A Poem For The Middle Of January

Centrepiece Writing Studio - Shannon Marshall - Victoria, BC

Poetry can be pretty intimidating. I agree with you 100 percent  –  both as a reader and as a writer.

When I do write poetry, it’s usually only to scribble down some half-completed piece of a thought… the equivalent of a musical riff I can’t get out of my head.

And yet. I still love the idea of poetry  –  the cadence and musicality, the imagery, the resonance.  The challenge of saying so much within a small space. That feeling of familiarity you’re sometimes left with at the end of a satisfying poem. 

These are the same elements I infuse into my own work, always striving for maximum impact.

I went deep into the archives for this piece, written by a much younger version of who I am today. I had just moved to a new city to start my Creative Writing major, and the record-breaking rainfall that winter was overwhelming. My feet were damp for months.

This poem crossed my mind several times over the past year, probably because you can easily scratch out the word January and replace it with something more of-the-moment… like: quarantine. Or pandemic

I promise this poem’s approachable, and maybe you’ll even find you can relate…



Halfway through January.
Remember how, when we were little,
Wile E. Coyote would run straight off the edge of a cliff, and could run on sheer nothingness until
he realized he’d run out of ground?  

And with both panic and acceptance, he’d drop
and so would the tones of the whistle in the background,
until finally the only trace of him was a perfect coyote silhouette,
embedded in the dust below.  

I always thought if he’d just kept going, and never slowed down enough to notice, he could’ve made it clear to the other side and he’d have shown that stupid road-runner once and for all.  

But he always stopped,
and he always fell.  

And now, the ink in my pen flows slower,
and the poems in my journal drone on,
and the sun… where is the sun?
Even the sun wants to stay in bed all day.
Now I can’t help but notice. 

I’m dangling.  

Halfway through January.

Leaf - Centrepiece Writing Studio - Shannon Marshall - Victoria, BC

Shannon Marshall

Hi - I’m Shannon, a speechwriter for all occasions, and owner of Centrepiece Writing Studio. I write heartfelt speeches, handcrafted just for you.

If you need a hand finding just the right words for your toast, eulogy or milestone celebration, I've got you covered. I'll help you tell your story.

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Shannon Marshall - Centrepiece Writing Studio - Shannon Marshall - Victoria, BC

Centrepiece Writing Studio is grateful to operate on the traditional lands of the Lekwungen people, now represented by the Songhees and Xwsepsum (Esquimalt) nations...
The glorious land commonly known as Victoria, BC.

With great respect for the earliest residents of our shared coastal home, CWS strives to uphold our mutual values of storytelling and environmental stewardship.

Flower - Centrepiece Writing Studio - Shannon Marshall - Victoria, BC