|photo by Vicki Windle|
Ideas typically appear when my mind is at rest; a relaxing drive, in the shower, before falling asleep at night, at 3:00 a.m. I call these ideas “nuggets.” They are small, dense, and fleeting. So, I pull off the road, hop out of the shower, or leap out of bed to record them.
Then a process, of sorts, comes into play. That night, the next morning, a week later, I begin. Sculpting, stretching, carving, and embellishing that nugget into a poem. I add possible phrases, and search the visual catalogues of my brain for relatable scenes. When words seem weak, or imprecise, I drag out my hefty Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, and trusty Merriam-Webster Thesaurus. A 3-D kind of gal, I write with quick-flowing ink pens on whatever paper comes to hand.
The next step is to weave these pieces into coherency, with much adding, circling and crossing out. I only move from ink and paper to the computer when the poem is nearly finished. Word processing makes those final changes easier.
My most recent mini-book, “Writerly," contains six poems about writing. Each written in its own place and time, the collection in this booklet illustrates what may be called my writing “process.”
I wrote “Paper” during a long airport layover. I had pulled one of those perforated ads from the center of a magazine. The other end of it was a plain white piece; perfect for scratching out a poem. Waiting for inspiration I held the paper to the sunlight streaming in the nearby window.
Only white until,
Held to the light,
Its mottled fibers glow.
The ink, therein, floats
On its skin
Drawing me in
The beginning of “Sometimes, Waxing” came to me around 3:00 a.m., as much visual as verbal. I woke up long enough to jot down the imagery in my bedside journal. Those random pearls of thought rolled around in my head for a couple of days. The muse pounced again, while I was showering, so I wrote the ending on the bathroom mirror with a lip-liner!
Sometimes, I am overcome by feelings I cannot name. So, I attempt to express them in verse, like this one.
Attempting to sunder
Layers of wounds
My spirit oozes
Art, and strives
Published in the Fall 2016 edition of WyoPoets, “On the Eating of a Poem That Aches,” began as a phrase which woke me mid-slumber. I recorded it in my journal. It made no more sense the next morning, but reminded me of an abandoned previous work. So, I dug through my drawer of journals, papers, and scraps to excavate the material to complete this one.
The painter strums music from color.
Musicians spin stories from sound.
I paint the scene in syllables.
The longest poem in “Writerly” is “Poetry and Pine Needles.” The Casper Writer’s Group meets monthly, but has a special gathering on the mountain once in summer. After the important business of eating and visiting, we spread out to write. Walking into the pines triggered memories from across six decades, and four states. The poem is published in the WyoPoets Winter, 2017 edition.
|Photo by Vicki Windle|
Inspired by a book-making workshop, I decided to produce a series of mini poetry books. One attempt at printing at home sent me seeking assistance from a local print shop. I write the poems, create the illustrations, and design the lay-out. After printing, I do all the folding, stitching, gluing, and such. Every book produced has been formed by my hands, hence my logo, “from my hands to yours.”
|Photo by Vicki Windle|
I currently have 10 different mini-publications, with concepts for two more. They are sold in Casper, Wyoming at Goedicke’s Art Supply and, through April 2017, at Art 321. You can also get them directly from me. I usually carry some in the car, nestled near my mismatched gloves.
Lynn chimes in
Haphazard, eh? I work in much the same way and prefer to adhere to the adage that "creative minds are rarely tidy." However Vicki puts the words together, I am a fan, and have been since the first WyoPoets conference I attended. I had the good fortune of sitting next to Vicki during the workshop, led by Echo Klaproth. I was wowed by Vicki's writing.
Which reminds me--WyoPoets is in Buffalo this year. April 28-29 and Colorado poet David Mason will be our presenter. For more information visit www.wyopoets.org. Hope to see you all there!
Bio for Vicki Windle
|photo provided by Vicki Windle|
As well as being self-published, her work is included in Weather Watch; Poems of Wyoming, in Blood, Water, Wind, and Stone; an Anthology of Wyoming Writers, and in some WyoPoets newsletters.
Vicki's poem “Haircut Day” won honorable mention in the 2015 Eugene V. Shay National Poetry Contest. View her art at facebook.com/frommyhandstoyours2016. To purchase publications or to schedule an appearance, contact Vicki on Facebook, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at 307-258-8829.