Sometimes my best work comes when I’m depressed

It’s true, but the difficult part is to grab a pen or fire up the laptop to begin writing. The quote below from Leonard Cohen sums it up. He is one of my favorite poets, singer, songwriter, author and quote artist. Sometimes music can not only be inspirational, but it can also be a source of energy. Even if you feel well but don’t feel like writing and have no idea of what to write, music often stirs up the emotions while giving you energy; all you do is listen to your feelings and start writing. Oh, one other point, Leonard Cohen suffered throughout his life with serious bouts of depression. He raged against his depression and sometimes he surrendered to it.

Leonard Cohen knew all about depression

Life Inside My Head

A poem about depression…

fake news     no news
rubber boots with holes
a place where the sky
is always grey
most days it rains 
people mulling 
their quiet despair
in bars that 
look like       somebody's unfinished
basement where
formica tables and folding chairs
got dusted off 
and tossed
about the dirt     floor
and this 
is a place where 
buildings don't
have basements and most
people living
here   have
                                never seen one
much less
been in one
the only certainties
are that
someone is     hungry
or thirsty
or crying
or drinking
too             much
everyone here
and everyone has     too
much time on their hands
and tomorrow it will
course be grey
probably rain    and
   every other day
look like the day     before
and the day
after is
to be like
its yesterday
the sky will be grey
and probably
 it will rain     with
a chance of
fake news
no news
as to that
must say nobody     living
really gives a shit! 

I never knew I was different


An About Me Post

No one ever pointed out how different my appearance was; however, when I was old enough to understand English, my mother began to taunt me by saying I “was the milkman’s son.” She also had several Italian words she constantly used except when my father was home. Early on I knew the meaning of two of the names, stupido and cretino, stupid or dumb and idiot or mentally subnormal. The third name, “bruto”, means a beast or ugly idiot. It took many decades before I pieced everything together, but the damage was done.

So What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

An “About Me” Post

Both of my parents were Italian Americans born in America, but my mother spent her formative years in a small town in the mountains southeast of Naples. When she returned to America, she was more of an old world Italian immigrant with very traditional values.

Everyone on both sides of the family had jet black hair and various shades of an olive complexion. I too was born with jet black hair though I never learned what my skin tone was at birth. But something unforgivable happened shortly after my birth that haunted my mother till the day she died. My jet black hair began to lighten into what she called “dirty blond”. During the summer months it lighten to blond, and my skin tone was fair. I was atypical in a large Italian family where everyone had olive skin and jet black hair.

The first time…

Admittedly, the title of this post seems vague, open-ended, incomplete and seemingly not about poetry. It lacks context to give it clarity and appears lost without direction. However, don’t despair. The fact that the title is open allows it to be a fantastic writing prompt. We can add whatever comes to mind as our context.

Adding context completes the idea of the sentence. It becomes alive and has a direction we can follow. We now have an idea for writing something fresh and unique. The idea is a really cool and easy to create writing prompt.

We can easily make this about poetry by adding “…I wrote a poem,” It can easily become a writing prompt, just add an ending. It’s also a great tool for breaking through writer’s block. Quickly make a list of ten endings. Don’t think too much here. Spin out your ideas regardless if they make sense or not. Then, once you have a list, pick the one that you feel excited about. Or maybe the one that seems strange and sinister. Then, write a poem about it.

The first time I wrote a post

Yes. this is the very first time.