Poem Tryouts: To Succeed and To Fail

12 May

7:46 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to The Today Show, waiting for David Duchovny and his backing band, Weather

Hello, everyone. I love it when I derail my own planned prompts. I follow a band called Weather. I follow them because the band was formed with two of my former students. One of them is off doing great things musically, in Africa. The other is still with the band, which happens to be David Duchovny’s backing band on his first album. They are on The Today Show, this morning, and the latest incarnation of Kathy & Regis, tomorrow. Yes, the prompt.

I got to thinking about success during awake moments last night. What is a measure of success? The band, Weather, stayed together after graduation from college, they tour regularly, and now, they are backing Duchovny on his first album (which leads to them being on television). Sounds successful to me, but what happens if their goal was to not get into the more wearying strata of the music world? Can they count their good fortune (and hard work) as failure? Is success always a good thing? Are there degrees of success?

What is failure? Is it always a bad thing? Maybe failure in one thing leads to new paths which turn out to be what you really wanted to do, but didn’t know it. Are there degrees of failure?

Our entire lives are measured by successes, or failures. Either we do the measuring, or someone, a teacher, a boss, does the measuring, or a larger group, a committee, a population of voters, does the measuring. From the moment we wake, ‘I didn’t sleep well last night’ to the moment we go to bed , ‘I made the steaks just right. Another second and…’ we measure.

Oy! Too much philosophising with only one cup of coffee. I was clearer in my head, last night. However, I know you. You’ll take this and run, even while wondering what the heck I am talking about.

Main point for you to focus on: Convey to us a truth about success, or failure. This can involve something personal, or something you saw, or something you read. You can deal with one, or both. You can be somewhat abstract, or entirely concrete.

I will see you Thursday for links and things; Friday for the week’s roundup of links; and next Tuesday for our next prompt.

Happy writing, everyone.


Posted by on 12/05/2015 in exercises, poems, poetry


Tags: , , ,

24 responses to “Poem Tryouts: To Succeed and To Fail

  1. julespaige

    12/05/2015 at 9:20 am

    I’ll have to come back to read the rest, but the title of your post…
    (I can’t help it, really) just matches with what I wrote for MLMM today:

  2. margo roby

    12/05/2015 at 10:53 am

    When it happens to me, ViV, that’s my favourite kind.

  3. whimsygizmo

    12/05/2015 at 11:33 am

    • Misky

      12/05/2015 at 12:10 pm

      I hope lots and lots of people this one…

  4. barbcrary

    12/05/2015 at 12:44 pm

    I am not writing poetry for at least one more day. We count this as a success at the moment. ๐Ÿ˜€

    • whimsygizmo

      12/05/2015 at 12:47 pm

      Good for you, barb. I took Sunday and Monday off this week, to breathe. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • margo roby

      12/05/2015 at 2:37 pm


  5. Hannah Gosselin

    12/05/2015 at 10:17 pm

    Thank you, Margo – your post really digs deep and got me thinking…much appreciated. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • margo roby

      13/05/2015 at 7:47 am

      It’s an intriguing topic with so many sides.

  6. purplepeninportland

    12/05/2015 at 11:32 pm

    I thought about this a great deal, although it is a short poem.

    • margo roby

      13/05/2015 at 7:48 am

      That’s why the prompt, Sara. Once I began thinking about the subject, I couldn’t stop. So much to consider.

  7. Mr. Walker

    14/05/2015 at 9:41 am

    I, too, had so many thoughts on and about this prompt, but here is what I have now:

    • margo roby

      14/05/2015 at 1:01 pm

      You know me. Serious never has to come into it.

  8. Mr. Walker

    16/05/2015 at 1:55 pm

    Margo, you were right. Here is number three:


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