In the UK we celebrate National Poetry Day on the 7th of October and the theme this year is choice. I feel I have to celebrate somehow, because poetry – because it has done so much for my mental health in the past few years, both the reading and the writing of it (however infrequently the latter might have shown up). Here is a very rough first draft written in a spurt of creativity (32 poems in 5 days) during an unforgettable journey to Provence. OK, admittedly it’s not a very celebratory poem, but it’s been so long since I last posted one, I’ve forgotten how to do it properly!
Cialdini’s Science of Persuasion: The Principle of Consistency
Ask for small commitments first, then, when the large requests come, they will find it impossible to say no.
Last week I cleared out boxes
loft-bound for the longest time.
cards and letters
from the days when e-mail felt transient
international phone calls expensive.
Too few of yours: even then
you favoured silence as a method.
Sheet after sheet of colourful stationery
with my giggly, high-pitched scrawl,
careful to place no demands at all
while reasonable placed a noose around my neck.
Frog in water, you settle to boil
concession by shrug
you end up with a life adjacent
paths choked by weeds.
I never saw a destination without
wondering at the journey towards it.
Genuflection along the road to Calvary.