The Reading (a poem)

The January 10th prompt in The Daily Poet by Kelli Russell Agodon and Martha Silano, is to pick a letter of the alphabet, and accumulate a list of at least 25 words starting with that letter, then ‘use at least 15 in a poem about something that does not start with that letter.’ Since I did not write anything on Saturday, and today’s prompt did not spark my interest, I tackled this one today.

The list of words I came up with: temptation, text, tunnel, therapist, talk, tears, tarot, train, table, TV, thermostat, tape, tree, today, Tuesday, twin, thermos, telephone, throw, theatre, tombstone, testify, Thursday, trapped, three, Texas, there, talent, truth, think, trumpet, thunder, trap, travel, time, tradition, transit, together, triangle, thought.

I mixed things up further by writing about my experience at a poetry reading on Sunday.

The tension mounted
as my train of thought derailed
I told no one where I was going

I tried not to think too much about it
telling myself to just breathe
and let the truth of my words tell the story

I listened intently to those who spoke before me
as they testified in the cadences of tradition
tying together the threads of past, present, and future

Then my turn came
I trudged up to the front, took out my three sheets of paper
and swallowed

I felt my throat tighten slightly
as the words somehow tumbled forth
but I kept my pace steady and strong

Time seemed to want it both ways
the seconds hung there, suspended in air
while the minutes simply disappeared

Soon enough…I was done
I walked back to my row, and sat in my seat
my face flushed red, I sighed a sigh of relief…

(12 January 2015)