I don’t know where this poem came from. Teaching? Writing? Frustration? Who knows? It’s here.
THE ARCHITECTURE OF STORY
We begin with a one-dimensional stick figure and a idea.
The idea towers in our mind.
Big. Big, Big.
Great American Masterpiece Big.
Now we need a character to support that idea
All the superficial stuff.
A shell really
Still dwarfed by the big idea
Then we drag in the heart
What makes it beat, race, thrum?
Then we lug the soul onto the scene.
What dark corners does it know?
What light does it seek?
Now the phallus of that idea
Looks a bit smaller
At last the stick figure has some heft
Even the beginnings of voice
And a way of walking around that hulking tower
Pretty soon she owns it,
Buys furniture for it
Sits in it
Buys groceries and cooks in it
Stinks up the place in her own particular way
Yeah, next thing you know that big idea is her idea
And you are a guest in her house.