25 February 2013

A walk in the woods, an old house site

When I wanted to find stories as a kid, I walked into the woods. Not because people lived there, but because they had lived there, and evidence of it was everywhere. There were bottles half buried in the dirt, rusty moonshine stills beside streambeds, lumps of crumbling bricks beneath the leaves, patterned indentions in the ground, old wells. There were certain signs I came to recognize that indicated a house had stood there. English ivy and daffodils are pretty common. Last Sunday, I wandered around in one of Duke's forest tracts and found this old house site.

It leaves a lot up to your imagination...

11 February 2013

Where poems come from

a highway in northern Michigan, October 2012.

I recently heard an interview on WUNC with poet Gibbons Ruark.  In it, he said that there are only two kinds of poems: love poems and elegies.

At first it struck me as accurate, but I think that I might add wonder to that list. I remember days as a kid walking around in the woods and being inspired to write by what I experienced there. The poems were mostly made of observations and questions. The back yard is a fascinating world when you know little about it – you just see the colors and want to save them.

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