When inspiration isn’t forthcoming, I reach into that pile and get cracking. I enjoy repairing old poems from the position of more knowledge of what was with me when I first wrote them. I have always written and revised as such. I want those first stabs as cold and forgotten as possible. In this case, new knowledge (and a lot of psychotherapy) taught me all about what was happening to so load my then-present life with outrageous static that the new angle made for an easy reconnoiter with an old “friend”.
I’m not much for the now “pop” grief broadcasts I read in many poetry magazines. It’s all like, “I fell down and need to make a documentary about it” or something. So I went just a bit wry here, taking both sincere and mocking stances along the lines of what friends and I used to joke about in college: he went from bed to verse. Back then, we were all expert philosophers, so intense as to embarrass the sunlight, and quite rebellious about all of this, little Chairman Maos partying all over people’s lives simply for the sake of a half-baked idea. (Right: Gordon Hilgers (front) during his college days. Copyright permission granted by Gordon Hilgers for this CRC Blog Post Only)
I could not go outside this apartment here in North Dallas without getting a full set of what I’d left behind. Who knows? Maybe situations occur for a reason, right? What we make of what is left to us makes all the difference in who we become.
Somewhere in vast libraries everywhere is
Below middle: Entrance to The Federal Cente)
I saw and heard a big meteor in second grade, and then in third grade, I was certain I’d found it. It was big, metallic, covered with sears and bubbled-up rock. I drug it home with massive effort, a whole three blocks and a long “meteor trail” of scratched concrete followed me there. (Left: Williamette Meteorite in New York City in 1906. Attributed to American Museum of Natural History)
We moved to Dallas just in time for the Kennedy assassination, and at home I witnessed Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech when it was happening. One of my biggest inspirations into poetry was The Moody Blues. I was at a friend’s, and I remember placing the big headphones over my ears to hear “Question”, and yes, I was set for life. I’d had other experiences that inspired me in that direction such as an encounter with a platinum blonde beatnik girl on Larimer Street in Denver, she and her kitty glasses, black clam-diggers and snap-fingers as she stood on a box and recited in her groove.
In college, I managed (somehow) to score higher than 99 percent of all entering students that year in verbal reasoning, and the government sent reps to offer me a full scholarship to “work for the government”. I laughed at them. (Left Gordon Hilgers in 1978. Copyright permission granted by Gordon Hilgers for this CRC Blog Post Only)
In early adulthood, I had my first manic attack as what turned out to be Bipolar Disorder ravaged me for years. I didn’t get adequate treatment until the discovery of Prozac, but even so it has taken me years of learning how to deal with what I call “the mung”. (Right: attributed and copyright granted by Gordon Hilgers for this CRC Blog Post Only)
I worked as a journalist, as a researcher in a research library where the poetry was (natch!), as an investigator, a paralegal, and as a lackey and a flunky. I’m happy I no longer work and can now devote my time to my poetic pursuit and a few other hobbies. I wait breathlessly for the announcement of my Nobel Prize. (Left Edgar Allen Poe)