Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Sharing Journal Entries

In journal workshops some people enjoy sharing their entries and read often. Others never do. Either way is OK. Usually once somebody reads something--and we all get to enjoy the meander from the writer's particular perch--others want to read too.

Sometimes it's like watching a scene in a new movie or looking at a bizarre landscape. I particularly enjoy hearing folks read about everyday objects. (I give prompts about them.) What people read can change the way I look at amd feel about stuff: my kitchen sink, a watch, backyards. My world view stretches and I like that. Poetry does this too.

Here's an example.

I abhor coupons and am always annoyed when the person in front of me in line uses them--especially when the check-out clerk has to call a manager because something is WRONG with the coupon--as if being a coupon isn't wrong enough! Having read the following poem earlier this week (check the archive) in poetry daily I have a new relationship to coupons. Phew.


The cashier leans forward
to examine the expiration date.
Here's my mother's squinting face

in silent concentration and memory,
adding up my father's paychecks,
subtracting the bills,

scissors and newspaper close by,
my mother's thrifty face
as hard and bright as Formica.

Tim Skeen
The Southern Review
Volume 41, Number 4
Autumn 2005

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