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On Silliness and Tickling Muses

Okay, I couldn’t help myself. The first line of today’s poem for NaPoWriMo just stuck in my head. Yes, I really wrote a poem about my cat’s butt.

Have you ever had something leap out, almost fully formed a la Athena, and plonk itself on the page? Poem, story, drawing, or whatever? It’s not often, but it’s such a rush when it happens. So distracting, in fact, that I couldn’t write about anything else until I shook the whole thing loose from my skull (tweak to Shakespeare and all).

I’m not even saying it’s a good poem; that’s not the point. And admittedly I probably spent way too much time looking for silly ways to rhyme “fur” and “rear” and “interpose” (cat owners, you see where this is going). But somehow the goofiness of the topic meshed so well with the rigid format of today’s NaPoWriMo prompt (a terzanelle). There’s just something about that kind of structure that fires me, not so much to rebel as to show off: “Look how far I can tickle the medium!”  Hey, I ain’t proud, but it sure is fun.

It happens with painting, too. I was getting ready for my first “real” art show – a local art crawl – and suddenly I was painting like a crazy woman, with plans way too ambitious and eventually with knots in my back and neck reining me in a bit. But I created a few really good things I’m not sure I could have done if I were told, “Paint a really amazing such-and-such, and take all the time you need.” Instead it was more like: “Whoa! I can paint one of these! And a pair of these! And, ooh, I’ve never tried painting this!” (And depression? My brain said, “Hah, we don’ need no steenking depression!”)

Anyway, it’s a sunny day, and Athena’s taken off somewhere, so I’m just happy to have gotten my silly poem out to share.

And what next? Back to the studio!

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