poetry

Look ahead

I am giving myself this gift

every day,

think back

sit in memories

as a child

bright dreamer with

quick perceptions

different ideas

the girl who held

secret worlds

in her head

rich and strange

anticipate

could not explain

or share

only a mother would

tamp them down with care

fear

from love,

to protect

a small one’s delicate

intellect

in a bigbadwolf, uncaring world

just

realised

one day

do not have

to listen

to all they say

some things are merely

manifestations

of their afraid

and not for ears

to hear

oh

I should reach for the stars

Anyway

so maybe

a soothing

a rebellion

a way to live apart

became

a river, turned to flood

when it’s gone, and drained away

left varnish cracked

after years of wear

and hot breath

stripped back

raw

dead skin, was thick with dread

protect / pierce

to show

the gleam instead

of all those forgotten worlds

revealed

thoughts, light, streams,

ahead

 

This is a long, rambly poem that is a casualty of not enough time and too much in my head today! The prompt was: to write a poem of gifts and joy. What would you give yourself, if you could have anything? What would you give someone else? Oddly, this is quite appropriate to most of my activities today. Too busy “doing” not enough time for “poeming” – that is probably a good thing sometimes though.

I loved this photo I took this morning. By me!

Possibilities

 

See all those windows

I’ll never look out of

the way the rain stains

concrete like a tidemark

dispersed landocean

of sweetwater

a heartbeat, monitored

spikes and stalactites

mountains in the distance

that won’t be climbed again

if ever they once were

and fat fulsome blossoms

like cheeks stuffed with popcorn

springtime possibility,

impossibly lush

too wonderful to last

 

Today’s prompt: to write a poem of the possible. A a poem that emphasizes the power of “if,” of the woulds and coulds and shoulds of the world.

Photo by Uriel Soberanes on Unsplash

Wired silence

 

I’m wired for sound

reading books from a supplier named for the rainforest we’re destroying, a queasy joke like

enjoy the silence

 

these days I read mostly e-books (same supplier, same quease) and my music is stored

elsewhere, while shelves sit full of dusting jewel cases, oh! that sounds more precious than MP3s

I’m wired for sound

 

can’t listen when I’m writing, so many hours of

words falling quiet through my fingers, thudding soft into keyboard squares; sometimes my thoughts pause –

enjoy the silence

 

composing lines in my head on the morning tram, smells aggressively of RedBull and cigarettes

produced by twitchy men I protect myself from with cheap headphones, thank goodness

I’m wired for sound

 

sometimes when I can’t fall asleep from stress, I try the meditation app,

she says soothingly ‘simply notice sounds around you’ but it’s 22.47 in Zurich, Oerlikon

enjoy the silence

 

I run away from my life, I run into my life, I run into the forest

and there is my life waiting for me underneath my legs my two feet keep going, one in front of the other, and it’s music I’ve found

I’m wired for sound

to enjoy the silence

 

 

 

Today’s GloPoWriMo Day 5 challenge was a difficult one. But I love the challenges! To write a poem that incorporates at least one of the following: (1) the villanelle form, (2) lines taken from an outside text, and/or (3) phrases that oppose each other in some way. If you can use two elements, great – and if you can do all three, wow!

I managed this using “Wired for Sound” (originally Cliff Richard but I’m thinking of the Bi(f)tek version) and “Enjoy the Silence” by Depeche Mode.

I have to give an extra shout-out to Napowrimo for putting me on to this incredible mashup by poet Kyle Dargan of the Lord’s Prayer with Grandmaster Flash’s “the Message” – wow!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjzaGqGqkMY

Photo by Sai Kiran Anagani on Unsplash

 

sad little sonnet

eyelashes plucked
and the orange-peel breath
of Town Hall viaduct
smells like time left
behind, it’s not strange
to weep when tired
or look to rearrange
everything, rewired
and I wonder, lonely
if a fraud?
what if I only,
always, did what I adored?
Who cares, who cries
in empty offices full of sighs

 

Today’s challenge: write your own sad poem, but one that, like Teicher’s “Son“, achieves sadness through simplicity. Playing with the sonnet form may help you. Not sure this is a real sonnet. I followed the rhyme structure but I feel like it isn’t ‘right’

Photo by Edgar Castrejon on Unsplash

Snowclouds in April

 

A lifetime in one day

clouds toss the sun about

and the wind bats the sail

how oppressed you feel

 

As a ribbon stretches

across my page

shiversilver in afternoon light

shafting through tinted glass

of tramstop topwindow

and the whole patchwork years

unfurl in a breezy

meadow like a picnic blanket

or a dancing plastic bag

pick the spots

glinting rivers and

sequin puddles shining

moments, vignettes, entire novels

maybe mundane but it never felt that way

the sky up there so grey

full of snow and rage

 

Today’s GloPoWriMo prompt: write something that involves a story or action that unfolds over an appreciable length of time.

Photo:  Devon Rogers on Unsplash

Anima / Animus

 

what could have been

an invisible line

between our eyes

never enough time

 

no private spaces

or empty lands

our dance in plain view

never touch hands

 

in our minds

that curl of yearning,

keening, never knowing

what were we learning?

 

I’m late today with posting. I wrote it this morning but forgot my notebook and it’s been such a busy day. Argh. This is not good, feel like I’m falling behind already!!  The prompt was: to write a poem that resists closure by ending on a question, inviting the reader to continue the process of reading (and, in some ways, writing) the poem even after the poem ends.

Photo by Anete Lūsiņa on Unsplash

The runner

Just when you get started

is

have I got a tissue?

did I bring lip balm

or forget keys

the good socks! Ah

better not

go back

the message is

not the medium

but

things’ll be dire

if I turn, must

run this track

so go, go go,

and put those

fickle-fuckle thoughts aside

of props

all you really need

is two feet, running

and

the vital missive

survive!

bright and clear

like wings, like hope

held fast (so fast, don’t stop) and

carried safe, in mind

 

 

It’s poetry month again! Yay!! I am so excited to participate again this year. Lots of changes afoot for me, which I’m sure you’ll hear about through the month, so it’s nice to do something familiar. Today I followed the early-bird prompt:  write a poetic self-portrait. And specifically, we’d like you to write a poem in which you portray yourself in the guise of a historical or mythical figure. Does that sound a bit strange? Well, take a look at this poem by Mary-Kim Arnold, “Self Portrait as Semiramis,” or Tarfia Farzullah’s, “Self-Portrait as Artemis,” and perhaps you’ll get a sense of the possibilities. I started looking up cool goddesses, like Hel and Hathor, but nothing quite clicked. In the end I went for that nameless first “Marathon” runner who saved his people with an heroic effort. I guess I’m feeling pretty noble about my quest! Also a good ‘beginning’ poem, I feel. Plus, as I may have mentioned, I have become a runner and it’s helped me survive some difficult times. OK, enough about me!

Photo: https://unsplash.com/@we_are_rising

Slip

I will slip in under your radar

to a room bathed blue in TV-light

where pictures haunt and flicker

empty, and the sound turned quiet

edges of my teeth touch, catch

weak magnet unsticks

clings

I will slip in like the noise

of soft rain wakes you up

next morning wonder

how a bright wall

gets impossible to see

in slabs of summer sun

when shadeblooms shock the eyes

I will slip in, I will slip in to your pocket

finger me like a half-forgotten coin

smooth from use, warm

savouring the many chances and

ways to spend

 

Recording (poem changed a bit and have updated it above) https://soundcloud.com/user-808707280/slip

 

Photo: https://unsplash.com/@aajanita

Passionfruit

There’s a tangle of tears

trapped inside like

one of those wire balls

of fairy lights

 

quivering like a mouse

with stone-giant hands

how to hold the precious things

while the rest gets torn down

 

walking as ghosts

puppet-shadows loom behind

grotesque approximations

of life split in two rhymes

 

somewhere cracked open

like a passionfruit, purple rind

waxy, strange, so different to

the gold ooze inside

 

What I want to say is

there’s an ever-distanting, displaced

version of me

and I’m worried about her because

she’s going on her way

and I’m here trembling

like a rodent

who’s been caught in sharp light

not sure whether to run or die

start a new life

my brain held in

rock-giant hands like

a bowl of bright-smelling ooze

studded with shiny black seeds

and those softspider veins

while cave-light shadows

make small mockery

of insignificant me

with a snarl of tears

caught inside

like a barbed-wire bottle

of fairy lights

 

 

 

Photo: https://unsplash.com/@californong