On Writing

Poem 101 – Suburban gulls

Suburban gulls

two gulls wail on afternoon wind
pulling my eyes & ears to the tender blue sky
curiosity moves my mind – why are they here?
these parts are roofs & concrete cars & grass
fishless water hides under tightly closed tarps
nothing here for a frenzy

more screams pierce the calm
are they warnings or desperate love songs?
perhaps this pair is on an anniversary trip
a monogamous movement for food & fornication?

soon only their siren echoes remain on maple’s 
plump red buds on daffodil’s pouty lips & the
sassy blue jay puffs his feather-fat chest – relieved


Thank you to Kim, Sarah and Irene, the three creatives behind All Write in Sin City, a podcast highlighting writers in Windsor/Essex and beyond. We met on Zoom for a talk about ‘thimbles’. Their questions were poignant and thoughtful. Made me think and dive deep into my writing process and creative motivations. I appreciate this very much! I’ll let you know when the podcast will air. Thanks gals!


Firstly, I still get nervous before any virtual event…even when I’m simply attending. My does a flutter and I feel shy…but I guess I felt that way before attending live events too. In any case, there are things I think about from what I wear to how I sit to what’s in the camera shot. I pay attention to what is in my background, and make conscious choices about what can be seen. I try to include books and/or art in the shot. Colours are important to me. I had some flowers (thank you, Lin!) that I included in the zoom yesterday because I wanted something ‘alive’ near me. I wore a yellow dress with white polka dots, though no one would know it was a dress because I never stood up! In any case, I wanted my clothing to match the ‘spring’ feeling the flowers, I hope, gave off. I had my book, some tea (in a swag mug, of course!), and other things in arms’ reach that I could use for props if needed. I did end up showing some of the things I had around me…a thimble, some sketches, and hand-written versions of drafts of poems. I chose several poems ahead of time and marked them with sticky notes. I put mascara on my eyelashes and lipstick on my lips. I Nair-ed my mustache and plucked my eyebrows. I wore jewelry and had my funky new glasses around my neck. A round light was stuck to the back of laptop to help brighten my face. I’m still working on how to get the glare of out of my glasses/eyeballs which at times, may have me sitting in weird positions in an attempt to keep the glare away. I’m also still working on where I look. My eyes want to look at me! The voices in my head screaming at me to stop moving around, to smile, to sit straight…blah, blah, blah. It’s hard to not look at yourself on these calls! So, I did my best to look at the others on the call, to look into the camera and when I was reading, to look up from the book into the camera. Bottom line: I do think about what I see in the view of the screen.


Here’s a link to ten poems about Spring.

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