This is Not a Post

I thought about writing a post, but I’ve been busy writing poems.  Sorry, I can’t really share them yet, but they are the reason I haven’t really thought about what to write for a post today.  

You see, I’m taking a poetry class. It meets once a week and the weekly assignment is to write a poem about a picture.  Technically that’s called, ekphrastic poetry.  It sounds simple, look at a picture, and then write a poem.  Well it kind of simple, but as I’ve always said, “There is nothing as complex as simplicity.”

You may quote me on that or buy the teeshirt.  No, I’m not selling teeshirts, but if I was, this would be one of the sayings I’d use.  On second thought it might make a better coffee mug – which I’d use for tea, but that doesn’t matter.  In either case, I’ll not be doing a production run of either.

Now there might be one or two of you who are wondering why I signed up for a poetry class.  After all, I wrote a poetry book, post poems here and have stacks of poetry books so what could I possibly learn? Likely there’s a joke here about old dogs learning, but I’m a cat person and cats just don’t learn anything.  The why is one of those vague answers where I say things like, “to improve my craft,” or “to synergistically connect with like minded poets in a generative setting with an eye to uncovering the basic genesis of metaphor and imagery,” or something equally pompous.  

The real reason is more like, “I need a little push to actually write stuff,” and “I’ve always wanted to write ekphrastic poetry.”  The class is on-line, so I don’t have to drive there and they take credit cards.  I have taken a class from this teacher before so even better.

Well, I’m signed up and taking the class.  I’m always amazed at how long the writing process can be.  The actual part of writing a rough poem is about 20 minutes and then three days to edit.  One day you put a comma in and the next day you take it out. On the third day you delete the whole line.  I’m amazed that I even manage one poem a week that I don’t find totally hideous.


What is it with writers – we’re our own worst critics and often just can’t see the good in our own work.  Which is another reason for doing class – the workshop time.  It’s great to get feedback on your work that is honest and constructive.  This is the real reason for the workshop.

I have thought about what I might write about for a post and I’ve even thought about changing the way I write these blog posts.  Normally, I just sit down at the computer on a Sunday afternoon and write stuff until it resembles a blog post.  Then I print it out and Heather proofreads it for me.  If it’s even close to making sense without too many red marks from her pen it becomes a blog post.

The final editing is often done while the pizza is in the oven so things like meaning, insightfulness and even relevancy are often just left out.  Take this week, I had a really cool idea for a blog post about the YouTube channel I’m thinking of creating or the ideas I have for dealing with the drought.  There’s even this really cool post I’m thinking of about how to make millions creating teeshirts with funny sayings.

None of those are likely to happen anytime soon because of the poetry class. I could change how I write these posts – you know, actually do an outline, research, write a draft on Wednesday, edit on Friday and then schedule it for a Sunday post.  Heck, I might even have something insightful or possibly even something well written for you.

Yeah, not happening.  Likely I’d just end up with a computer filled with half written posts and 100 browser windows open for research.  I’ll just admit right now, that if it wasn’t for the pizza in the oven and the timer in my pocket, you’d likely never get a post.

Which brings me back to the good news, bad news on the poetry class.  I expect to write a number of poems because of the weekly deadly so that’s good.

Bad news, the pizza timer is only set for 16 minutes so my regular Sunday posts just might get the buzzer before they’re done.

About Andrew Reynolds

Born in California Did the school thing studying electronics, computers, release engineering and literary criticism. I worked in the high tech world doing software release engineering and am now retired. Then I got prostate cancer. Now I am a blogger and work in my wood shop doing scroll saw work and marquetry.
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30 Responses to This is Not a Post

  1. I totally get it! Unless I have registered for a marathon or half marathon or 10K in the future, I’m really good at coming up with excuses as to why I can’t run today (not warm enough, not cool enough, it’s sprinkling, I’m tired, yada, yada, yada….) Poem away Andrew!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Baydreamer says:

    I like t-shirts and coffee mugs. 🙂 And have fun in the class. There is always more to learn.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Debra says:

    I think taking a class is always good for pushing forward a little! Good for you. I hope you’ll be sharing some of the poems you’re submitting. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Happy writing and all that other stuff… 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I chuckled at your description of editing — I empathize completely about the comma that goes in one day and gets deleted the next. I also find that not looking at my work for a while is an essential part of the process. It’s amazing how a few days’ distance can change what I thought I’d written. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Flojo says:

    Love that you are taking classes. And would love to read more of your poetry. (I have your book.) T-shirt ideas are fine, but why don’t you give us a blog start, and we’ll finish it! Clear out your draft file.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I see a poem post coming soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Dave says:

    Reconsider the t-shirt idea. Something like, “Ask me about ekphrastic”. Wear that one and you’d make a lot of new acquaintances. Great word!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. That all sounds perfect, Andrew. I have taken classes for the same reason–to inspire–though I loved the pompous reason.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I love classes. I am always taking classes online to improve my artwork. I think I will be doing that until my dying breath. There is always room for improvement, I feel, and getting another’s perspective (teacher, online readers, classmates, etc.) is always helpful. I even find that posting my photos and blogs to the screen helps me see things differently than when on my desktop. I am excited for you. 🙂 I look forward to your posts as you progress. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Whatever keeps you writing! (And entertaining us)

    Liked by 1 person

  12. River Twin says:

    Agree with every word of prose here 😁

    Liked by 2 people

  13. jfwknifton says:

    If poetry class is useful and helps you, then you should go. But if you feel you are getting little of any value from it, then you will perhaps need to rethink.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. SusanR says:

    Keep taking those classes. You never know when you might gain a new insight, learn a new approach, etc. Nobody knows everything.

    Liked by 2 people

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