Some days a poem just writes itself. This was one such. From a few notes jotted while I was visiting my gran in her “retirement home”, the tone quickly established itself & made me laugh out loud as the various descriptions presented themselves.
in the quiet blue of my gran’s tiny
room a photo of a long-haired kiss-
curled cow-licked feminine-faced lout;
smug in a purple-striped shirt under
neath an all-white knitted jumper
(as was, I hope, vaguely fashionable
in the Miami Vice trashed late 80’s);
set off with a heart-shaped silver bolo-
tie for fuck’s sake
although i recognise
his confident cock-eyed grin, his too-
smooth clean-cut chin, & once-pride&joy
full-but-already-thinning head of fine
wavy hair, my stomach double knots
in grief & pity — for he does not yet
know all he has, nor all he will lose
NaPoWriMo continues despite a long day prepping for & running a production meeting. So the following formula: very tired + little creative juice = quick pome.
you brought autumn into our bed
which was fine while the leaves
were still soft & smelt of earth
— now they crackle when i snore
& you are long gone though
i refuse to change the sheets
a lonely : silhouetted against : the sunset : the city lights : the full moon : the sea : walking an old dirt road : the dawn of time : & its ending : all of these are her : sparks at her feet : lava footprints : laughing : always back turned : always leaving
Been partaking in much thought (as I do this time every year); as well as a Firefly marathon, so themes of home & family have been percolating round for days. (The pome itself took about an hour; finding the right picture, close to five.)
Somewhere there is a house
whether facing a storm on a cliff ;
lost in a forest ; birdhigh in a tree ;
or underground browntangled among
ancient roots ; atop an old stone tower ;
even above an ocean where mountains
once used to be, before being washed away
But somewhere there is a house ;
where when i walk in, i have always been
where i know and am known ;
where there is no need to play roles ;
no need to keep pretending all is well ;
where those long lost are as they were
i know there is a such a house, somewhere
If I said I understood everything I wrote, I’d be lying. Today’s effort comes from a form of poetry-generation; a pome-making game I guess. The steps are simple.
1. Make a series of lists (using prompts).
2. Choose one element from each list.
3. Find a way to combine them in one pome.
surveying the damage
through the window
yellow leaves cover the lawn
on the table bread is dark
brown like chocolate
— the wind blew all night
forcing doors & knocking
knick-knacks from sills
too cold to emerge
from beneath blankets
so the water did what it must
— spend the morning
throwing all my books
into a pulping machine
they’re useless now
What with tomorrow being tomorrow, & plenty of work to do to get ready for it, today’s poem & Game are both going to be as brief as poossible. I’ll be using a variation of one of the Word Games I’ve played before, Last Line (Gone) – except this time it’s First Line (Gone; to be the last line of my poem) :).
The line is taken from The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein. A truly glorious wonderful book that made me laugh, made me cry, made me weep buckets. Told by Enzo, who is a dog, this is a book that is a delight to read & one which will no doubt linger for days.
the art of not facing the truth
it’s easy to pretend
i’m waiting for you
easy to say
easy to argue
next time will be better
easy to acknowledge
now you are gone
are all i have
First line of The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein. “Gestures all that I have; sometimes they must be grand in nature.”
This began as a draft in January. I have redrafted, edited & posted it today for obvious reasons. It is the first poem this month not generated via Word Games.
we live in a world, where, when a beloved famousity
dies, social media bloodbaths into a whirlpool : wailing
wallowing, teethgnashing, pedastooling, & deifying —
alongside attacks, assassinations & ruthless debunking.
since we have capacity to celebrate celebrity demises
en masse, it has become de rigueur to do so : vehemently
& publicly with status updates & changed profile pics
alerting the indifferent world of your immense loss.
trolls rumble from caves, dragging into the light
their democratic right to demonise — reminding us :
fame isn’t bestowed solely on saints & that as much
darkness lurks under the skins of those we idolise.
meanwhile, the day-to-day tragedies go ever on, untweeted
— as do the friends, daughters, grandsons of those left …