to my muse

I can see you there, restless,
like a ghost. You dance a shadowy
tarantella through the nether regions of thought.
A delicate balance – a tightrope act.

Any time my sores seep you turn in my direction
and urge my fingers over letters,
dancing scorched landscapes through
spider-blackened memories.
You whistle in minor keys.
And now you hide from me
nestled in a smudgy cloud
of nothingness.

read more feed me ,
you whisper.

I read books to feed you.
I read poems to feed you.
I open my dictionary to random pages
and read.
All to feed you.

It’s bizarre, I know, but without you
I am strangely empty.

Like a dog I want to call you in,
and strap you to my side
but when I set you free and read more
you show up in these lines.

Brenda Warren 2012

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Process Notes: My muse disappeared, so I decided to write to her. It is reading that oils her magic.

This piece was written for The Sunday Whirl using the words in the underlying image.

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34 thoughts on “to my muse

  1. Loved this poem, Brenda, totally relatable for most writers I think. I tend to have a love-hate relationship with my muse…she tends to be a bit of a diva sometimes and asks for more attention. But what would I do without her?

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  2. The muse sounds like a small child playing hide and seek- long after you are done with the game they keep hiding and calling. I may have been a bad mother but I remember just letting my children stay hid every once in a while. Thanks again for the prompt. teri

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  3. Brilliant, simply excellent and on the point too.

    Maybe you should get a male Muse. When they misbehave, you just threaten a certain part of his anatomy and the Muse becomes a choir boy. Also he does a good job of keeping you warm on a winter’s night 😉

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  4. It worked really well, Brenda, when you write about the muse like that. I like to strap her by my side as well, but what you say is true, set her free. I like the line ” nestled in a smudgy cloud
    of nothingness.” As if nothingness will smudge us like a blob and writing will make us sharp and clearly defined if nothing else. It’s much like that as well.

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  5. I thought it was delightful that you in the midst of your MIA muse manage to maneuver these wonderful wordle words into a windsong the uplifts. So apparently you were a-mused … and in the feeding we were charmed … as usual 🙂

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  6. Brenda, I love “read more feed me”. I didn’t get it at first, but then it hit me. It’s perfect for a muse; so simple, and yet so loaded with meaning. And I completely relate to the second to last stanza. Thanks.

    Richard

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  7. She is a fickle lass. Now she knows you will talk to her she may want more conversations! I love most the dance metaphor. I enjoyed a pause while imagining our muses in various dances with us. Congratulations on conquering.

    margo

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  8. Thank you all sharing your thoughts. I just read through them—it feels good to have readers, and like minded writers who feel similar joys and frustrations. Thanks for being here. You make my day.

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  9. I like your last comment in particular Brenda – I’m forever saying, “the muse wants what the muse wants” but I too, find her hiding or MIA at times and it’s extremely frustrating … this response was excellent and quite right, perhaps that’s what is needed – attention!

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  10. Brilliant, Brenda! I love, love love this poem! It’s so true! I feed my muse the same way and sometimes she smiles on me and sometimes she … doesn’t. She’s a fickle girl, this muse of mine!

    Your first stanza is especially wonderful: “I can see you there, restless, like a ghost. You dance a shadowy tarantella through the nether regions of thought. A delicate balance – a tightrope act.” Restless like a ghost and shadowy tarantella and delicate balance are all perfect. I personally loved the words this week!

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  11. Hi Brenda, I am glad that your muse showed up. You used a good technique to summon her. Mine did not show up today. I think she is now dancing in the field you mentioned on Friday. That’s okay. She can rest just this one Sunday…and she did have quite a workout earlier this week. LOL.

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    • Thank you, Mary. Yes, it worked for me. I’m worrying about April. I want to join in the poem a day, but worry about the time. I did it last year. That’s where the Whirl was born. hmmmm…. poem a day in April….

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