Second, Angela (author of My Poetry Place blog) is an incredible musician. When she told me she would do a guest post on my blog and I could pick the subject, I was thrilled! I asked her about the creativity difference between writing and making music.
Lastly, Angela's book is on sale for pre-order here (go ten rows down). And here is an amazing video she made.
Drawing My Way Out of a Paper Bag
by Angela Felsted
First off, anyone who has read The Little Prince is likely familiar with this picture. It represents the difference between how adults and children see things, because where a grown up may see nothing more than a rumpled hat, the child sees an elephant inside a boa constrictor.
Since I am artistically challenged, I draw my elephants in a different way entirely. Poems are my sketches; music is my paint, and the emotions I convey are determined by my color palette.
In the first year of my marriage, whenever I got angry with my husband, I’d practice on the main floor and tear into the Walton Viola Concerto until music reverberated off the hard wood floor.
“Are you imagining ripping my head off?” hubby would ask, more conscious of the aggression in my playing than I was.
“Of course not,” I’d lie.
His eyes would go wide, and he’d get this frightened look on his face, like he was a little boy and I was his mother about to scold him.
Later, when I was calm, he confided that it scared him when I express my anger through playing the viola. I didn’t have to speak or voice my feelings when I put them into music. The sounds and notes I produced screamed them for me. Though I did not write those notes, I could bend them to my will.
Music was my conduit.
Poetry is different. When I write poetry, I decide which word goes where. I am the master and creature of my universe, even when the words I choose rebel and misbehave, even when I need to rewrite everything at least ten times. Please don’t get me wrong, Poetry is a conduit too. But being the one who patches it together, I’m forced to ask myself if the words I employ are up to task, if I need to tell the reader about my elephant, or if the mention of his tusks and trunk speak louder by themselves.
Sometimes less is more.