Cross training

Sometimes I find it useful to cross over to a completely different artistic medium.  What I am thinking about is attending poetry readings, and then trying my hand. Yes, writing a poem. I’m not a writer, so it stretches new muscles in my brain. Or maybe that is supposed to say, creates new neural pathways. At least I like to think so!
I went to a poetry reading by Jennifer Hetrick last week, sponsored by Berks Bards. I ended up writing this poem when I came home.
I sent it to Jennifer, and she put it on her own blog! I’m thinking this was like a mirror image of a mirror image of a mirror image . . . . The link to her blog is at the end.
Poem for Jennifer
by Martha Ressler
I came to hear poetry about working.
I expected a grizzled time worn poet, face like leather, muscles knotted, hands scarred.
Instead stood this young woman, long light brown hair and so thin she could have walked out of her boots.
She read her poems, tentatively.
She had listened to workers, for hours.
I could hear their voices as she read.
They talked about their tools, their machines, their co-workers, and their losses.
They spoke of their boredom and fleeting moments of joy.
I remember the one about the worker delighted, briefly, by a mother and baby bird, flying up in the rafters.
I remember the poem about the sewing machine operator whose factory closed down.
Everyone moved on, but the women left the secrets they’d told, the laughs they’d shared, in a tangled knot of threads on the floor.
I liked that the young woman with long brown hair stopped reading, once, to reach for a pen.
She wanted to correct “sewing” to “knitting.”.
“I got them confused before I learned the difference.”
She learned that and so much more. She learned about extruders, swing shifts, piecework versus hourly pay, and the difference between warp and weft.
She listened and absorbed, asked questions, and then listened some more.
Then she spun those stories of boredom, routine and joy into her silken word threads.

2 thoughts on “Cross training”

  1. I loved your Poem. The words flowed so smoothly and told a such a vivid story. Thank you for sharing it!.

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