I write on the bus a lot. If I’m on the bus and not reading or on twitter, I’m writing. I find it’s a good way of sneaking in some writing everyday. I’ve written some awful poems on the bus (“London tourist, / I’m sorry I’m scowling in your prized photograph, / the first red double decker bus / you ever saw”) but I’ve written some passable bits as well (UNQUOTABLE AT THIS TIME). There’s something about the constant stream of new images, small human dramas and shop fronts that is incredibly evocative. Countryside just as good as the city for this, I’m just writing from a Londoner’s perspective. You just need to open your eyes and watch the scenes play out. If you write what you see you’ll be capturing a unique and honest portrayal of a particular moment in time, a rushed pencil sketch. Readers will react to this, readers can always sniff out authenticity in writing and it makes for a richer, more immersive read.
If you’re on the bus, train or even stationary on a bench somewhere I recommend doing this to engage with your surroundings.
Start every line with the phrase
The morning of ….
The afternoon of ….
The evening of ….
Obviously depending on the time of day, and write about what you see. Write a list poem like this.
The morning of the broken window
The morning of the orange bike helmet
The morning of the traffic diversion
The morning of the fragrant pastry
If you like, you can email me what you’ve written (Edward.LongMA@gmail.com) and I’ll post my favourite one at the beginning of the next exercise (there MAY be an incredibly cheap prize…!)