Being Published and the Dilemma of Living Up to Standards

Posted by Abdel Kadz on Wednesday, October 10, 2007 with 4 comments
Oh Never Again

Oh never again will I ever find
That flower abloom in each day's decline,
With petals in crystal mists atwine
And hues enfold in Art's divine.

Oh never again will I ever see
That blossom blest as fays can be,
With a scent in forlorn hauntings plea
A yonder's quest in a murmuring lea.

Oh never again will I ever find
That lovely flower blest in Art's divine;
Oh never again will I ever see
That fairy blossom is but nestled in thee

If you don't know me personally, you wouldn’t have thought that I could come up with something mushy like that (laughs). But, I’m guilty as charged. These singsong rhymes were penned by me a few years back when I was somewhat possessed by this classic-writing-bard that has soon given up in feeding my cranium with metaphors, and similes, and hyperbole, and all those whatchamacallits needed in writing poems. It saddens me, but face the truth I must; I seem to be suffering from the Writer’s Block.


And in the dark a maiden came,
A vestal in umber shroud;
And there 'neath the ecliptic flame,
Shied amidst the striate crowd.

Ghast and laved in Luna's rays,
Her body moved in Eolian grace.
And for ev'ry bead of mist she cried,
An umbral dance in grim replied.

Then came to her were those entranced;
Gossam'ry eyed with pallid stones.
A maiden wailed, their shadows danced,
When the shepherd Endymion spawned.

2001, that was the year that I was able to write “good” poetry—well, poems that are good according to my standards. Three of the poems I wrote in that year were chosen for online publication in an Internet e-zine ( that accepts contributions the world over. One of those poems, Shadowdance, was included in their first print anthology released in 2005. Yes, I’m one of the lucky few who had a poem published in an international anthology. The news of it gave me an indescribable feeling. Its mere thought brought eye bags from sleeplessness and, of course, the feeling of pride and joy at having accomplished something of such magnitude. Imagine, somebody from Zamboanga making it to a book? Seeing your name printed there (page 12!), it's more than a poet could ask for.

But I guess that was about all there is for me as far as poetry writing is concerned, for in the coming years, the poet in me seemed to have retired or even died down. I summoned him sometimes; however, he has gone to that subconscious part of my mind that I can’t reach. Maybe he’s in a state of unconsciousness and soon will be revived and brought to the surface, taking control of the creative part of me. When would that be? Perhaps next year? 20? 30 years from now? I simply don’t have the answer yet. This block is indeed such a Herculean hurdle that writing some stanzas on a piece of paper would want me to tear that into bits for the sole reason that they do not live up to my poems in 2001 or my so-called “standards.” Maybe it could very well be the style that I prefer my work to be written in—that of the classical rhyming type—that would require a creative organization of thoughts and wordings. Or maybe it’s just me, the one placing this proverbial block, putting pressure to write poems of such caliber that I probably couldn't do anymore.

Having not written any is not something that I’d die from. What bothers me is the waste of a talent that I had once (or probably still has), and I’m not making a renewed effort on my end to bring it back. But I’m optimistic nonetheless. Who knows, next year, 20, or 30 years from now the classic-writing bard in me will be reawakened and will spawn a poetry collection of my own published (laughs). Or it could also be that the Megaera Anthology will be the only memento that I’ll ever have from being once a poet. Well, at least it’s better than none.