Story of a Girl (Part 4) Alec Vander Boom via FlickrI am not the first, nor will I be the last poet to make this confession: women inspire some of the best poetry one can write. If the poet is paying attention at all times, he can be inspired by women that aren’t his. By watching moments that aren’t his. And even by capturing some of his dreams, into the moments captured by another. Such is what happened to me some days ago because of a picture set.

I found the pictures at CycleStyle Australia as I was looking through their archives of posts. Having become a bigger fan of cycling, this winter cold has really set me back a bit (look, its just sitting there w/o me). I’m not one to ride in the cold for as much as I like biking. And when I see photos of warmer climates, even when those warmer climates are of times past, I start dreaming of getting on my ride.

Such was my state when I saw this set. I was blown away. Absolutely blown away. And really there should be no doubt why, but I just was. I like these greens. I loved riding in Philly and Charlotte on trails like this. And she’s a beautiful woman on a beautiful ride. I guess you could say that in the moment that I saw this that a lot of things lined up.

So I wrote. I stared at the pictures on CycleStyle Australia so long that I believed that I didn’t have her story – I had mine. And those frames they had there were just parts of my dream that kept me unrested, but hopeful. So I wrote.

When I was done, I marvelled at the story I was blessed to craft. At the story that wasn’t revealed in those images. Then I saw the source link and decided to do right by the source and click through – I had more to add to my story.

The original photographer’s website noted that this was part four in a series. I looked at the others, none had the depth that this one had (although all were very well done). This picture set had a story. She had stories with her (in her basket). And I was sitting here, getting only snapshots of what ever the story was – being allowed to dream for a moment.

Things like that cause me to write. I’ve been doing it since I was nine. I write because of a woman, because of moments, because I’m happy, because I’m angry. I wrote a poem for my father’s funeral, and another for my grandfather’s. For me, whenever I’m inspired, I can’t wait until there’s a sheet of paper or a digital keyboard – I just write (or talk into the air). And then I allow inspiration to become an allergic reaction to life around me. Scratching, itching, sneezing from inspiration’s intake until something comes out and I’m all better.

Her story is probably unique. The one that I wrote was inspired by it. I hope that poetry can cause you to be allergic to life, or at least stimulate you to be inspired in ways that should be captured as they happen in the moment.

As for the poem, its in my collection Elephants. It isn’t hard to find either, just look for the one with the scent of inspiration taken away on a bicycle.