I’ve never participated in a poetry reading before. Even though I’ve sung in front of audiences in my youth, the thought of sharing my original poetry in person immediately starts the internal flapping of butterfly wings. Sharing behind a screen isn’t so scary.
Well, a friend of mine heard of a local poetry night taking place last week, so she encouraged me to sign up. Her exact words, “You should do it!” So I did, but not without jumpy nerves.
There were 27 poets, different ages, even some young voices which was fabulous. I prayed that I wouldn’t be the last reader because we all know the effects of anticipation. Instead, I was second to read, which was a little nerve-racking in itself, but at least it was over fast. According to my friend, I did great. And even in my mind, I thought I had done well, maybe not stellar, but well enough for the first time. I didn’t trip over any words. I didn’t sneeze or fall into a coughing fit. I stayed focused, and afterwards, I received some “Beautifuls”, which I believe is music to any artist’s ears.
Irregardless, I’m glad I finally did this, another box checked off the list. Listening to the others read their original poems or poems written by another author was also wonderful. This event turned out to be an enlightening experience.
Now, for the sake of trying something fun and different, I’m sharing an audio of the poem I read that I recently recorded. I’ve posted “Castanets” before, but I’ve made small revisions since then.
I also can’t help wonder if most people think their voices sound strange when they hear them recorded. I know I do. Nonetheless, here goes…
Stepping outside, I stroll down the
quiet road with my lab on my left,
his gait as graceful as a galloping horse
in slow motion.
Squirrels raise their sleepy heads
because of the early hour.
The sky appears to be coal black,
but when I turn the corner, watermelon pinks,
corals, and lemon yellows take center stage.
My camera doesn’t do justice.
Then I recall my son saying, “Enjoy the moment.”
I slip that device back in my pocket.
To my right, salmon-colored roses
flaunt their fragrance and I am intoxicated.
Passing orange poppies,
their stems flutter with excitement,
eager for the sun’s ascent, and in the distance,
silence sings its serene ballad.
As the tempo of our pace speeds up,
a breeze joins us,
and the leaves on the trees lining the lane
sway in rhythm as though dancing a waltz.
Jowls flap, he smiles with brown nose
set in overdrive. The sun’s gentle touch
adds a glimmer to his copper coat.
I pause, bending down to his level,
fingers stroke shiny, silky fur,
his eyes close, contented from contact.
When we move again, his nails on the asphalt
mimic the clicking of two sets of castanets,
and in seconds, I realize these observations
are what life is all about…
I hope you enjoyed…
Lauren Scott (c) ❤️