Short and sweet as two sugars


We officially finished poetry today, and moved on to short story writing. I have to say I’m bricking it, because I think the last time I wrote a short story that wasn’t some form of fanfic was…leaving cert. Like, 5 years ago. So it’s going to be painful and bloody.

Also, I’ll miss poetry, because that’s really the form of creative writing that I’m most familiar with. I have no idea what I’ll submit for assessment at the end of the semester, but writing poems has never really been difficult for me, mostly because since I don’t show them to people, I don’t really have any fear of them being crap. With short stories, aside from this fear of being graded, I also tend to get bored. Once I plan out a story…hey, I know what’s going to happen, why would I bother writing it now? I don’t really see my writing as something to be shared, and so that’s obviously a problem when it comes to stories. There are plenty of platforms on the internet for people to post fanfiction or poetry, but it seems like there are very few for original short stories. Or I’m just hanging out in the wrong places!

This next poem is the one I read out in class today. The teacher said that poetry needs to have a source of tension, which this poem really lacks, but I have to say that I’m still happy with it. I’ll make sure to include that tension / juxtaposition in the poem I submit for assessment, though!

Routine (or Don’t talk to me till I’ve had my tea)


Sleepeyed drowsy lazy steps

stumble to the kitchen — kettle

mug and tea and water.


Stand like an eejit by the sink.

Forget what to do. More

sleepeyed drowsy lazy steps


To the sink. Fill kettle and

put it on. Moan when greeted — focus on

mug and tea and water.


Finally a whistle and a click.

Pour water, add milk then

sleepeyed drowsy lazy steps


To the couch or table, anywhere

to sit and then shove face into

mug and tea and water.


Spend twenty minutes on what’s in hand:

the heat, the smell, this cure for

sleepeyed drowsy lazy steps —

mug and tea and water.


So I tried for a villanelle, but ignored the rhyming scheme. I think it still works, though. I’m getting more and more interested in poetic forms, since I’m so used to writing free verse. It’s satisfying in a very different way to write a poem that fits (more or less) with a set form. Here’s one I wrote last week, in the form of a tritina (basically half a sestina: only three repeating end words, and one line containing them all at the end).

Lacanian Reflection


There is another in the mirror.

Its hands raise when I raise mine

And its eyes stare curiously.


It copies my every move. Curiously,

There is no delay in this mirror:

Its actions reflect exactly mine.


The woman babbles that this is mine —

This figure, this reflection. I curiously

Move forwards and tap the mirror.


I am two selves, curiously — mine and mirror.


About finalyearfrench

I'm a final year student, studying English and French, having taken the long way round to get there (even if I'm still only 24). This blog was originally started as a class assignment, though I'm quickly finding it an excellent procrastination tool! Definite updates: Mondays on French class, and Tuesdays on Creative Writing class. Scattered updates throughout the rest of the week. Je suis étudiante de lettres, dans l'année finale, ayant pris une trotte d'y arriver! J'ai 23 ans. Nouveaux posts: le lundi sur cours de français, le mardi sur cours d'écriture créative. Posts épars tout au long de la semaine.

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