freewrite on my ride home

They come and go -
The singers, the buskers in the subway
One day a girl and her accordion, short
short skirt, black knee high socks
accordion expanding and compressing
like a pair of plastic lungs in a 5th grade
science experiment, open for all to see.
One day a group of four men, dressed
in black tuxedos, tapping their feet and
snapping their fingers, telling everyone
they will be saved, they will be saved.
One day a man with pale skin playing
the bagpipes, his tartan skirt looking
out of place in a sea of jeans and slacks --
was he dreaming of rolling hills and crashing surf
while he stared blankly ahead at weary workers
rushing in their evening commute?

They come and go, their music fading fast
while I slump in my seat, counting train stops.

* * *
Confession: This month has been very blah, writing-wise. How do you unblock a writer's block? I'm trying, writing notes such as these, hoping that the words I've written here and there will inspire another piece. But its tough, I've been playing around and reading other people's blogs instead.


  1. What you have done here is exactly the right cure. It feels like an awesome poem to me! I especially love:

    "One day a girl and her accordion, short
    short skirt, black knee high socks
    accordion expanding and compressing
    like a pair of plastic lungs in a 5th grade
    science experiment, open for all to see."

    And then the men in tuxedos singing about being saved. What a great contrast.

    I do know what you mean about feeling that "blah" writing time, though. I think we all go through those cycles. What you're doing is exactly the right thing. Keep writing, no matter what. I sound like a preacher...ha! ha! But that's what helps me. I also love to read The Poetry Collaborative
    I read them all the time, and their subject prompts and poems in progress are very inspiring.

    Your freewriting is beautiful. Very interesting characters. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I think your freewriting could definitely be counted as writing.

    I especially love the last stanza. The music fading, the counting train's too perfect.

  3. Odessa, I was going to say the same thing Julie said. Just keep observing life like you're doing! this poem has so many lively, upbeat descriptions, with a peppy tempo.

    I know what you mean, I've been a little listless this month. I've found that writing sestinas helps, because my mind is engaged with the puzzle of the form.

  4. Sulat lang nang sulat. ;) Freewriting helps a whole lot, I've heard, too. In my case, I turn to music. A lot of my poems, especially early ones (when I was still fumbling around for the discipline in writing cohesive poetry) have been written while listening to songs, anyway. Sort of a conditioning, I guess, that works to my advantage now. I know you're a music lover, too, (remember Jason Mraz) so, well, I'm suggesting. ;) Cheers.

  5. Yes, I loved the part Julie highlighted. I've noticed more and more in collections I buy that four or five lines can constitute a poem, why not? And the rest has lovely rhythm. I had a very bad period over Christmas and early new year. The kids were home from school and I got out of the habit of writing every day. Even now it feels a little forced (mine that is)......just keep on pushing, I guess, it's what I do.

  6. I like the observations in this piece, it has a nice flow to it and the unexpected man with the bagpipes

  7. Keep writing. Even a little every day helps. And keep reading, which it sounds like you're already doing.

    I'm in a bit of funk myself. Just keep writing. You'll get through it.

    I like your freewrite. Good start.

  8. thank you all for your comments! i know this sounds cheesy but i'm truly grateful to have known such talented group of writers. you guys are the best!

  9. I loved your poem!
    You can call the muses though...perfect recipe for getting over the dreaded block.
    Going outdoors and finding a lonely spot in Nature, listening to music, going to a museum and appreciating art...Anything that shakes up boredom.
    Keep going and don´t give up. Ever.
    All the best,