December sees me writing a poem a month. I know some of you are wondering how I can come up with 31 different things to write about this month, but I've found the poetry I enjoy the most is about common things--or nothing at all e.g: Billy Collins' Tension posted below for your reading pleasure. This poem has always stuck with me because 1) I heard Billy Collins read it live and so whenever I read it, I can hear that bored-but-sarcastic tone I think he intended it to be read with and 2) it doesn't take itself too seriously--no angry flying spittle or impossible inuendo. It just is what it is, and that's generally how I write my poetry. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do:

Tension by Billy Collins

"Never use the word suddenly just to create tension." -- Writing Fiction

Suddenly, you were planting some yellow petunias
outside in the garden,
and suddenly I was in the study
looking up the word oligarchy for the thirty-seventh time.

When suddenly, without warning,
you planted the last petunia in the flat,
and I suddenly closed the dictionary
now that I was reminded of that vile form of governance.

A moment later, we found ourselves
standing suddenly in the kitchen
where you suddenly opened a can of cat food
and I just as suddenly watched you doing that.

I observed a window of leafy activity
and, beyond that, a bird perched on the edge
of the stone birdbath
when suddenly you announced you were leaving

to pick up a few things at the market
and I stunned you by impulsively
pointing out that we were getting low on butter
and another case of wine would not be a bad idea.

Who could tell what the next moment would hold?
Another drip from the faucet?Another little spasm of the second hand?
Would the painting of a bowl of pears continue

to hang on the wall from that nail?
Would the heavy anthologies remain on their shelves?
Would the stove hold its position?
Suddenly, it was anyone's guess.

The sun rose ever higher.
The state capitals remained motionless on the wall map
when suddenly I found myself lying on a couch
where I closed my eyes and without any warning

began to picture the Andes, of all places,
and a path that led over the mountain to another country
with strange customs and eye-catching hats
suddenly fringed with little colorful, dangling balls.