Bottle of Wine

I am at a bad place in my story.  Honestly, for about a month I haven’t really written anything.  The truth is that I have reached a place where I need to go back and edit.  I have a lot of work to do but it’s not writing work, it’s puzzle solving.  It’s the slow grueling stuff of untangling my plot and figuring out how to cut a path forward.

It’s a pain in the ass.  And so I find myself facing the choice of either not writing at all (which is what I chose for several weeks), digging into that mire (which I seem desperate to avoid), or writing something else.

And I have chosen door number three!

Unfortunately, I find I’m running low on ideas.  It’s as though creativity comes in fits and starts, and some days you find you simply have nothing to say.  And yet I think that creativity is something you conjure yourself as well, and of course there is little to say when you aren’t thinking of it.

So here I go, trying to force another poem.  I think it could use some editing, and is honestly a little uninspired.  I need a zinger of imagery or some really resonant emotional beat.  Right now I’d grade it about a C / C+.

But hey, when you are low on gas, you go as far as you can and hope for the best.


I have a bottle of wine that I never open. 

A worthless muscadine not fit

to serve or drink.  I keep it shut behind

the oak door of a high cabinet.

Out of sight.  Out of reach.


We bought it one day at a vineyard

on the first day of spring.  Snow flurries

had dusted our faces the night before when

we walked hand-in-hand down the empty street

to a little bar and enjoyed

the evening.


That next day we ate eggs at noon and the sun

hid behind a low blanket of billowing grey

clouds.  The only flowers were in the greenhouse.

No one told the leafless trees that spring

Had come to the mountains.


We overindulged at the tasting,

as we were wont to do.

And truly, I never had any self control

When we did things together.  Your smile

And my proclivity to please

turned me to taffy.


So as we fumbled our way from tasting table to tasting table

And through the obligatory gift shop,

you thought that you’d found a fun souvenir.

I obliged, because I loved you.

And now one year, six months later I have

A worthless muscadine not fit to serve or drink.


And like a box of love letters packed away

in the deep recesses of my bedroom closet,

I find that I can neither look at it, 

nor discard it.  So it remains tucked away

upon the highest shelf.


Out of sight.

Out of reach.

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