Poetry: My Ticket to Dance

by Kate Farrell on June 30, 2013

Jasmine Belen, 1972

Jasmine Belén, 1972

Jasmine Belén, Winner of Second Honorable Mention Poetry, shares her love of poetry in both mystical and technical terms.

Blog post written by Jasmine Belén:

Recently after I reflected on the multitude of poems I’ve created since childhood, I found this ditty titled “Sowing Seeds,” in my adolescent journal.

Diamond stairway in the darkened sky
glittering steps for my heavenly climb
I grab the tail of a blazing star
fly across the universe
and plant poetry into the black hole of space.

Until I began writing my memoir six years ago, poetry was the muse that beckoned. To combine vision, rhythm, and soul into a beautiful collage of words soothed my restless spirit. “Stop writing nonsense and pay attention,” my 4th grade teacher once admonished after she confiscated my binder of poetry.

Today as I try to stay on the task of mastering the rigidity of writing a novel-length book, a cornucopia of words fill my senses and plead to be put in beds of poetry. It’s difficult to concentrate when imagination is constantly afoot. While writing the story, “Woodstock or Bust,” for the anthology I had to pluck out the uninvited poetry that meandered into my story.

On my computer desktop I have created a file titled Poet’s Junkyard to drop my wayward lines and cast-off images. When I need a rhythmic fix I go trolling there and salvage a poem from the rubble. Thankfully modern day technology also makes it easy to create instant poems. I babble to my iPhone, “Siri, take a note. File it in the Poet’s Junkyard.”

My poem, “Times Change,” that was chosen for the anthology is 99% true with one small poetic modification. After I wrote the non-fiction story of my aborted attempt to get to Woodstock I felt a yearning to go back in time and dance at the festival. After all, I never did use my ticket. Using my poetic license I spun the clock backward and slipped through the gateway to the past. Clad in my favorite ‘60s tie-dyed outfit I danced riotously to the music that once fueled my teen-aged soul.

After a short eternity, time boomeranged me forward through a birds-eye view of my life. My poem showed me just how far I have come on the mystical and sometimes thorny tour of my life. A healing takes place with each stanza and story I write.

My hopes for this new age of abbreviation and slang is that the beauty of words to lift, educate, and evoke love survive in its highest form. After all, every second more than a million and one poets are born. Mmn… I feel another verse coming on. Some things are simply not meant to change.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Sara Etgen-Baker July 1, 2013

Jasmine–I loved reading your post! Thank you for sharing. I appreciate the feelings and images you created with words like “trolling,” “time boomeranged,” and “thorny tour of my life.” You have a gift! I’m reminded that with each story I write, I, too, heal. There’s great power in healing through words! Hats off to you!


Linda Viviani July 1, 2013

Brilliant work, i love the pace of the poem, streaming into my eyes, then my ears and into my soul,

lovely, beautiful and true.



Kayte Ryann July 4, 2013

Jazzi, your writing is so musical. I love it! Keep writing. You just get better and better.


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