I’ve been writing a daily poem for more than six years. Many mornings, I find myself writing poems about my difficulty with writing poems and saying something new, one of my many obsessions. My poems are often an intersection of my history and today’s events. I hope to arrive at an unexpected insight.
The key that lets you inside
doesn’t turn the tumblers of a lock,
isn’t wood or metal, not something
solid you can hold in your hands, no
genie’s lamp or potion, no prayer
you can offer up or send down.
Art’s entrance might be the scent
of lilacs, baby powder, potatoes fried
deep in oil. The threshold’s access
is encrypted, changed daily, a code
to discover by tuning up, turning down.
Press a lever, hope a food pellet falls
down the shoot, though tomorrow
that jingle and canter won’t work
again. A magic word floats by
like dirigible or boondoggle
and there! You slip in and down
the water slide to sea, wet but not
cold, in the flow of what you came
to drink and spill, inhaling spray
and laughing. Stay in the water
while the surf’s up. No sea monsters
will drag you down except the ones
you conjure up. Just get it down.
© 2018 Joan Mazza
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