At some point in grade school or junior high, I was invited to start writing poetry for some language arts assignment. I loved the medium, and when I was in high school, I started keeping a notebook with me to write down my thoughts in that form.
A few times I thought that the poetry was musical enough that it worked to set it to music. But mostly, it was just a way for me to put down my thoughts and feelings in a short form.
I had the idea when I was nineteen or twenty to try some improvisations with another musician, and I think I made a flyer that I posted at my former high school, to see if there were any students that wanted to collaborate. That was how I met Erik Hamrefors. He played the cello and the viola, and we got together a few times and made a lot of recordings of me singing and he playing. You can find some of my favorite pieces that we recorded here.
When I relocated to Germany, I met Anke Ames, who played the accordion, and we did a few improvisations as well. We used some other poetry which we hadn’t written, and I found it was harder to relate. It’s not like the poetry was bad – it’s just that it wasn’t ours.
A few weeks ago, I had an experience where I needed some words to guide my next composition. Late at night, poetry started flooding my thoughts, and I wrote it down in my notebook.
I was pretty pleased with how the music turned out, and since then I have been thinking that it would be good if I had some more words to help guide my next compositions.
Digging from within seems to work the best, so I jotted down some of my most anguished thoughts in my notebook last night. It’s maybe best not to publish them right now, but I feel like it’s helpful to me, like it’s helping me process my most desperate feelings.
There is this one poem I wrote back in high school which I still have a copy of at home. Basically, it is a description of the frantic search for the key to inspiration. “Where is the key?” I sometimes still feel this way!
Writing on this blog has helped me stay focused. Despite all the other things going on in my life, I try to create something every day, and it helps me be happier. It’s unlikely that everything I create will be great, but I figure that as I keep refining my craft, I will still be pleased with many of my creations.