Just as a blue tip of a compass needle
stills to north, you stare at a pencil
with sharpened point, a small soapstone
bear with a tiny chunk of turquoise
tied to its back, the random pattern
of straw flecked in an adobe wall;
you peruse the silver poplar branches,
Since Horace penned the first ars poetica, poets have used this form to closely examine themselves as subject, their relationship to the poem, and the act of writing itself.