Birth Of A Poet

Some people are amazing. Kind, supportive, encouraging. Qualities that are in short supply these days so that when you come across them it really is like a breath of fresh air or soft, sweet rain falling on thirsty grasslands.

Gabrielle Bryden is one of those amazing people. I have gotten to know her over the last year or so and the more I know, the more I like. A gifted poet, writer and educator herself, Gabrielle is also one of those writers who actively seeks to support other writers.

Gabrielle knows I have a hankering to be a poet and that I struggle with the ability to do so. Imagine my delight the other day when she took my post Thoughts Of Rain and turned it into a poem.

Rain on glass

Rain on glass

forever fascinating,

days remembered

watching the city washed clean,

magic show of light and shadow

filling up the world,

apostrophes

clear, yet fully formed,

stirring of memories

sweet and sour.

I remember three people, walking away in the rain,

umbrellas cutting through the wind and water,

visible long after the bodies that held them had turned to smoke.

I remember three people who walked away in the rain.

I don’t remember three people walking back.

Endings in the rain,

days of moving and distance.

Rain taking us to places sunlight cannot,

rain falling in fringes,

casting jagged reflections.

Streets are opaque,

our shoes glisten

as we move slowly along.

We are never still in the rain –

fingers on our shoulders propelling us,

walking on water and asphalt and glass,

fugitives from our own stories,

remembering the smell of it,

the taste,

memories crystal clear –

the air has been rinsed clean.

Diving headfirst into it,

our paths blackened but defined.

The rain falls

dropping beneath chimneys

and sweeps of red roofs

and white letters on shop signs,

falling like trailing twigs from trees.

Then our hearts, full of weariness and dust,

are washed clean, glinting, unmarked.

And we remember all the things we love.

I cannot believe it is something I wrote because it does sound like poetry. I don’t know how Gabrielle did it, but I love it. I don’t think it signifies the birth of a poet but I think it does show that someone with the right eyes and ears can take the bare bones of something and improve upon it well beyond what the writer originally imagined. That takes skill. Thank you, Gabrielle. You are stupendous and remarkable in every way.

And because I know how much you love our feathered friends, Gabrielle, I’d like to dedicate the photo of this little guy to you. I saw him walking home the other day. Isn’t he a cutie?

Writers supporting other writers. That’s what it’s all about for me….

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12 thoughts on “Birth Of A Poet

  1. It’s a wonderful poem! But if it’s your language and your images and thoughts, then it’s your poem. your friend may have acted as an editor – which is very important- but you are the poet. Think the collaboration and support between writers in all genres is crucial. There is too often competition And it’s fantastic that you found such a generous colleague. Hopefully, blogging etc has also helped you find other people like her who help your writing life — just as I have found .

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  2. This is a wonderful poem! I love rain and I love how your friend has taken your words and shaped it into this beautiful poem. An excellent collaboration, that’s for sure.

    I’m going for a re-read now.

    Happy Weekend, G :<)

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  3. What a wonderful collaboration! Shelly Lowenkopf once did that for me and led to my having a separate poetry blog for a couple of years that alternated poems with explanations on aspects of poetry from some books on writing poetry I got. I found Mary Oliver’s A Poetry Handbook a great beginning. I eventually gave up writing poetry — it’s just not my calling, but I learned a tremendous amount about appreciating poetry from it as well as lessons to apply to my prose, like sound and rhythm.

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  4. SUE – I just can’t associate it with something I write. I’m not used to writing anything that resembles poetry. I agree with you 100% about collaboration. It’s so important. I don’t like it when writers are jealous of or competitive with other writers. We’re all looking at the world from different perspectives and we are all in this together, so therefore we all have something to offer one another. Blogging has REALLY helped me do that. Thank you for your very valuable comment, Sue.

    TIPOTA – It’s all down to Gabe. She is a marvel!

    GERALDINE – Can you believe it? Never in my wildest dreams did I think it would turn out like that. I am so pleased!

    SQUIRREL – I have to read that Mary Oliver book. There is definitely a different approach that needs to be taken when writing poetry as opposed to fiction. I’m not sure poetry is my calling, either. My mind just won’t seem to fit into the format of it – but it is encouraging to know that if I worked hard I might be able to improve in that area. Collaborations rule in many ways!!

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  5. a lovely poem. Gabrielle did a great job. but then, I’m not one to really judge these things. I just like how the words are put together.

    p.s.
    The church from my Sweet Saturday post is at 5th avenue between 50th & 51st street in Manhattan. It is called St. Patrick’s Cathedral. It is the biggest one I’ve seen in New York so far anyway.

    have a sweet day.

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  6. GABRIELLE – You really are very good at editing/turning something into poetry. An alchemist. I had fun with it too. Isn’t the little Kookie cute???

    CRAFTY GREEN – It was so cool of Gabe to do this. She is a gem!!

    LISSA – You write great poetry yourself so you can certainly know what you’re talking about. Thanks for letting me know about that cathedral. It really is stunning!

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  7. What an awesome thing for her to do for you! It’s nice to see such a generous spirit. Hopefully we will see more of this!

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  8. CATHY – Gabrielle really is very generous. I woukd love to do more things like this with her. She is uber-talented!!!

    DAOINE – I am still blown away by the fact that she did it. It was a lovely gift on a cloudy day!!!

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