An apology doesn’t seem necessary, but sometimes I like to work at explaining my failures. I thought the Writer’s Digest Poem a Day effort for National Poetry Month would be a good thing for me to join in on, but I should have considered it more carefully. (I wanted to understand why some things get a day, some a week, and then poetry gets a month. Puppies only get one day, and if I were in charge, I’d give puppies a whole month and strip poetry down to one day with the side benefit of only needing to write one poem each year in celebration; however, I think it’s not that way because puppies don’t need much help in being lovable, but poetry sure does.)
I didn’t start PAD until the fourth day, clearly demonstrating my propensity for procrastination, but I thought no problem, I’ll make it up. I made up day three. I’m not going to belabor the stats, but I only missed one day over the next several days, and I was justifiably proud of my accomplishments, but here I am on the 18th, shamefully declaring my failure.
For those who don’t know PAD, each day you get a prompt of some sort, usually one word, so it feels wide open, unlike some other prompts. I’m not much of a prompt guy, but I love good photography as a prompt. Basically, I like prompts if its wide open, and photos are about as wide open as you get. The other thing about PAD is that you are supposed to post your poem as a comment on that day’s prompt post. By the end, there are often over 300 comments, maybe 100 or 150 poems.
Each day, in the later part of the day, I would add my comment, my poem, and I would go through and read the others. I discovered fairly immediately that there is a cliquish community involved in this PAD thing, and if you’re in, people will respond to your comment poem with flourishes of high praise, regardless of how crappy the poem is. Then I discovered your poems are supposed to be funny. I may be funny, but my poems aren’t. Finally, I discovered that it is preferable if your poem has a solid rhyming scheme. Bottom line, I was destined for failure right from the start, but I might have had a chance if they had invited me into the clique. My poems were way too fucked up, and I thought I might be better going to school and try again next year, especially if I decide that rhyming for rhyming’s sake or for silly humor isn’t horseshit.
So this is why I gave up PAD, but I’m not going to give up blogging, at least for now. Just deciding to give up and write this confession fueled my poetry fire and I wrote a couple intense ones with no prompt but a heavy bout of misery. I do hate myself when I fail. I can barely live with myself, but I’m not going to let PAD destroy all of my April.