…like a sun storm—
like an Olympic medal—like Pompeii—
like Pompeii before lava made love groan
beneath the weight of heat—
So begins a poem recently published in r.kv.r.y, a quarterly online literary journal that explores recovery from addictions and compulsions in all its incarnations. I envisioned the poem’s narrator as young man reeling out of control, bursting with hyperbole and outrageous proclamations. The speaker isn’t me—really!—and writing in his voice pushed me to play with language in new, unfamiliar ways.
After the poem was published in r.kv.r.y, I decided to reuse it in my collection, Secret Formulas & Techniques of the Masters (Brick Road Poetry Press, 2018), so I changed the title and made several other edits.
Read the poem in r.kv.r.y : White Lightning
In a conversation with several fellow writers, I talked more about how this poem was made : Interview with Jackie Craven
Above: Detail from a painting ©Louise Craven Hourrigan, 1995