August 12, 2012
Lots of crickets heard around Wichita in summer. I have at least one story plotted out that wouldn’t have existed if it weren’t for the crickets, and a poem as well. Putting off has been the problem with me lately, I have a story with a submission deadline of the end of next month and have yet to make much headway on the actual writing of the thing. Plotting it out is another matter, I have that done already. When it comes to stories, I have to plot them out and have some idea where I’m going or it goes nowhere. I know this from bitter (or at least unsweetened) experience. Last year I started a story aimed for an anthology, had a boffo idea but no ending. The deadline approached and I had a lot of words but no real plot and no ending. The story is on my “to be finished someday” pile. The anthology, without me, got published to some nice reviews. Which brings me to the poem and the crickets. This poem whanged into my head about six (!!!) years ago, pretty well fully-formed when I was laying around listening to the crickets chirp away.
The Last Cricket by Jeff Baker
I know you. I know your song.
Last one sitting there at the dance
Invited but alone
Nonetheless, making your plaintive noise
In the auditorium of Autumn.
I have been there too in a different life
And I hear you
As the lights are turned off
And the doors shut
All of the others paired off and gone
You the defiant, desperate
Welcome of winter.