I circle the numbers of the poems that hold my attention. I want to go back to them later. The first circle is faint. The ballpoint pen is dry.
The second circle is darker. The friction of drawing the first, faint circle has awakened the pen. The third circle is faint again. I have waited too long. The fourth will be darker again, or lighter, depending on the time elapsed and amount of heat and friction awakening the ballpoint.
This poem is one in a series of poems about applying liquids or semi-liquid substances to surfaces. Imagine a poem about basting an uncooked piece of meat with a barbecue brush. Another about... well, use your imagination for that.
The book of poetry I was reading was astonishing, yet what seemed to interest me was the response of the pen. A triviality. This is not quite accurate, since this poem imitates (badly) the tone of what I was reading. What was interesting was that this extraordinary poetry allowed me to perceive the triviality of the pen's response (or failed response) as an occasion for my own writing.