One Year Sentence

by S. K. Kelen

Dog tired deep into the morning
awake first thing after a restless night
when snatches of dreams where there were words
that might have been right for the sentence
there’s no getting past it — that one sentence
the sentence that’s been driving you mad for the last
year or so when you get up every morning
and go down to the basement study
switch on the computer
and see how the sentence is going—
it’ll be a great sentence
and will lead to somewhere
more interesting that’s if the sentence
ever gets finished, it’s at a new drafting stage—
there was the time the computer crashed
and the file with the sentence disappeared
all day, all night re-writing the sentence
(sometimes sitting in the backyard at dusk jotting notes
or a trip to the coast where the ocean can give
something of its energy), the sentence returned
to be worked on then down to the basement study
cleaning up, making the work place
just right to get cracking on the sentence
the headache from worrying about the sentence
should help you concentrate on writing—
once that one sentence is right the rest of
the book will almost write itself
and the opening sentence will illuminate
like a door opening in the morning;
there’s no getting past it—that one sentence
never seems nearer to being finished—
in the morning you get up after a restless night
wrestling with a verb
and go down to the basement study
switch on the computer
and see how the sentence is going—
it’ll be a great sentence when it’s done
and will lead to somewhere
more interesting that is, if the sentence
ever gets finished, it’s at another drafting stage
the trees will know what happens next
how later the day will grow more
solemn and serene.




S. K. Kelen's picture

ABOUT THE POET ~
S. K. Kelen is a widely published Australian poet. His most recent books are Goddess of Mercy (Brandl & Schlesinger, 2002), and Earthly Delights (Pandanus Press, 2006)


Last updated July 19, 2011