NPM | Musings from My Younger Self | The World is Wild

Walking Stick

It’s been far too long since I shared a “musing from my younger self,” so for this last full week of National Photography Month I will share some the words and wisdom of my teenage years with an appropriate, recent photo. The appropriate part is debatable.

Today, I’m sharing a poem I wrote just after I turned 17. My friend, Cy, calls it the prophetic poem. The photo above of a “giant stick bug” walking across the water seemed complementary.

The World Is Wild
Chandra Lynn (Age: 17)

The world is wild-
Men holding top positions
are on the ground,
biting the dust and busting
those who dry out the grass
and smoke it.

Dignity and courage
are part of the past.
Pride left and people fell.

People need chemicals
to erase the pain.
Money buys love.
To be further educated
one must have brains.

The world is wild.
The animals are loose,
and I am shut in.
Thank God!!!

I wish I could remember what prompted some of these youthful poems. I can remember clearly why I wrote some of them. For others, like this one, I draw a complete blank. Thanks to a couple of my students, I’m beginning to find the poems less cringey. They give insight into who I was and who I am.

13 thoughts on “NPM | Musings from My Younger Self | The World is Wild

  1. Ellen Hawley says:

    I like what you said about finding your early poems easier to live with thanks to your own students. In the first poetry class I ever took, the professor handed out some anonymous poems for us to critique. The point was to learn to critique someone else’s work, which in hindsight was a wise thing to teach–it did keep the class from going feral. At the end, he told us he’d written them at 21. Letting us practice on them struck me as a brave thing for him to do, and a generous one.

    I was in my early thirties at the time and just starting to write, and they made me grateful that I hadn’t started writing earlier–except for one poem, which I still remember part of and which was terrible. And like you, I haven’t a clue what triggered it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chandra Lynn says:

      Wow. He was brave. I’ve shared a few things here and there with students. I can’t say I’m numb to the cringe-level of those early works, but I am getting better. I wish I hadn’t stopped writing creatively while working on my doctorate. I’m convinced that experience sapped all the life and creativity out of me. Took me a decade to recover.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Chandra Lynn says:

        I don’t think it has to be that way. I think at my school there was this kind of division between the writers and the critics and theorists, like it was inconceivable that one could be both.

        Liked by 1 person

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