The next poem

The next poem

by Harry Calhoun

You fell asleep in front of the TV
and when you woke after
I had made next morning’s coffee.

You started awake and pointed
at the TV and asked me where
the next poem was coming from.

And I said, “I’m not sure what you mean,”
because you so often talk in your sleep.
But I’m pretty sure the next poem

won’t come from the TV. May come from you,
from me, from some mixed-up mess
of the two of us, with a little Autumn rain

for a bass line. Not the TV. You drifted off
rather than watch the tube. The next poem
won’t put you to sleep or to rest.

At least that’s what I hope.

Author’s Comment: I know that a lot of people don’t react well to poems about writing poetry, but hell, it’s what we DO. Also, I think that this one, and a lot of my “poems bout poetry,” is only incidentally about poetry and more about the events that go into making a poem happen. My wife really does talk in her sleep, often after she’s drifted off in front of the TV. The poem progressed naturally into an explanation of what might be the making of a poem, then ends with the wish that the poem will be more interesting than the TV.

Bio: Harry Calhoun’s articles, literary essays and poems have appeared in magazines including Writer’s Digest and The National Enquirer. Check out his online chapbook Dogwalking Poems and his trade paperback, I knew Bukowski like you knew a rare leaf. This year, his poems were published in the book The Black Dog and the Road and his chapbooks, Something Real and Near daybreak, with a nod to Frost. He edits Pig in a Poke magazine. Find out more at Oh, and another chapbook, Retreating Aggressively into the Dark, will appear on Big Table Press within the next month.

4 thoughts on “The next poem

  1. “some mixed up mess / of the two of us, with a little autumn rain” . . . what a nicely tender moment — almost a haiku unto itself — while simultaneously capturing the associative nature of poetry — the gestalt of the thing — showing us just how much experience and poetry are alike.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s