When I was a kid, I loved watching those Saturday afternoon spaghetti westerns with cowboys, a town sheriff, swinging saloon doors and the customary cowboy gunfights…
Folks have asked me from time to time to share some insight into the imagery and ideas I use to deliver particular messages in my poems.
I love using word pictures and different ideas to present a new perspective or my feelings about a particular situation in my poetry. It’s a time honoured tradition that even Jesus made good use of, so I work hard to get it right.
I’ve just posted a new poem called ‘The Duel’ on my WordyNerdBird Writes blog, so I figured that’s as good a place as any to start.
When I was a kid, I loved watching those Saturday afternoon spaghetti westerns with cowboys, a town sheriff, swinging saloon doors and the customary cowboy gunfights. There were always pretty girls wanting both cowboys to win, but everyone knew that wasn’t the way those things worked. The bartender spent more time polishing the bar than any bartender in any pub I’ve ever seen, but hey – he had to be doing something when he wasn’t serving the cowboys their shots of dutch courage.
It’s the gunslinger imagery I’ve drawn on in ‘The Duel’.
We all know that movies don’t reflect the truths of real life as often as we thought they did when we were kids. But that’s the beauty of writing: I can make my characters do anything I want them do when I’m wielding the pen. If I can make them deliver a lesson while they’re doing it, even better.
So, I conjured up some cowboys – or cowgirls, if you prefer. I put spurs on their boots and pistols in their holsters. And I made one of them challenge the other to a duel.
Hopefully, you’re interested enough to the rest for yourself.
Cowboys. Resentment. Gunfight.
I’d love to know what you think of the poem, but I’m also keen to know if you’re interested in reading more insights like this. Don’t worry, though – I have no intention of explaining every poem. I’d like to think my poems do that pretty well for themselves.