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i've been feeling a little lackluster, myself and after A Cup of Jo's Joanna posed the question, what inspires you, I got to thinking.

well, lots of things. but sometimes, all i need is a really great quote

or to pull a play off the shelf and read aloud the scenes i've ear-marked

so today i pulled down the books of poetry by jeffrey mcdaniel, the splinter factory and the forgiveness parade

now, i'm not often a big poetry person. but his words constantly have me high-lighting and scribbling and starring in the seconds after they've taken my breath away. his stuff certainly isn't for everyone: it's not traditional or flowery, but it's potent in a really satisfying way. 

i was tempted to type out every poem right here. but i don't have the time. nor, i'm sure, do you. so here are fragments and favorites brought to my attention by my trusty magic-marker arrows, marked from years ago.

...but I'm just a broken promise in a pawn shop,
and this is just a secret that happens to involve you...

...I don't wish I was in your arms.
I just wish I was pedaling a bicycle 
toward your arms...

...I'll start telling you lies, and my lies will sparkle,
become the bad stars you chart your life by...

...I was prepared to chase

after you and whisper you have beautiful
footsteps when the truth is you make
my toes tingle like the capital of Venezuela.
I know loving me isn't easy--the all-night

helicopter parties, the glow-in-the-dark
haircuts, but when I look at you

it's like praying with my eyes....

...I guess there's two kinds of women.
Those you write poems about, and those you don't...

...I'm sorry all the kisses I scribbled 
on your neck were written in disappearing ink, sorry

this poem took thirteen years to reach you. Sometimes
I thought of you so hard one of your legs would pop out

of my ear, and when I slept, you'd press your face 
against the porthole of my submarine. I wish that just once,

instead of joyriding over flesh, we'd put our hands away
like chocolate to be saved for later, and deciphered

the calligraphy of each other's eyelashes, translated
a paragraph from the volumes of what couldn't be said...

...Some days I miss you so much
I'd jump off the roof of your office building

just to catch a glimpse of you on the way down...

...I hate when people ask if she even knew I was there. 

The point is I knew, holding the one-sided 
conversation of her hand. Once I believed the heart

was like a bar of soap--the more you use it, 
the smaller it gets; care too much and it'll snap off

in your grasp. But when Grandma's last breath
waltzed from that room, my heart opened

wide like a parachute, and I realized she didn't die.
She simply found a silence she could call her own...


Jean said...

Wow, that is beautiful writing.

I love it when I have to slow down and read carefully, to understand and absorb and digest the words. It's so refreshing.

Amelia L. said...

this is wonderful.
thanks so much for exposing me to him.

becca said...

wow. i love the caracas poem. i just posted part of it on my own blog.

kSbl said...

very beautiful.

thx for sharing all these lovelies!

Carly said...

So I blog stalk... erm pardon, I follow your blog, and I have never commented. Poetry may do it for you- me I love to put on almost any good soundtrack and dance around my house full out as though it is my Broadway debut. Anything from Aida to Legally blonde. Which also brings me to you post about the newsies. What girl couldn't love a movie with almost a all male cast. I am pretty sure I could still do all the dance moves.

Disney has lost there touch, but they are trying to make a new drawn animation movie. Complete with an African American Princess.

Titled 'The Princess and The Frog' Here is a link to to official trailer for it. It may not quite be up to the 'Walt" level but it looks like they are trying!



Sorry about the super long comment.

Helen said...

If I read this again, I'm going to start sobbing.

brown eyed girl said...

Ooh, I'm definitely going to have to look that poet up. Great post!

sarah-lucy said...

I'm not into poetry, and I expected not to like this stuff...but WOW. i LOVED it. Thanks for sharing.

Lulu said...

Wow, those little snippets were great, some gave me chills while others made my heart swoon. I loved it, makes me want to go and read some more of his poetry.

Hanako66 said...

so beautiful

Katie said...

What beautiful poems!!! Thanks for sharing them!

RatalieNose said...


Sarah said...

so good. im coming to nyc may 30.....see you soon!

Diana said...

why aren't you published yet? this is gold.

Single Girl said...

Note to self: buy a poem book.

Meg Fee said...

oh diana, these poems aren't mine--i wish they were, but they're not

Elizabeth Marie said...

Oh wow...the excerpt about the helicopter parties...I could cry. So beautiful! I'm so looking this poet up. Thank you for inspiring ME! XO

Sarah said...


Marisa said...

Beautiful! My aunt is Johanna Day and she plays Barbara, the oldest sister. She started just last year and was previously in Peter and Jerry.
I like your blog lots :)

J. said...

Thanks for the post...I so needed someone elses words. Once again you took me to a different land:)

jess said...

i am not usually into poetry but those tidbits have my curiosity piqued!!

Alex said...

LOVE it...i too saw that Cup of Jo post and now I'm inspired to make my own list

Todd Vodka said...

Nice flows for a wayward icebreaker to bump into