Some months I only write one poem. It’s the poem I send in an envelope to four other poets; it’s our round robin. If you know a few other poets, I can’t think of a better motivator to keep writing poems than a round robin by snail mail.
I go through periods when I write a poem a day. When we travel I don’t write as much. When we are home, I go for a walk and then write. I have a calendar of inspirational quotes that I’ve had for twenty years. I write about the day’s quote, what I saw on my walk, or what I see out my window or what’s on my mind.
I don’t always write a poem; sometimes it’s an essay. I start my pieces in longhand in ink on yellow, lined pads, writing straight across the page. I leave empty lines between my words for changes. When I think I’ve got something, I take my messy sheets to the computer and type the lines. That helps me see if I have a poem nugget or an essay. If I do have a poem nugget, I work with the words, condense them, and look for better ones. I leave it for a day or two, coming back to improve it and create line breaks.
I’ve had poems published in chapbooks and in on-line magazines. One editor said my poem was exactly what she wanted. Joy!
I belong to the Wyoming and Arizona Poetry Societies and attend workshops. I buy books of poems and the craft of writing poetry, and I use the library. I read poems alone and aloud with my husband. Poems read aloud take on new meaning.
We like poems because there is so much in so few words.