I used to write poems. Among my hundreds of posts there are fifty-odd, I think. Sometimes I stumble across one I liked. Not because it was “Poetry” but because it meant something or had a pulse. Which is to say, I’m no Ellen Van Neerven. So I don’t write poetry anymore.


This swaggering nebbish, occulted by reticence,

Ambivalent to all save the rare, volant sentence,

Shies from performance (that feckless adventure),

Declines approbation, craves constructive censure.

This reclusive archer, a’quiver his arrow,

The scope of his genius reducibly narrow.

Self-conscious at crossroads of Solitude, Loneliness,

Shrugs off discomfort, and goes about business.

Slips after his quarry ‘mong shadows, city-cut,

Obsessed by a vision, that vanquishing insight:

To be ineluctably alone in your memory

Achieved with mere words honed away ’til there aren’t too many;

Just enough to lodge splinter-like, begin subtle burrowing.

So he shoots and waits breathless, his own heart hammering.

Will his words be dislodged, though barbed with raw sentiment?

Too dull to pierce through, or too few to say what he meant?

Archer unnoticed; will arrow find mark,

Will you even notice if one finds your heart?

I’ll be standing nearby, and smile when you hum

The words of my poem to the beat of another’s drum.


Erik Kaisson, 2017

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