We've recently had some of our possession shipped over from Scotland after languishing in a loft for over 8 years. We thought we were going back, we still don't know. There were old letters and photographs, books like Richard Hugo's, Edwin Muir's and Sorley MacLean's Collected Works, a Scots Dictionary, my notebooks for my Italian and Scottish Gaelic studies. But one of the real surprises was a pile of old poems. I mean old, dot matrix print-outs from 1991-1996.
Most are crap, but it's interesting to see though my style has changed, but my subject matter hasn't. Two poems I'm trying to revive from this mess are on similar themes I've been working with lately: my exchange year in Norway 30 years ago and a trip I took island-hopping around the West coast of Scotland. My writing style has pared down a lot in the past 25 years. I'm having to cut a lot of extra words, description that doesn't do anything and sometimes focus the direction of the poems. We'll see if I'm able to make anything from them.
I used to write more third person, fictional poems which I don't really do anymore. And lots of miserable love/ falling out of love poems. And poems that sounded poetic but didn't say anything. I might try and do some free writing from the vocabulary or rewrite some of the poorly executed ideas. It really is a laugh to read over them and I'm glad I didn't throw them out. Like my journals from 35 years ago, I like to see growth and change and am not embarrassed about who I used to be, naive of course, but weren't we all.
I received three rejections on Friday evening in my Inbox, bam, Bam BAM. Not a nice start to the weekend. All three were from magazines I've tried before. One was quite a big magazine so I didn't expect to get in, but second rejections for the smaller ones smarted. But I dusted myself off and sent the poems out again. It would be nice to get a couple of acceptances before the end of the year, it's been a quiet few months. And I wait.