POETIC BLOOMINGS

POETIC BLOOMINGS, a site established in May 2011 and which reunites Marie Elena Good and Walter J Wojtanik to help nurture and inspire the poetic spirit.

PROMPT #272 – STOPPING TO WINDOW SHOP

Image result for window shopping

 

We’ve all found ourselves caught up in the practice of window shopping at least once in our lives. It is more apparent at this time of year, with the many quaint “shoppes” and kiosks set up for the Holiday season. Whether you are trolling your local mall, or traipsing down Main Street in search of a gift, let your imagination lead you to that window. What are you window shopping for? You’ll know it when you see it. Or it’s a secret desire for something. Imagine yourself in another time period or recall an excursion from your past. Take it wherever you wish. What kind of store are you browsing and what is that item? Your poem lies behind that sheet of frosted glass!

MARIE’S REAR VIEW WINDOW:

McKELVEY’S

When I was a child, Christmas season included a trip downtown to window shop. Mom and Aunt Peg, my sister,  our Grandma, and our cousins went together.   My favorite was McKelvey’s Department Store, where our moms let us kids go to the fifth floor – the toy floor! Countless beautiful dolls, doll houses, trains, erector sets, life-sized stuffed animals, puzzles, paper dolls, coloring books and crayons galore, and a huge gumball machine. Imagine the magic! Not just a section, but an entire floor devoted to toys.   And imagine the disappointment when Mom and Aunt Peg came through the elevator doors, and we knew it was time to leave.

No purchase needed
when you’re dreaming with cousins
and Santa’s in town.

© Marie Elena Good, 2019

 

WALT’S GIFT SHOPPE:

 

THE TRAIN STOP TRAIN SHOP

since I was a young lad
I had this fascination with toy trains.
no matter the gauge or line, I find myself
lost in daydreams of halcyon days.
steam vs. diesel, the mode didn’t matter,
life in miniature has its allure and I get
mesmerized whatever the size. thoughts
of recreating local landmarks remain.
my nose pressed to the front window always
leaves a stain. I’ve always loved trains.

 

© Walter J Wojtanik

FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION – THEY’RE ONLY WORDS

dictionary

WEASEL AS MANY OF THESE WORDS INTO YOUR POEM/STORY:

 

MECHANIC, SINISTER, SPAGHETTI, BATHTUB,

NEWSPAPER, BARREN, SHOE

INFORM POET – HORATIAN ODE

The word “ode” comes from the Greek word oide meaning “to sing or chant” Odes were originally performed to music. Odes are usually written in appreciation or contemplation. They are almost always written about a significant event, or someone or something that the poet admires.

The Horatian Ode is simply a stanzaic form in which all stanzas are structured in the same pattern at the discretion of the poet. (rhyme, meter, number of lines/stanzas etc.), more technically it is “nonce stanzaic” or a “homostrophic” ode (ode made up of same structured stanzas created specifically for that poem).

 

This excerpt is an example from the Horatian Ode on Cromwell’s Return from Ireland by Andrew Marvel (1621-1678):

 

The forward youth that would appear

Must now forsake his Muses dear,

——-Nor in the shadows sing

——-His numbers languishing:

‘Tis time to leave the books in dust

And oil th’ unusèd armor’s rust,

——-Removing from the wall

——-The corselet of the hall.

 

These are written in quatrains made up of rhyming couplets, (Lines 1 & 2 – iambic tetrameter, and Lines 3 & 4 iambic trimeter and indented.) The parameters of each poem is up to the poet, but must maintain the same structure throughout.

 

WALT’S HORATIAN ODE:

 

ALWAYS SANTA

I was born and raised near the North Pole,
I have Christmas running through my soul.
—One in the line of Christmas Kringles,
—just that thought gives my fingers tingles.

A Santa Claus just like my father,
and his before him, if you bother,
—to appreciate your Christmas lore,
—and stories of our travels galore.

Legend passed throughout generations,
a symbol known in many nations.
—I’m the keeper of the Christmas Laws
—I shall always be your Santa Claus.

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2019

PROMPT #271 – GROWN-UP CHRISTMAS LIST

We’re entering my favorite month of the year where tradition becomes a key player in the season. When we were children we wrote out our Christmas Wish List. Now as we’ve gotten older, Natalie Cole’s rendition of “Grown-Up Christmas List” comes to mind. What rises to the top of your “GUCL”? Make that the focus of your poem this week!

MARIE’S LIST:

Though only one item,
my order’s not small:
It’s the gift of compassion
to profit us all.

© Marie Elena Good, 2019

WALT’S LETTER:

 

ME, THE SANTA I PROPOSE TO BE

If I could be the man I claim,

(you know the man,

You know the name)

I’d bring great joys

To girls and boys

(Of all ages, shapes and sizes)

I’d wear my favorite disguises

And let my heart fill with love

Above all else, that’s what it’s about.

I would give all I can to those who need it,

I would find hunger and feed it,

seek out homelessness and house it.

I will be the agent of all that Christmas espouses.

I’d be out in my red velvet suit,

Centuries old, a real beaut.

Happiness will be the greatest gift

That would lift all hearts

To the highest heights.

And when we make our flight,

My wish would be complete.

And I love the click of reindeer “paws”

I wish that I were Santa Claus.

© Walter J Wojtanik

INFORM POET – KOUTA

A short while back, Robert Lee Brewer highlighted the Kouta poem at the Poetic Asides Blog.

In Robert’s words:

“The only poetic mention of kouta I’ve found (online or in print) is in Robin Skelton’s The Shapes of Our Singing, though I did find a post on Japan Info that claims it was a traditional song of geisha. Both sources also interpret the word kouta as meaning “little song.” Skelton provides two variations of these little songs.”

Kouta (Version 1): quatrain (or 4 lines) with the following syllable count per line: 7575

Kouta (Version 2): quatrain with the following syllable count: 7775

No other rules apply concerning rhyme, seasonal words, subject matter, etc.

Today, we’ll be trying our hand at this form.

 

WALT’S KOUTA:

SANTA CLAUS (Version 1)

This man claims to be Santa,

it’s one of my flaws.

I believe it to be so.

I am Santa Claus.

 

SANTA CLAUS (Version 2)

There are worse things I could be,

nothing wrong with who I claim.

Shakespeare asked “What’s in a name?”

I am Santa Claus!

 

PROMPT #270 – A WHOLE POCKETFUL OF THANKS

We celebrate Thanksgiving Day later this week. A traditional Thanksgiving Day (in the States) includes many shared experiences. We wake up to the Thanksgiving Day Parades which culminates with the arrival of a close personal friend of mine! 😉 There’s a slew of American football to fill the time until the meal that has been prepared (in abundance) is ready. There’s the effects (lately disputed) of L-Tryptophan inducing that nap afterward. And for those so inclined, it’s off to hunt down “Black Friday” shopping deals. But, the primary focus (after we give thanks) is the food.

So, here is a little exercise for you. Take this phrase:

TURKEY WITH ALL THE TRIMMINGS

In the letters of these words, find about six new words and use those in your poem. Ambitious folk need not stop at six, but that’s the base line we will use. Then write your poem.

 

MARIE’S WORDS:

At times, “thanks” seems like
a key that may turn a whim
to reality.

© Marie Elena Good, 2019

Every letter is contained within “turkey with all the trimmings.”  Good thing I love to write in 17 syllables. 😉

WALT’S WORDS:

ONE FOR THE BIRD, by Walter J Wojtanik

I always take the seat against the wall.
I can view the whole room and am willing
To confine myself, to tell the truth.
This Holiday is rather thrilling
(dare I say filling?) It’s Thanksgiving’s turn
To numb me like good scotch whiskey.

Thankfulness aside, the focus is the turkey.
With harvest decorations on the wall,
I can feel the season ready to rapidly make the turn
Toward thoughts of Christmas. I’d be willing
To wager it will be quite thrilling
If you’d like to know the truth.

Since the days of my youth
I’ve loved this day greatly, rife with a stately turkey.
Mashed potatoes smothered in gravy is thrilling,
And candied yams? I am a fan! I stand tall
For it all.  Cranberries are the sweet and tart, God willing
I will partake in it all. For it I yearn.

I may even have a turn
At the red cabbage this time around. It is the truth.
I shy away, but I may have some. I’m willing
To try it at least once. Did I mention the turkey?
More intoxicating than whiskey, I go to the wall
For a good bird! I find it thrilling!

Although, I’m not in it for the thrill.
I’m willing to say, I’ll wait my turn
Extricate myself from the wall
Seat, and eat a meal that in truth
I had the major hand in preparing. Turkey!
And the family is more than willing

To let me make it! And that chore I always will
Assume. Therein lies what to me is most thrilling.
To feed the family with a well basted turkey.
(Keep it moist and it’ll never burn).
And I’ve never left the giblets (That’s the truth!)
They could hang my turkey pictures on the wall!

On Thanksgiving, I’m willing to go to the wall.
There is much truth in that. It is most thrilling
and I never have to turn to whiskey!

 

My found words for this turkey of a Sestina were: wall, willing, turn, thrilling, whiskey, truth. I took liberties with the whiskey. It quickly became ‘turkey’. And it kept me sober! 😉

 

***

 

I’m sure I speak for Marie (we do share the same brain after all!) when I wish those of you celebrating Thanksgiving, a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving Day. We are both so thankful for all of you talented and poetic friends. You are all so gifted and it is an honor to host and work alongside you all! Thank you!

From Marie:  I must add my hear hear and yes sir and could not agree more!

I also need to just say …
WALTER WOJTANIK!!!!!   You are the absolute KING of Sestina!  You leave me shaking my head in awe of every one you write.  And do you know what I love best about this one?  “I can view the whole room.”  That is so you, and I love it.  (And I bet you already knew that. 😉 ) 

FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION: IN FOR THE LONG HALL(WAY)

Hallway

You are presented with a long hallway. At the end of it is a door. There is something behind that door that you anticipate. Or that you dread.

Begin your story or poem with:

“THE HALLWAY WAS SILENT…”

INFORM POET – TRIOLET

Things are settling back to normal, so we’ll return to our poetic routine. It’s Wednesday, and it’s time to fit back into a form!

Today we explore (once again), the Triolet. The triolet is a very brief, tightly rhymed poem that, like the pantoum, takes part of its structure from the repetition of entire lines. A triolet is eight lines, as follows:

1st line A
2nd line B
3rd line a (rhymes with A)
4th line A (entire 1st line repeated)
5th line a (rhymes with A)
6th line b (rhymes with B)
7th line A (entire 1st line repeated)
8th line B (entire 2nd line repeated)

 

WALT’S EXAMPLE TRIOLET:

STAY!

I wish this Christmas spirit would stay,
it is a feeling that should not depart.
Throughout the year until Christmas Day,
I wish this Christmas spirit would stay,
it would feel like less work and more play!
I, Santa Claus, keep Christmas in my heart.
I wish this Christmas spirit would stay,
it is a feeling that should not depart.

© Walter J. Wojtanik 

PROMPT #269 – SNOWBOUND

We’re dealing with the cold. The boiler hopefully will be working by this morning (being installed Thursday) and getting us out of the single digit wind chills. But the topper of it all is the barrage of snow with which we’ve been bombarded. Spent Tuesday morning shoveling 12+ inches up in Ottawa to make the ride home and then put the snowblower to work for another 12 back home!

Sick of the snow already? Trust me, Santa will make due. How about you?

Today, I present you with a list of snow-related words. Choose one (or do a flurry of them) and write an Acrostic poem based on that (those) word(s).

snowy – snowfall – snowflake – snowdrift – snowball – avalanche – snowstorm – snowboard – snow-white – snowbound – snowman – snowshoe – snowmobile – snow-blind – snowcap – snowblower – snow-melt – snow line – blizzard – ski slope – flurry

MARIE’S DRIFT:

SNOW WHITE

She
Nibbled
On
Wicked
Witch’s
Harvest,
Ill-advisedly.
The
End.

© Marie Elena Good, 2019

WALT’S SNOWPILE:

SNOW BORED, by Walter J Wojtanik 

Sick of it already.
November providing an
Over abundance of the
White stuff.

Bound to home,
Our boiler since
Repaired, it becomes
Easy to doze and
Drift to sleep!

 

PROMPT #268 – BABY, IT’S COLD OUTSIDE

It’s getting to where the temperatures are getting ready to wreak havoc if they haven’t already. Anyway, it’s getting cold. I would know. My boiler went down and must be replaced. So, my old bones are feeling every bit of it until it’s done. So what better than to warm my heart and the rest of me. Write a warm poem. Stir the hearth and send it my way. It will be greatly appreciated.

 

MARIE’S FIRE:

It’s football season!
Chilly air, and something to
get fired up about!

© Marie Elena Good, 2019

WALT’S HEARTH:

COLD IRON, by Walter J Wojtanik

I’d prefer a red-hot poker,
as opposed to something like cold iron.
I abhor the cold of late,
I hate it if you must know,
and the glow of red-hot has got
great appeal, a real warmth
that escapes me. Much more
of a chill will kill me,
never thrill me as it once did.
I’ve hidden my true feelings
when dealing with the cold.
As I get older, I’d as soon
taste the warmth of love’s sting,
than to stick my tongue
on something like cold iron.

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