Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Poetic Flow

Poetic Flow

“Go with the flow.” Good advice. 

But these days I am feeling more stuck and dammed than moving and fluid.  (Dammed, not damned. We are all blessed children of God.)

A moving stream, a rising tide – they flow.  Flowing, we accept, receive.  And often in flow we are fed – water flow brings all wet critters a precious gift - dinner.  Monterey Bay has two high tides and two lows every day – dinner served often and richly.  To be fluid and flowing is to be fed.

Meditating helps, with an image of flowing water, ocean motion.  Maybe I can ride out this storm of uncertainty and fear.

Prayer and walking are other fluid actions - they help burst that dam of fear and powerlessness.

I am also reading poetry, taking time to seek the gentle rhythms of verse, another slow, wet, moving practice.

I wondered, “Are there poems about flow?”  Look at what I found - this poem “Flow” written on a napkin at a bar.  Poet Bob Makela collected  “Barstool Poems” after a lonely night at a San Francisco bar. He and his roommate were having trouble working up the courage to speak to women.

“We were a couple of wimpy guys who had no guts to get up and talk to the women around us,” Makela says. “So I took a pen and a cocktail napkin, jotted down the title to a poem, slid my friend the napkin and said, ‘Write a poem to fit that title.’”

Soon their creative juices were flowing. The pair was pleasantly surprised by the outcome.  “We met all the women in the bar that we had wanted to meet, but didn’t have the guts to get up and talk to,” Makela says. He has published several volumes of Barstool Poetry and created a more creative, fluid way to make connections, via poetry.

Poems do lubricate, lighten, loosen.  Pick a title - Flow, Tide, Wave.  Let the rhythmic waters wash over and though you, lubricate you.  You might make some new friends.  You will certainly be un-dammed.

Stay wet, my friends.

I post these ocean devotions every Wednesday here and on Facebook.

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