one of the leading literary figures of the age. He was Professor of Poetry at Oxford University in the 1960s. His novels include I, Claudius, King Jesus and The Golden Fleece, and his writings on myth include The White Goddess and The Greek Myths.

    The Gorge

    Yonder beyond all hopes of access
    Begins your queendom; here is my frontier
    Between us howl phantoms of the long dead,
    But the bridge that I cross, concealed from view
    Even in sunlight, and the gorge bottomless,
    Swings and echoes under a strong tread
    Because of my need for you.

    by Robert Graves

  5. Well, not bad....not bad, I do have poems like that, but they don't rhyme...when I went out and checked, I noticed other things in other poems, the subject matter and such, but he rhymes in everything I saw. I see the rhyming point but don't feel it helps me much.

    You keep showing your stuff though, Ghost. This is an excellent choice of poems to show the similarity. And so Lucy is right but still, I doubt I will ever be a professor of anything.

  6. Yes Christopher.
    These two have the right of it without doubt. First. I see Lucy as the Queen of words.

    When I first encountered her work I was breathless. Then in a heartbeat and a turn around she seems so down to earth.

    Her assessments I find....( not that what I find is necessarily what matters to anyone but me) are impeccable.

    I have said all that to say. If Lucy says it ....I have to admit I am very likely to believe it to be so..

    Add to this fine company an absolute favorite Dancer , again of mine, in Blog Land. Ghost is one of the most articulate and intelligent beings I have met virtually. I wish I knew her in the other world.

    Reading her information on Robert Graves...well absolutely belong there kiddo. I am learning so much from you Christopher that I feel I should mention that also

  7. Wow. You all have knocked me absolutely sideways.

    As for me, I am just trying to get along.

    This is the first day I have got to this point without writing any poems since last August, so I wonder, is this run over?

  8. Just a brief respite I expect? A regrouping....? Just a bit of lifes shifts? What do you think?

  9. Well I have over 150 days to think about it before I run out of poems to post at two a day.

  10. :>)
    Love it!
    You are great Christopher...P

  11. Blimey, only got around to tracking here just now. That Linda's awfully nice to us isn't she! I'd better go and do something worthwhile to justify it!

    I don't know what it is about the troll; it's the way he conjures up those unbelievable flowers which completely knock the woman/the muse/life dead with astonishment, in spite of her being such a bitch to him... it just makes me think of how you write poetry, a power that seems to surprise yourself as much as anyone. I didn't mean you particulrly resembled Graves in your writing, though you might sometimes.

    Glad you like Mol in blue, I think brunettes are better in blue...


The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

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