I love writing from words or themes other people give me – please, if you feel like there’s anything you want to be turned into poetry, head to the form which will send your suggestions to me. I love them mostly because I always find something which I wouldn’t otherwise write – it pulls me away from the personal stuff into more imaginative realms.
The picture today is from the process of creating a poem from the prompt “polar night”. I’m think the poem has a lot of potential to develop into something really nice with some further editing!
Constantly looking for the next innovation or new way of doing things shifts the focus of work in such a way that depth disappears – I prefer growing things, repetition and practice, research and lots of failure, and I think the trick is to focus on that repetitive work, not finding something extraordinary (it appears if it does). Obviously, it’s hard since the outside pressure often asks for something we have not thought of, new ways of thinking or so on. Common issue!
So today, it’s just a few very simple things collected from the shore:
Herään meren rannalta
Se on sama kuin eilen
ja henkeäsalpaavan kaunis.
Tunnistan tämän rakkaudeksi.
I wake up from the seashore
it’s the same as yesterday
steals my breath away.
I recognize this is love.
This poem is, in a way, very personal. I haven’t felt like this in a long time, and I actually started writing about the weird situations where you realize you are both the person you were before and a person you are now – especially in relation to how I am both Iquiet and very loud. Layered contradictions. But this is kind of a memory which climbed through those layers tonight.
I borrow skins from others
for mine aches,
if I try to exist inside of it
I light a cigarette, then
on the tossed around bed sheets
where Romeo lays still asleep
his arms around that girl
who plays hide-and-seek
with the invisible.
Pukeudun ihoon, joka on toiselta lainassa,
sillä omani särkee kaikesta olemassa
päästän itsestäni irti
puhallan tupakansavusta kummituksen kattoon
Romeon uniset käsivarret
joka on piilosilla näkymättömän kanssa.
Todays’ poem is unsurprisingly inspired by the election in US, but I also took something from the walk of the morning where I counted thousand steps to try and slow myself down. The aim wasn’t to make a perfect count (I’m fairly sure I skipped from 729 to 780 somehow) but to engage my mind with something that ties with the body in a way that I have to take time for each step. I have been curious about exercises which embody the mind and/or grow thoughts out of that slower pace of existing ever since I realised I don’t really breath while walking because I go way too fast.
Also, as promised – I would love to make this blog a bit more interactive, and I am fond of the thought of poetry letters, which would basically mean that if you want, take a part of my poem and respond to it – or write the same situation from a different viewpoint (like, what was the hedge thinking when I was there counting my steps all enlightened!) I will post your poems if you want them published here alongside with mine. Respond to poem here > >
Or if you want to contribute in a different way –
Send me an image to engage with > >
Request a theme or a word that I have to include within a poem > >
For me, finding ideas to write about has never been especially hard – they are everywhere. I’ve always struggled more with the labour of bringing them out in the world in such a way the chaos within me becomes understandable to others as well. I often get to a point where something is nearly done and then leave it unedited and unpolished and start something new because I can see where it’s going and turn away because hey, we know what that is now, don’t we all? I hide my impatience inside the love I hold for mismatched things and unfinished business. I also tend to work with a thousand projects at the same time –
Now I feel like should assure you that I am able to meet deadlines when it’s actually necessary! Just don’t tell me there’s a fluid date which will expand into eternity, I will wander out of time. And space.
For the month of November, I want to try something that combines bit of both – continuity and labour with acceptance and use of ideas. Nothing fancy, just a blog post every day with a a picture & poem in it, either in English or Finnish or both. I’d also love to get other people involved, but I will get around that tweak tomorrow to not have too much information on one post.
November 3th 2020 – This poem is yet to be named, but it’s from the beach in the above picture where I had my morning coffee with a seagull.
The November sunrise softened the sand on the shore
into something my bare feet were eager to experience
without the supposedly water-proof hiking boots
which, I admit,
are now carry-around footbaths
with the threads undone from where they were holding it together.
I bought those shoes in an attempt
to shelter myself against water streams, puddles and rainfall
against cold damp socks
rusty nails, twigs, and mud
but my feet are bare and restless
struggling to get through the sole of the boot
touch the seabed
and I let them
slow me down
I breathe in the rhythm of what I was made for without all this resilience
we built for ourselves to feel protected.
This is a placeholder for what is to become, hopefully and finally, an actual blog that I keep updating. I’ve started quite a few of these, and mostly because they’ve always lacked focus, I’ve given up. But if you can’t get rid of something, you can always enhance and accept it, and thus this is a placeholder for what is to become, hopefully and finally, an actual blog that I keep updating because it’s meant for wandering. Meant for losing focus. Meant for whatever is important whenever. From mental health activism to poetry to storytelling.
The general umbrella for this wandering is my work as a writer and performer, and the feeling of necessity to make some of the invisible work visible. For a long time I was sour because nobody believed me when I said I actually am a decent writer, but the situation got better when I let them read some of my work. Who would have guessed doing is better way to show than being a show off?
#queenofwandering is Jenni Nikinmaa, a poet & playwright from Finland/Ireland, who writes misbehaving poetry, poetic and disturbing drama and performs spoken word in clothes that have holes in them, not only because of her bad attitude but also because we need to change the things we consider important on the brink of ecological catastrophe.