Come see me read poems about a bad baby in Oakland on Wednesday!
- 1 week ago
a found poem from Taylor Swift’s Rolling Stone cover story
I moved to New York
and every day was a struggle
forget making plans for life
we were just trying to make it to next week
if you’re not in love New York is like
this blazing bonfire and no one is in control
I love this. Also, in the same profile, Taylor Swift said this and I support this thinking (not just about cats): “I asked around: I was like, ‘Does two cats count as cats?’ But then I thought, what imaginary guy’s perspective am I thinking about this from?”Source: alishalevin
- 2 weeks ago
- 3 weeks ago
- 3 weeks ago
A few people have written to me and said, “I like this poem! Can I send it to my friend who also appreciates Dawson’s Creek/thinks about death a lot/reads everything she can about the Botkin Sisters?”
Please feel free to share individual poems from The Secret Poems of Abigail Welhouse quietly. Email your friends. Print the poems out and paste them on postcards. Transcribe the short ones in your handwriting and paste them up in bathroom stalls. I’d be thrilled.
For now, I’m keeping Secret Poems in those private spaces, and away from social media or websites that can be searched.
I started emailing poems in May, after writing a poem a day during April. I was jealous of my friends who instantly shared their work to their blogs or social media. I felt that mine needed more time to ferment. I was also concerned that some literary journals wouldn’t want to publish poems that I’d already published myself through social media, even on my personal Tumblr.
Right away, there was something freeing about using email to share sneak previews of work that haven’t been published for a larger audience yet. I wasn’t checking back for likes or favorites or to see how many people shared it. (I could still check back to see how many people opened the email, but somehow, that’s easier to get over.)
I also liked that I could reach friends, relatives, and strangers that didn’t use Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr. I don’t know what social media platform will be in vogue in a few years, so I’m happy to have a list of people that I can share poems with even if Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr go the way of Xanga, MySpace, and Friendster.
The Secret Poems of Abigail Welhouse is my laboratory. I’ll often make last-minute edits right before hitting “send.” Sometimes the poems shape-shift before they’re published for a larger audience. Other times they stay the same, like “Bad Baby,” the very first Secret Poem I sent out, which is soon to be not secret at all. It’s the title poem of my dancing girl press chapbook, which comes out in 2015, and it will also be published in the first issue of Chicken Scratch in a few weeks. When I do have poems (or other writing) published, I add them as a post-script to my emails.
I’ve kept some kind of online record of my thoughts since 2003 or so, but now that I’m aware of how public the internet is, it’s harder to write openly without worrying about the consequences. I think more about privacy than I used to. When I read my first entries, it’s funny to me how obviously I write about people I have crushes on, for example, with the utmost confidence that they won’t read it. I don’t have that kind of faith in the internet anymore (although these days, my crush is not secret). It was misplaced faith to begin with. Why not just post some photos of dogs?
So Secret Poems is about me finding an equilibrium. Sharing, with boundaries.