In 2017, I started a “Why I Write Poetry” series of guest posts. I’ve already received so many, and I hope they keep coming in (details on how to contribute below). Today’s “Why I Write Poetry” post comes from Candace Kubinec, who writes, “I was a dreamer, not a writer.”
Candace writes and dreams from a comfy chair in Western Pennsylvania. Oh, she has had a few poems and short stories published here and there, but the joy, for her, is in the writing.
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Why I Write Poetry: Candace Kubinec
Well, the short answer is, "I don't know."
I was that child with her nose in a book. The girl who created imaginary worlds in her mind, but never scribbled them on paper or kept them locked away in a diary. I was a dreamer, not a writer.
I received no writing encouragement or accolades from teachers or parents. I didn't know I could write and was happy reading the words of others and keeping mine to myself.
A college English course was the clincher. One of my papers was used as an example of how not to write. That sealed the coffin on any wisp of writerly dreams that may have been swirling inside me.
Until one day...
However, the wisp would not stay confined. It showed up in a young mother's journals and work related articles for industry newsletters until, many years later, it finally found release in a Poetic Asides April PAD I somehow stumbled across. That first poetry challenge was what pried open the lid of the box where my words had been hiding.
Poetry is elemental – like oxygen. From birth we breathe – in and out, our hearts beat to a primal rhythm. It is inside each of us.
Children learn by rhyme. Old folks remember through rhyme and rhythm when language fails them.
Somewhere, in between, caught up in school, jobs, families, we lose track of that feeling. We tamp it down with practicality. We forget. Our eyes are shielded to the diverse beauty around us, the things that make that rhythm beat inside us with joy, and wonder, love or sadness.
Maybe it's a nursery rhyme read to a child or grandchild that causes the beat to begin, deep within, once more. Maybe it's a song we hear – and suddenly our toes or fingers are tapping, our hearts respond, or maybe it's a random poetry prompt.
So, I guess, I write poetry to remember, to feel that primal rhythm, to find the beauty, and, just maybe, to reawaken that feeling in others.
If you’d like to share why you write poetry, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with a 300-500 word personal essay that shares why you write poetry. It can be serious, happy, sad, silly–whatever poetry means for you. And be sure to include your preferred bio (50-100 words) and head shot. If I like what you send, I’ll include it as a future guest post on the blog.