I’ve gotten off the track of life-long learning in the last few weeks, but I feel I learn something new every day. So, to get back on track, I wanted you to know I am trying to learn to write poetry. Now that’s putting myself out there to say something like that on the internet where nothing ever really goes away. But I have some help. I have the Enid Writers Club and one poet in particular, Jim Arnold, who is always trying to encourage me to write poetry. He has even gone so far as to write prose to show that old dogs can learn new tricks.
So, I’ve tried. The word tried should be all in caps. Here it is. Let me have it! Help me critique this thing of beauty (ha!). Lately with the weather I’ve had some inspiration.
The Oklahoma Standard
Redbuds glow fuchsia across prairies of cedar and wildflowers,
Rust cliffs ooze mud above emerald wheat and lemon-yellow canola.
But the colors of the prairie pale in comparison to the spirit of the people.
The Oklahoma standard is not just neighbor helping neighbor after a tornado,
But the never-fold spirit is the norm every day on every corner,
Bright as an Oklahoma prairie after a rain.
What do you think? I need to go back to school, right? I really don’t know much about poetry, there are so many kinds. I think this is free verse.
But as I said with the weather in the last few weeks – tornados, flooding, bridges and dams collapsing or being damaged – I still believe in the Oklahoma standard. We are a resilient people. We have to be. I came to Enid, Oklahoma from the bootheel of Missouri when I was seven years old. We came in the middle of a hot, dry August and mother cried as we pulled into town. Where were the green rolling hills she’d grown up in. Mom and Dad were from northeast Arkansas and hadn’t moved very far from home to Missouri. But they learned to love this place as I have.
So, wrote a poem. I’m a writer, that’s what I do. It is a good outlet for all the shock and awe I’ve seen lately. I have learned a lot in the years I’ve been on this planet and the most important thing I’ve learned is to pick yourself up, brush yourself off, and start all over – because you will fall again and again. And while you’re at it, help the guy next to you. It is the Oklahoma standard.
Help me with the poetry.