Final words

Let's wrap up. At this point you should have an "Idea File" with remaining ideas for poems. (Every poet should have more ideas for poems than he or she has time to compose.) You should have a lighter "Work in Progress" file and a heavy "Old Drafts" one.

Now it's time to reward yourself. If this is your first time through the text, the good news is that you need a new file: "Final Drafts." If this is your second or third time, you have such a file already and now will be able to add more poems to it. In any case, congratulations.

In a minute, it will be time to close this book and reflect on what you have learned thus far. Get out your journal and describe your poetic experience. If you have read this book more than once, describe your experience again and review your previous journal entries to determine how you have evolved as a poet and how you hope to continue to evolve.

Remember, the objective is to create art that will endure —and that takes time. If you have patience, you not only will be able to compose a total poem . . . but you will become a total poet.

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