The Poetry Place

Open Studio

A writer's blog

Trevor Millum, Teachit poet in residenceThe aim of the blog is to try to show the process of writing. It's a bit artificial because you can't reproduce all the thoughts and crossings out that take place either metaphorically or literally.   

However, it might help to show students that poems do not spring fully-formed onto the page. 

Previous blogs are archived: see the list at the right of the page.  Quite a few have been inspired by existing poems (by Edward Thomas, Duffy, Heaney, Armitage and others) and there are also villanelles, sonnets and lots of light verse.  I enjoy this - and it keeps me writing!

A1 Sonnet - final version

Wednesday, 19 November 2014 17:19:19

Wednesday, 19 November 2014 17:19:19

There are workers on the A1 (M)

Widening the road to Leeming and beyond.

All the old certainties are gone:

The exits that we used to know – don’t look for them.

Anxious though we are to get from a to b,

A 50 mile limit tames us all;

Punto and Porsche are made equal

For the rear of Eddie’s truck is all we see.

Beyond the hills of earth and warning signs,

We glimpse the fields and look ahead in vain;

Here are dumper trucks and pipes and cranes

And cones and cones and cones in two-tone lines.

All this to satisfy our need in coach or car

To be elsewhere instead of where we are.



A1 - final couplet

Friday, 14 November 2014 03:35:46

Friday, 14 November 2014 03:35:46

Moving words around until I found 'coach or car' satisfying. 'To be somewhere else instead of where we are' was in my mind for a while. But would 'To be elsewhere instead of where we are' be better?

All this to satisfy our need in coach or car

To be somewhere else instead of where we are.



Wednesday, 12 November 2014 16:13:34

Wednesday, 12 November 2014 16:13:34

 

I think the repetition of cones is justified. 

 

Beyond the hills of earth the and warning signs,

You glimpse the fields, look ahead in vain;

Here are dumper trucks and pipes and cranes

And cones and cones and cones in two-tone lines.

 

So, having made some decisions on the first eight lines (below) I need to think about the closing couplet.  (I already have, of course. It would be madness to get to this stage without some idea of where I'm heading...)

 

There are workers on the A1 (M)

Widening the road from to Leeming and beyond

All the old certainties are gone

The exits that you used to know – don’t look for them

Anxious though you are to get from a to b

A 50 mile limit tames us all

Punto and Porsche are made equal

For the rear of Eddie’s truck is all you see



A1

Monday, 10 November 2014 09:10:45

Monday, 10 November 2014 09:10:45

 

 Trying to get the next lines to work. I want to get the sense of impatience - or of trying to look ahead without being able to...

 

Beyond the hills of earth

You glimpse the fields

You imagine the welcoming that awaits  (no, this line of approach abandoned)

But here are pipes and cranes and dumper trucks

Miles of cones, cement

 

This is better -

 

Beyond the hills of earth, the warning signs

You glimpse the fields, look (up) ahead in vain

But here are dumper trucks and pipes and cranes

Miles of cones, cement

 

Of course, lines is better than miles and forms a rhyme with signs:

 

Beyond the hills of earth, the warning signs

You glimpse the fields, look (up) ahead in vain

But here are dumper trucks and pipes and cranes

Something something and cones in line(s)



Wednesday, 5 November 2014 16:56:17

Wednesday, 5 November 2014 16:56:17

A flurry of activity - a couple of rhymes came along easily:

Anxious though you are to get from a to b

A 50 mile and hour limit / restraint / restriction tames us all

All are made equal

Punto and Porsche

And the rear of Eddie’s truck is all you see

 

But the next section is going to need a lot more work:

 

Beyond the hills of earth

You glimpse the fields

You imagine the welcoming that awaits

But here are pipes and cranes and dumper trucks

Miles of cones, cement

All this to satisfy our need

To be somewhere else instead of where we are



A1

Friday, 31 October 2014 09:14:23

Friday, 31 October 2014 09:14:23

Things seem to be back to normal, so,,, resuming my musings about roadworks on the A1:

These were my first jottings:

There are workers on the A1 (M)

Widening the road from to leeming and beyond

Something something something gone

The exits that you used to know – don’t look for them



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