Poem Portal #2: Artists Among Us


And now for a temporal portal into my most explosive poetry-writing phase: age 18-23.  After I dropped out of university, I took a couple of creative writing courses online — part of the ‘I will eventually add up to a degree’ show I put on for my parents.  I enjoyed the poetry writing course namely for the amount of poems I produced through it.  If I developed a profound appreciation for poetry in its many forms, this was purely accidental.  Most likely I did not.  I knew poetry wasn’t my strong suit, but there were so many contests for it!  So many submission possibilities!  My novels came first, but never back then would I shy from squeezing in potentially attention-getting projects, so long as I could wrap my head around them.

After the course, I pushed myself to write more poems in an attempt to keep the momentum going.  I looked up poetry contests just for the prompts and discovered that my favourite way to get an idea was the ‘use all these words in a poem’ prompt.  The following poem was one of these (although I couldn’t tell you now which words were the prompts):

Artists Among Us

Who to blame?  How to win?

Artists descended: mad, fearful thingsAlien Artist

Fear they won’t belong, or worse: they’ll fit in.

Sorted and labeled like one of their paints.

Horror!  To what measures will this town have to suffer

Their brain-happy pleasures?  Inspirational cravings…

What if rust and mold’s more fun to draw?

In their field they say, the work is a child—

“My baby,” they say.

With descendants as these,

We may set our minds at ease,

Surely, they’ll soon be extinct.

By jcmlott

Poem Portal #1: Angelina

Happy Canada Day!Canada flag

I tried blogging a while back about my dull, everyday life, but I’ve discovered the only non-fiction I’m good at is the kind that talks about fiction.  So for my author website, I am going to share the poems I’ve written.  They will range from childhood to the present day, which means you will find quality either in the poem itself or in my mockery of it (as an Early Childhood Educator, I must add it is only okay to make fun of a child’s writing when that child is your own past self).

I was too lazy to organize my collection chronologically.  Think of each post as a random portal into my lifetime.

When I was nine, I used to write never-ending songs about each of my little sisters in my school journal.  I know I was nine because my first ever scribblings for the older of the two sisters goes: “Oh, I have a little sister at the age of four, her name is Angelina and mine is Jennifer…”

Here is the only version of the Angelina song that ever made it onto my computer (circa age 14):

Little AngieWe sat upon a summer’s eve to watch a grand movie,

It was full of fear, dark and doubt, and daring chivalry,

There was beauty, pain, great deeds, wise words,

And courageous men who swung long swords,

Gazing raptly at the screen

Our thoughts were all profound,

All except Angelina

Whose thoughts were all aloud!

Little Tegan



I wrote a long song about my younger little sister, too.  It was about the times she started saying her first words, and she wouldn’t say them in front of other people to prove that I’d really heard her say them.  I believe it started: “Oh Tegan, you are annoying, I just don’t understand, why must you embarrass me in front of all my friends…”




Sisters sing

Good thing my sisters and I are mature adults now and they know I love them no matter how inspiring their childhood was for me…right?  That’s us singing in the photo, by the way, and we sound awesome.  And my sisters totally have veto power here…enjoy this post while it lasts…

By jcmlott