To try to write like someone
is like gleaning off the icing layer
on a lovely sponge cake;

where Venus parts with
hard-won favours,
euphonious melodies lingering
on your blessed tongue
for this gratuitous moment –

but feeling crudely dissatisfied

as the hollow ring
of a frustrated stomach
echoes the similar sentiments
of this crestfallen owner.

To swallow the whole style, line and sinker,
is like gobbling up the whole cake
and turning around to see
if anyone noticed your naughty deed –

You crow to yourself,
a hidden gauntlet in a velvet cloak;

but everyone soon finds out
when you contract tell-tale signs
of beastly salmonella,

your Olympian sprints
to the increasingly rancid toilet
more heroic in nature

than the assignments
they know you
half-hardheartedly churn out
on a regular basis.

To examine the writer’s life
by surreptitiously snooping
through his diaries,
splashes of red, green and yellow
in a riotous dramatization –

(how is the poor sod not rolling in his grave?)

A microscopic glimpse
into the portrait
of a struggling artist,
or simply just another
poor soul lost,
to the harbinger
of drugs and drink?

As you can see now,
there’s no shortcut
down this rocky, bumpy road –

Painful as it is;
where selves and soles
are ripped cleanly into two,

but if we sit down
and allow the humble nib
to scratch the page;

recording these moments
of inner realization –
a dim lightbulb slowly
glowing with intensity,
as a passage is read
or a little quote digested

to let the thoughts flow
uninhibited while
blatantly ignoring this
savage voice of doubt
in our head;

This, then,
is when we can finally stop
placing these writers
on some absurd golden pedestal

and allow ourselves
to come,

of age.

© Zelda Reville

10 thoughts on “Fortissimo

  1. I think it must be flattering to have people try to emulate you, and try to understand you, though they may misunderstand you too. I think this can be a natural part of empathising paired with writing though, to look at things from other’s perspectives.
    But yeah, this made me think of this quote too: “Always be a first rate version of yourself and not a second rate version of someone else.” Judy Garland
    I think both can be good.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I agree with you! I was reading Byron and inevitably found myself wanting to write like him, and did try writing in his style, but in the end there’s only so much we can rip off, because we’re not him – we didn’t experience life like how he did, we don’t see things as he did….we may possess the same emotions and go through the same experiences, but in the end this body of ours limits us to a certain extent. Words are a very helpful vehicle in this case…transporting us across these bodily realms to another’s perspective, situation, eyes….

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah, thank you – it’s my pleasure! I enjoyed reading your comment, it’s good to know the thoughts of other people, seeing as it is too easy to end up being cocooned in one’s perspective.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. And yes, only imaginings. As long as we recognise that, we never can be someone else and know and understand them completely, it can be a beautiful thing to try.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. He’s actually quite good – a poetic encapsulation of beauty, melodrama and that famous British wit. His poetry looks very simple but it isn’t! I kept laughing to myself while reading his poems…

      Here’s one of his more famous poems, She Walks In Beauty:

      She walks in beauty, like the night
      Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
      And all that’s best of dark and bright
      Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
      Thus mellowed to that tender light
      Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

      One shade the more, one ray the less,
      Had half impaired the nameless grace
      Which waves in every raven tress,
      Or softly lightens o’er her face;
      Where thoughts serenely sweet express,
      How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

      And on that cheek, and o’er that brow,
      So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
      The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
      But tell of days in goodness spent,
      A mind at peace with all below,
      A heart whose love is innocent!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. “And all that’s best of dark and bright
        Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
        Thus mellowed to that tender light
        Which heaven to gaudy day denies.” This is lovely. I think I was always put off him I think because of his reputation for not having a heart, but I think that description’s given out too often and is usually inaccurate, and doesn’t really mean anything maybe.

        Liked by 1 person

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