Poets know that the first encounter with a poem is entirely emotional and sensual.
A poem is never a thought to begin with.
“It begins as a lump in the throat, a sense of wrong, a homesickness, a loneliness…”, said the great American poet Robert Frost.
A few weeks ago I found myself scribbling a little bit about grief. My attempt started by evoking painful emotions from imagining the loss of two people I love.
I wrote it as an exercise for the Dance in Conversation Writing Club.
What happened then, blew my mind.
Two loved ones died in my imagination, and somehow sadness stayed with me overnight. It was an energy that went beyond myself, I know now.
Next morning, one of the two friends who inspired the poem, out of the blue, found herself saying aloud: ‘I am ready to die’. An overwhelming sense of peace came to her in a second.
The same morning, the other friend went down the stairs to have breakfast. And she said at the table: “I am ready to go, mum. I am okay if I die”.
None of them knew about my poem, let alone my feelings or that energy I was evoking.
I only connected the dots, in wonderment, when talking separately to them a few days later.
Sheer coincidence, you may say. Wishful thinking on my part, if you want. But I believe there is a mystery here.
I choose to believe, more than ever in 2020, that we are more connected than we realise, and that we touch each other in many more ways than we can comprehend.