Dear America, you sparkling motherf***er.

Here’s a patriotic poem I wrote for the 4th of July (on American time). The accidental bloopers are pretty hilarious slash would make my mother lose faith in my future prospects, so I’ll make a blooper reel as soon as I can. Enjoy the poem!

The Metaphorical Seduction of Confectioners’ Sugar

As a household item, confectioners’ sugar (perhaps you know it as simply “powdered sugar”) is no big whoop.  There’s nothing special about it.

But as as writer I fear I’ve become a little obsessed with it.  Why?  Because writers are always looking for new things to say–new images, sounds, combinations, etc… You name it and we’re looking for it.  And I have only once in all of my reading come across confectioners’ sugar.  Now I can’t remember that short story’s name, but I vividly remember the ghost of a chef coming to the protagonist in his dreams, moaning “I can’t remember” with his hands covered in confectioners’ sugar.  That image stuck with me and catapulted me into a secret obsession.

In my novel, I managed to sneak it in around the middle:

metal pots and pans wildly clattered behind the food cart and a puff of white smoke jumped up beside him.  A small, blond kid with freckles leapt to his feet, his clothes layered with breadcrumb batter and confectioners’ sugar.  He coughed as he stumbled out of the cloud of powder and jumped at the sound of other boys spotting him.

And just today, I managed to use it in a spoken word piece called, “The Baker’s Son”:

Poems fall from trembling lips and his words push and pull and push and pull like jumping clouds of confectioners’ sugar until even the dinner plate moon presses against the skylight to listen.

The second example is why it’s become a curse.  The rhythm of that line is pretty good for the frantic section it lives in, but on closer scrutiny, it doesn’t quite make sense…  I can see the quick puffs of confectioner sugar, but I’m not sure they push and pull.  And I’m too attached to the repetition of “push and pull” to chuck it for less emotional (albeit more accurate) verbs and, for the baking theme’s sake, I don’t want to change out “confectioners’ sugar.”  I will admit that it used to be “…pull like cumulus shelves of confectioners’ sugar” and I finally dared to delete that delicious alliteration.

I’m a stubborn prisoner of my own simile.  Normally, I am quick to erase lines and start fresh without regret, but for now, I’m a captive, a dupe.

I have been fully seduced.  How about you?