There is a surprise element to every workshop we run, not least the creative writing ones, wherein there is a Booker or Pulitzer Prize candidate as yet untapped, even by their own mind.
Life’s many forks, twists, turns, dips, obstacles in the road, hitchhike rides and high heavens make other plans, create other distractions and take us places where creative potential is not at the forefront of survival strategy. The good thing about creative potential is that it is like the long-forgotten sweet at the bottom of your travel bag that you rediscover when you’re really hungry or on need of a pick-me-up. A little warm, a little squashed but, damn, you’ve carried it with you the whole, long road and once you unwrap it, it’s as good as it ever was and deliciously revivifying. So it is with long-forgotten creativity. Wherever life takes you, it stays with you beneath all the heavy baggage, just waiting for you to rediscover it when you most need it.
So when Rob, in the last Writing for Wellbeing workshop of 2019, mumbled that he wasn’t sure why he was there, someone had told him he should come to our workshops and this one looked alright and, no, he’d never written anything before, I had an inkling he might be about to find that sweet at the bottom of his rucksack.
This hour-long session explores ways to warm up the imagination after a long vacation, using visual prompts and the humble button as diving platforms. At the end, participants are encouraged to write a short poem or prose centred around a generally mundane journey they frequently make. If they don’t want to write about themselves, they can use the ‘lost button’, writing about the person who lost it and the journey it was lost on. Rob combined the two and below is the result. Thank you, Rob, for sharing it with us. I hope to see you at the next session and that this time, you’ll know exactly why you’re there.
“Everything’s ready, time to go.
I wonder if tonight will be a show.”
Grab my keys as the taxi’s waiting
Back of my mind “I’m gonna get late in.”
Not too inebriated as I like to remember,
But my impulsiveness makes me down for whatever.
I can’t stand the stories or the Chinese whispers
time to grow up god damn I’m a “Mr!”
I came home with some friends and a missing button
Don’t know how I lost it but I’ll get a new one.
It was a good night, just must have got wild
Clothes been getting ruined since I was a child.
See the original text here:
R.W. Lost Button poem 16.12