it’s a dirt road, see,
i’m standing in the middle of,
and if the dirt were water,
it would boil down to this:

i have 11 in one hand, I say,
and only one in the other,
so either i can keep 11
and get rid of one,
or else keep the one
and get rid of the 11.
but I don’t need any of them,
i say, so I put my two hands together
to make sure I have them all
but I don’t need them all.

so i lay them on the ground
and walk 12 paces from the pile
in a easterly direction,
then walk a perfect circle
around the pile
in a counterclockwise direction
until i reach the start of the circle,
then i walk to the middle.

i pick one from the pile,
and say, “I’ll take this one,”
then i put it back down
and pick another up and say,
“i want this one.”
then I put it down.

then i pick it up

then i put it down

then i pick it up

then i pick it up

then i put it down

then i put it down

and I say this will be a poem
and i say I’m just thinking out loud
and i say what am I going to do
and I say I’m doing it


Wassily Kandinsky. Several Circles. 1926. Oil on canvas. Via Olga's Gallery

Wassily Kandinsky. Several Circles. 1926. Oil on canvas. Via Olga’s Gallery

©A. D. Joyce, 2014


14 thoughts on “counterclockwise

  1. debrblog

    I’m intrigued by the poem–the freedom it shows, the structure, the thought process… And I keep reading it over and over again–hearing your voice. Thank you!


  2. Was this poem inspired by a prompt? (I have a vague memory of a prompt about cards.) If so, I love what you’ve done with it. Very creative. If not, I still love the poem. It makes me want to know the speaker better, as she’s pretty cool.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the comments, Janelle. Actually, I had no prompt for the poem. It came from my addle brain. Once I wrote the poem, I went searching for a piece of art that would complement it. I was lucky to find it. Olga’s Gallery is a great site, by the way.


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