A Blessing for Writers
Tonight I had the chance to speak with a group of writers in Colorado. The glories of Zoom!
(There are some glories. Truly. Because, without Zoom, there is no way I could have made it to Colorado by 9 pm ET after putting in a full workday here in my tiny Tudor on the east coast. Thanks to virtual travel, I was able to share a little about how to move forward in your writing life when you’re feeling stuck, uninspired, or unsure. That was a blessing to me.)
At the end of our time together, I invited the group to write a “blessing for writers” — a prose poem — and to share it with their larger association at some point. I also invited the group to share their “blessing for writers” prose poems with us here. And now I’m inviting you.
I’ll start, with the poem I read to the group…
A Blessing for Writers
For you: a string, silken, sometimes. Sometimes narrow, twined, sometimes wide. A ribbon, if you will, midnight velvet when you need it. Crimson. Turquoise as a southwest sky. Occasionally ivory. The line of it, slipping through the open palm of your hand. In the box where you keep what no one ever thought was yours, look for opal, tiger-eye, sapphire. Quartz of common hue. Jade, beryl, topaz. Ruby tucked in gold. Whatever your fingers want to bead and turn. Make a string of all white stones on a day when you are feeling endless and pure. Choose a single ebony when you mourn, or feel alone, or want nothing more than the unadorned strength of it. For you: the will to keep it all right where you can easily find it. Pull it out. The string, the ribbon, the gems, the stones. Make something. Know that it is yours. Put it on. Somewhere on this side of the world, I will be holding up a mirror for beautiful you, wearing your beautiful string of words.
— L.L. Barkat
Compose Your Own Blessing for Writers
I’m inviting you to compose your own poetic blessing for writers, too.
Try using language that holds together image-wise — sights, sounds, textures, fragrances, tastes from specific categories like food & drink, clothing, a craft, a geographic region, architecture, or something else.
Alternately, try using a form like cataloging and let that be the thread that holds your poem together.
(Cataloging is repeating opening and or closing phrases of your poem lines. Just when it starts to feel too repetitive, you can stop the catalog for a line or two before beginning again.)