Sunday, April 26, 2015

STEPHEN TALKS TO HIMSELF ABOUT HAIR AND OTHER POLITICAL DEVICES

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NaPoWriMo says to try writing a persona poem today. A poem in which the speaker is not me. Does this not lead to the assumption that I tend to write in my own voice? And whose voice might I otherwise be writing in? Ah well. I won't quibble. I shall take on the voice of...???

Here we go:

Stephen Talks to Himself About Hair and Other Political Devices


I have a good head of hair.

I know what's best but I'm not going to tell you.

Sometimes when I'm alone in my room

I close the curtains and lock the door, obviously,

and stand before the full-length mirrors

on the closet, then slowly turn about.

I preen. I do, before I go back to my office

and cut off some sucker of a program's funding.

By now it's time for a snack.

Washing my hands after a visit to the lavatory I study my hair.

I have a good head of hair.

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A CLERIHEW FOR TED

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Note to self: Blog updates look so much prettier when there's a photo on them.

Note to self: Do not make mention of photos when you have to go look for one and you don't even know what you're looking for. (Queue U-2.)

Note to self: Don't spend the hour and a half you had to get a poem up — four lines, for crying out loud! — looking a photos, even if you haven't seen half of them before.

Okay. So Yesterday's (as it's just gone midnight-o-five here) NaPoWriMo prompt was to write a clerihew, a four line poem that names the subject in the first line. Which got me to thinking about what rhymes with Harper.

But then, looking at all those photos. And then these two. Of my beloved, coming into where I was doing something on the computer, much as I am now. Can you hear him saying, "Whaaaaat?" when I said something wifely and supportive like, "Forchrissake look at yourself! Don't touch anything!"

So why not a clerihew about Ted?



Ted Crosfield thinks no one can tell
where he's been hiding out; oh well,
he cannot understand from whence the dust
that covers him from head to toe comes from. He only knows it must.

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Friday, April 24, 2015

WESTMINSTER BRIDGE REVISITED

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We are officially on the homestretch with this poem-a-day thing. Six left, after today's effort which is, as per the fine folk over at NaPoWriMo, to write a parody of an existing poem. So here's mine, with apologies to Wordsworth:



WESTMINSTER BRIDGE REVISITED


Cold, dank and miserable it seemed to be
as London buses scurried to and fro
an icy wind did from wretch’d Scotland blow
and run its freezing fingers over me.
Fog settled over town and from the sea
rain slithered through the fields that farmers sow.
The ugly tenement houses row on row
stretched far without redeeming pond or tree.
The famous sights:  St. Paul’s, Trafalgar Square,
the palaces, the subway and Big Ben
were gloomy looking, dirty, sure to rend
from hearts like mine what love was hiding there.
       Clutching the throat and blinding the eyes, the air
       moved stagnantly around the stagnant Thames.

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Thursday, April 23, 2015

BLUE DECK INVITES INSPECTION IN THE LAYING OUT OF CARDS

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Today's NaPoWriMo prompt is to find a deck of cards, any kind will do, pull a card, free-write about whatever moves you for five minutes, then turn the result into a poem.

Cards I've got. I have OH Cards and Medicine Cards and Karma Cards and Angel Cards and regular old 52-pick-up cards, and even a deck from Louisiana complete with recipes!

I think I'll go with the image cards from the OH Cards. Of course, depending on how you look at the box they come in, they could be HO Cards. And that would be something entirely different.

Shuffling.

And...we have a winner. It appears to be a picture of someone's hands laying out cards. Oh look! Here it is now!


I won't put you through the excruciating pain of a free-write. It's enough I write most of my April poems directly onto my blog. Some of them are not very successful at all, and this would be one of those but I got stuff to do here so here's the poem I got:


BLUE DECK INVITES INSPECTION
IN THE LAYiNG OUT OF CARDS


Blue — stuck here
on rug, on floor,
ungraceful yet promising
the act of reading,
the art of being read.

Why blue, these cards,
why yellow, that tray, or rug,
could be oilcloth, who can say?
Why face down; to save face?
Whose? And where and what outcome and why?

On the sideboard napkins fidget,

wait for treats to wrap around.
Hands preoccupied while dealing
think of sapphires, bands of silver,
cards laid out like tournament treats.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

FOR A MOMENT— A PASTORAL

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Fifteen minutes until midnight. Can she do it?

A pastoral poem, to celebrate Earth Day.


FOR A MOMENT— A PASTORAL


wind steadies and the birds fall silent
       leaves cease their shimmerdance
              frogs in the slough out back stop talking

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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

SLIPS AND STONES

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1218
Today, an erasure poem. Of course, I'm looking for a specific little pamphlet that was on my desk until I cleaned it off before we went away. Do you think I can find it today? Of course not. Can I think of any other source text I'd like to use? Ditto.

1422
Found a link to Shirley Jackson's The Lottery and pulled the last 750 or so words to use as source.





















Started the elimination dance. Got rid of lots of words!



2330
Until eventually, this:



SLIPS AND STONES



slips                papers            breeze            
glance                              keep each one

box the box 
hold tight       wonderingly

friends switching slip  
red and overlarge 
snatched out and held

slip sound edges
the way open
                        open
                        
slip 
then look, unfolded, 
                         blank

hushed, show slip
out of hand

black   black night
heavy and astir

finish forgotten ritual

remembered stones

made ready; stones

blowing stone


small stones gasping

stones and pebbles

held out

fair stone

fair


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Monday, April 20, 2015

KNOW WHAT NO NO

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NaPoWriMo, you're just the best! Today's challenge? Write about what you know.


KNOW WHAT NO NO



You know the difference between the last intense
stage of labour and the sting of a disturbed sting ray,
and it isn't much.

You know the reason birds sing and sing
they can't not
they have something to say and they're saying it.

You know there are more greens than there are names—
chartreuse, sage, hunter, pastel, forest, blue,
and none of them describe the nascent aspen on the mountain.

You know the way it feels to wake up in the morning
and not know where you are
or who that is.

You know your life is more than half gone
and look! those hands, that wrinkled face,
those inward-facing toes.

You know you've loved it here on Earth
stinky cities, stinkier outhouses,
a mountaintop, a farmer's field in Spain.

You know you are loved and all is possible.
Hockey's on, the playoffs at hand,
and night descends as Equinox approaches.


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