Maybe the conditions aren’t right

I push my chair back,
get up,
grab a cookie,
pour a glass of water,

I sit back down,
adjust the light,
let my fingers rest lightly on the keyboard,


I turn on some music,
jazz, then pop, then classical,

I sit back down, frown at the computer,
think about walking my dog,
think about dinner,
think about why I can’t think,

if I just sit still,
maybe I’ll grow some shallow roots,
enough to hold me in place ‘til
something beautiful sprouts
from my distracted mind.


It doesn’t take much for a tree to take root,
a scant amount of soil, moisture, sun,
and the process begins,

it might not survive
past the cold days of winter,
but tries valiantly,
even in the worst conditions,
to become a tree.


I sit back down,
let my fingers rest lightly on the keyboard,
and begin.

Photo by Susan DeGraaf

5 responses

  1. A perfect ode to the absence of a muse. Funny! It’s a blah kind of day in our upside down world.

    1. Maureen, my friend’s photo was my muse for this poem. That brave little sapling in the gutter was quite inspiring.

  2. Beautiful poem about the process of writing a poem! I like this insight into what it’s really like to write, perhaps starting with “the shallow roots” in place. Perfect words.

  3. You continue to inspire me, Rita.

    1. Thank you! All we can do is move forward together.

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