Monday, June 14, 2010

16: Dan Waber

This is a really interesting project. And thinking about it made me realize something about my own process that I hadn't been aware of previously--I don't work through anywhere near as many drafts today as I used to go through. I was an incessant reviser for a long time. I even used a version control system normally used by software developers that allowed me to keep track of every version, so that I could revert at any time to any draft. But today I work in a much less drafty room, so to speak. I write, and then I review and revise, and then prior to submission (if it's a piece that ends up being submitted, not much of what I do goes out anymore), I'll read through once more looking for typos. So, I can't really look at this piece as if it were a draft of mine, since I'm not really draft-based anymore. However, if this fits with your vision for the project, I can show you how I'd suggest it be re-written if someone were asking me for my opinion as an editor.

What can you do with a banjo
when you’re lazy and the moon is full?
The brain’s smoke hearse
puts the smoulder to the real.

I’m wretched and lie
like an old poem.

A violet burns inside my head
like a rhyme that cloys
never fully closed,

doors where my eyes, ears, mouth, nose

I never regret moonlight in my bed--
a banjo, a memory, a regret,
another rhyme.

‘I have a foolish heart?’
What does that mean, these sweet,
forgetful midnight words?

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