Poetry Friday: What Confidence Knows About Me

It’s the first Friday of July, which means my critique group is responding to our monthly challenge. This month, Heidi suggested that we use “What Grief Doesn’t Know About Me” by Gail Martin as a mentor poem. Grief was not an emotion that I was interested in spending time with this week, so I chose to write about something else.

What Confidence Knows About Me

That my belief in myself is brief.
The slightest upset can 
shatter it,
scatter it,
like a sheaf of papers in the wind.

That my assurance has no endurance.
That doubt is always waiting
to unsettle me,
like a thief,
ready to rob me of my mettle.

That an approving nod, a job well done,
Can renew my fortitude,
adjust my attitude
and, like sunlight on a leaf,

give me strength to grow on.

Draft, © Catherine Flynn, 2021

Photo by Flash Dantz on Unsplash

Please be sure to visit my brilliant critique group partners to read their responses to Heidi’s challenge.

Molly Hogan at Nix the Comfort Zone
Linda Mitchell at A Word Edgewise
Heidi Mordhorst at My Juicy Little Universe
Margaret Simon at Reflections on the Teche

Also don’t forget to stop by Laura Shovan’s blog for the Poetry Friday Roundup.

11 thoughts on “Poetry Friday: What Confidence Knows About Me

  1. OK, that’s pretty cool how you flipped “doesn’t know” to KNOW. That’s so like you, to find the positive angle. And, your poem reflects that…starting out with the things that aren’t so great — shifting to the positive. I love your take on this prompt. It’s got punchy, short lines too. The message is delivered effectively. I’m giving you fingersnaps, nods of approval, and a well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Whoa, Catherine! I love your riffing on all the belief>leaf words (and how they swerved away from grief), and the short lines in the middle of each stanza, and the vulnerability this poem shows. Please go beleaf in yourself today! ; )

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Catherine, this is a beautiful take on Gail Martin’s mentor text. The internal rhyming is so effective here, and this twist on “go on” is everything to me today: “strength to grow on.” Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It is a change that feels so honest, Catherine. I suspect quite a few people hide what they know about themselves. I love the hope in “like sunlight on a leaf”!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Great topic for a Gail Martin style poem. “My assurance has no endurance/ that doubt is always waiting.” I can relate to that, but there is value often in the ability to doubt yourself, as annoying as it can be.

    Liked by 1 person

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