Monday, March 5, 2018


Photo by Bobbi Emel Wilmoth. Used with permission.
Concentrate enough on one thing and the background becomes a blur. Sometimes that’s healthy and productive. Staying focused provides clarity and helps you accomplish tasks and reach your goals.

In 2016 I participated in Ellen Bass’s and Pam Houston’s "A Glint of Light on Broken Glass" writing retreat near Hope, Canada. No phones, no radio, no television, no Wi-Fi. With time dedicated to writing in the peaceful setting of the Inn at Lake Connamarra, I learned new techniques, sharpened skills, and wrote three new poems and a piece of flash fiction. Meeting accomplished writers and making new friends added to my perspective and growth.
Focus can be a positive distraction. In a lengthy MRI session, unable to move for an extended period of time, a golfer I know replayed whole rounds in her head. (Amazing how golfers can recall every stroke.)

Sometimes, being so focused is not helpful. All manner of things can be happening around you, and you never realize it. You just don’t see it because you’re preoccupied. I’m reminded of a friend who was shocked when his wife found someone else. He was so intent on his career, he neglected home and family.

Focusing on the negatives means you often miss out on the positives. Zeroing in on the positives can change attitudes, actions, and productivity.

The Prompt
Write your poem this week thinking about where your focus lies. How has staying focused affected your life? What sidetracks you? Consider what you have observed about the benefits and the damages from being focused.

Word Bank
The main thing

Visual Prompt

Please share the link to your poem (or post your poem) in the comments below. And, if you're on Facebook, post it to Poets on the Page. We're looking forward to reading your work.

Annis Cassells is a writer, poet, life coach, and teacher.  She divides her time between Bakersfield, California and Coos Bay, Oregon. She is a member of Writers of Kern, a branch of the California Writers Club. See Annis’s blogs at and and her website at

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