CONGRATULATIONS TO 2021 MADNESS POETRY AUTHLETES DAMON DEAN, LINDA HOFKE, AND RJ CLARKEN!


Three of the 64 Authletes competing in this year’s Madness Poetry contest are long-time past-and/or-present Bloomers! They were chosen from rigorously competitive poets, and we couldn’t be more proud of them! Congratulations to Dean, Linda, and RJ!

Voting starts tomorrow (May 10) for all three authletes, so please consider making time to read and vote, at: Madness Poetry Matchups

Best of luck, you guys!

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Who would have thought the inauguration day of our new Spotlight feature here at Poetic Bloomings would include FOUR poets to honor! In case you missed it, here is a link to this morning’s post about Barbara Young’s new book: CONGRATULATIONS, BARBARA YOUNG! | POETIC BLOOMINGS (wordpress.com).


About Spotlight: Do you have a brand new shiny book you just got published? Have you received an honor?  Won a contest?  We’d love to hear about it, and announce it to the universe!  Or, at least announce it to our Poetic Bloomings community.   Please drop an e-mail about it, including any appropriate links (i.e., where to purchase your book, etc.).  We’ll do the rest.  Our e-mail is poeticbloomings@yahoo.com .

IN-FORM POET WITH RJ CLARKEN – SONNETINA TRE

For this week’s In-form Poet, I’m giving all you wonderful poets a gift. You see, the form Sonnetina Tre, which typically is penned in rhyme and metric form, doesn’t necessarily have to be so, as you’ll see when you read the description below (per The Poets Garret.)

“This Sonnetina form comprises of two quatrains and a couplet (Three Stanzas). The normal sequence is two quatrains and then a couplet, (One stanza short of a Shakespearean Sonnet). There is however, the mini-Dorn [Sonnet] to consider: this variation consists of a quatrain, a couplet and then a closing quatrain, (Dorn uses sestets instead of quatrains).

There are various forms of quatrain, ranging from free verse, rhyming couplets, alternate line rhyme or an envelope, so there is a certain amount of flexibility here. No meter is stated, but tetrameter or pentameter is normal.”

For our purposes, this means essentially that you are being challenged today to write a Sonnet(ish) poem (or two or three or more.) The only major requirements are that you include in your poem two quatrains with a couplet, or one sestet with two couplets or one quatrain. Got it? Good!

Here are a few of my examples:

Sweet Temptress

O, sweet icing I have to swirl on this cake:
you tempt me so, with sugar and cream.
I am full of desire which I cannot shake.
You are my confectionery dream.

Just one tiny taste, and no one should detect
it. I’ll still have plenty left to ice.
Then, just a few more spoonfuls. Oh! Have I wrecked
it? Now I can’t even frost a slice!

Well, I guess I’d better be off to the store
and hope that I can find a tub or two more!

###

Go To Sleep, Caitie

Sitting in bed with my most bestest book,
bunny ears on…let the magic begin.
This is the moment I love. Take a look…
“Go to sleep, Caitie!” “Hey Mom, in a min.”

I’m up to the chapter right near the close,
and what happens next? A conjurer’s trick!
I know how this ends, but – fun to suppose…
“Go to sleep, Caitie!” “Hey Mom, in a tic.”

I’m finally finished. Gosh, that was fun!
“Go to sleep, Caitie!” “Okay Mom. I’m done.”

###

Seven Girls

Faded background, long ringlet curls:
sign of the times from yesteryear.
The worn faces of seven girls
wearing vague smiles, mostly austere.
Updated background, tattoos and swirls:
sign of the times from modern day.
Made-up faces of seven girls:
wholly different kind of display.
Times have changed; and that resonates. It’s true…
each photograph could capture me or you.

(Note: this was also an Ekphrastic poem, because it was written to a photographic/picture prompt. In it, the screen was split: on one side were seven little girls whose appearance seems to indicate a time frame from around the early 1900s. The opposite side of the screen shows seven teen/young adult girls who are considerably more ‘modern’ in appearance.)

###

So…are you up to the challenge? I think you are. Ready…set…start poeming!

(One final note: As you read this post, please know that I am studying for finals. I won’t be able to get back to you and comment on your poems until sometime on Friday. By this post, I will have already taken two finals [on Tuesday] but am facing two more finals on Thursday. I apologize for the delays, but please know that I will be looking forward to reading your work when I finish up my school term.)

MARIE ELENA’S ATTEMPT

Keeping Watch

Joseph leads with somber grace
A weary donkey slows the pace
A restless Babe in Mary’s womb
An empty trough will hold Him soon

Anticipation grips the earth
A star will mark the foretold birth
There’s something in the air tonight
Compelling truth will come to light

The angels watch with trembling wing
Awaiting birth of infant King

© Marie Elena Good, 2013

WALT’S PEACE

SANneTinA Tres
Way up North, as the tale is told,
where the wind blows hard and cold,
the “Legend” lives amongst the pines
planted neatly in straight lines.

A jolly sort, who shakes and jingles,
one of the Merry Christmas Kringles
who with his Mrs., as I hear it,
are keepers of the Christmas Spirit.

They shine all year without applause,
Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus!

© Walter J Wojtanik, 2013

IN-FORM POET WEDNESDAY WITH RJ CLARKEN – TERZA RIMA

For the In-form Poet, December 11th, we’re going to do a rhyming form again (oh quit yer whining!) with some metrics, for…uh…good measure (and yes, I said no whining!)

Per Terry Clitheroe’s wonderful The Poets Garret (http://thepoetsgarret.com/2010Challenge/form18.html):

The Terza Rima is a wonderfully challenging poetry form of Italian origin. In the original form, there was no set meter although it is normal to keep a constant syllable count and line length. In the modern version the syllables are accentuated and usually iambic tetrameter or pentameter.

Lines 1 and 3 rhyme with each other, and line 2 sets the rhyme for the next stanza. There can be any number of tercets or three line stanzas and it is a matter of preference whether you link back to the first stanza or not. If there is no link back, it’s normal to terminate with a couplet that rhymes with the previous stanza.
The rhyme patterns are ….a. b. a…b. c. b… c. d. c. etc., finishing x. a. x.; or x. x. etc.

On Writing Terza Rima

I sit and stare at my half-penned schema
and ponder words which might ring like a song.
It’s rather hard to write Terza Rima

since every try seems to turn out wrong.
I wonder why my muse plays games with me
but gives no flash insight for which I long.

Am I taking this too seriously?
I sincerely hope that is not the case.
I think I’ve become delirious. Me.

Once again, I’ve spent too much time and space
since this form has proven to be my bane.
Nevertheless, I’ll try to show some grace.

As you can see, this is not a cinquain
but apropos of nothing, why complain?

###

White Horse Farms

On the drive home from Atlantic City,
(my grandparents moved there when I was small)
we stopped at a farm stand that looked pretty

inviting, with fresh fruit, as I recall.
My parents bought baskets of sugar plums,
peaches and summer berries from the stall.

“When the peaches are ripe, when the time comes,”
said my mom, “I’ll make a cobbler or pie
or a peach cake with cinnamony crumbs.”

Pleased, we got in the car and waved goodbye.
And suddenly, plums magically vanished…
devoured by my young sisters and I.

Matutolypea *

Does the AM put you in a mòód?
Do you wake up feeling fractious?
Should the early hours be eschewed?

Is awakening detractious:
one side more than the other side,
or is that just being factious?

There are those who say, “Woe, betide
folks who roll to the other side.”
Cranky might be the term applied.

On getting up, you must decide:
Will you be Jekyll…or be Hyde?

* The word, Matutolypea, per Worthless Word for the Day, means ‘waking up on the wrong side of the bed.’

###

And finally, if you really want a challenge, why not try combining forms, such as the example below (5-7-/5 Haiku/Terza Rima.)

This is the Season

This is the season
of bright scarves and rosy cheeks
and scents so pleasin’

‘cause we’ve waited weeks
for this time to (at long last)
come.  Small children’s shrieks

of joy waft right past
us, like the ribbons we use
to wrap up gifts.  Cast

your gaze, and your muse
will grant your wish, appeasin’
any sort of blues.

And that’s the reason
for all the hustle and fun.
This is the season…

###

So…are you up for the challenge?  I think you are.  Ready, set…start poeming!

MARIE ELENA’S ATTEMPT

Politically Unbecoming

We tend to see things differently,
But I would never stoop so low
As to treat you viciously.

I’d never thought of you as “foe,”
But that’s how you have treated me
Since partisan rifts began to grow.

I’d love to let ideas flow,
But you would just get mean so, no.

© copyright 2013,  Marie Elena Good

WALT’S TERZA RIMA

CRYSTAL CLEAR

By mid-October, she gets this tingle
through to her fingers and her toes.
The little folk begin to mingle

in their merry workshop clothes.
And in the stables things get going,
that’s the way it always goes.

Just outside, the wind is blowing,
frigid hands, but warming hearts
and even though it’s really snowing

it belies the way this season starts.
So, in the kitchen – pots and pans
and dry goods stacked on sturdy carts.

Mrs. “C” makes no demands
as Christmas baking she begins
with her tender loving hands.

He’ll be busy filling his bins
with toys for all the girls and boys,
while her baked goods fill her tins,

her one of many Christmas joys.
They called her Crystal, Mrs. “C”,
an angelic voice amongst the noise,

the sound of much activity.
But, she is clear on why she’s here:
to celebrate Nativity.

Her given name, it surely fits her,
transparent as the day is long,
for Santa Claus can see through her,

her eyes – wide open, vision strong.
This “Peace on Earth” was her grand scheme
and when she’s right, things can’t go wrong.

While children close their eyes to dream
with blankets tucked beneath their jaws,
that is when Mrs. “C” will beam.

This “Lady in Waiting” for the cause,
listening for his sleigh bells jingle.
She is his Mrs. Santa Claus!

© copyright 2013,  Walter J Wojtanik

IN-FORM POET WEDNESDAY WITH RJ CLARKEN – THE NASHER

Ogden Nash

Many of you who know me (at least in the literary sense) know I am a huge fan of Ogden Nash.  He wrote some of the funniest, wittiest, most clever poetry ever.  In honor of one of my poetry idols, I give you the Nasher.

So, what is it?  According to John Drury in his The Poetry Dictionary, a Nasher is, ‘a light-verse form, invented by Ogden Nash, in which lines ranging from very short to extremely long *rhyme comically in* couplets.’

It’s basically a license to write anything poetic that you wish, just so long as the lines (in couplet form) end in end-rhyme or even wrenched end-rhyme.  But, to the uninitiated what does that mean?  It means that you, as the poet, have free reign (if you’re so inclined) to somewhat indiscriminately add suffixes, play with homophones and even make up words.  Or not.

A famous example by Mr. Nash is from Kindly Unhitch That Star, Buddy:

Some people think they will eventually wear diamonds
instead of rhinestones

Only by everlastingly keeping their noses to their
ghrinestones.

Here are a few examples by moi:

Cognito Ergo Sum

Meditations on First Philosophy was criticized by Kierkegaarde,
saying the pre-supposition of the concept of ‘I’ showed blatant disregaarde,

since ‘cogito’ could not be a logical argument. In fact, he claimed it was logically trivial.
But perhaps that was only because Søren and René had never gone out for a drink or repast that was convivial.

So, is there something to the words: “Je pense donc je suis?”
Well, I don’t claim to be a philosopher but on this one point I feel I must agree…

if I think I am, then I am (I think), since if I pinch myself, I know it will smartes.
And if I’m at the grocery store I also think I must pay for what’s in Descartes.

###

Not an Emergency

If you miss your deadline, if you’re running late or if you just screwed up, please don’t hand me a line
because bad planning on your part does not, in any way, constitute an emergency on mine.
###

A Nasher for the Geocacher

What could be more fun than to hunt for some hidden treasure?
You can take the whole family – or some friends – or just go by yourself, and scout it out at your leisure.

All you have to do, is plug all the magic coordinates into your GPS device
and within a roughly 6 to 20 foot vicinity, the location’s pinpointed by triangulation, and it is fairly precise.

It’s all done by satellites, which are miles up in the sky
with signals that are bounced back down to earth with a full longitude and latitude supply.

But … once in the zone, the prize, you’ll have to very carefully seek,
in order to find its concealed spot in a tree hollow, trestle, rock formation, crevice, culvert or the bed of a creek.

But once you find the cache, which should be in some sort of waterproof container or box
you can open it quickly, since generally, there are no deadbolts, or combination locks.

Once inside the ‘treasure chest’, you’ll find all sorts of trinkets and gewgaws,
and key chains, Travel Bugs, Geocoins, breakfast cereal toys and other jolly fooferaws.

The idea is to take something, but to leave something else (of similar nature) in its place
for the next Geocacher, on another treasure hunt, who will find and open that particular treasure case.

Additionally, there’s usually a logbook and a pencil provided for you to record
your visit to the Geocache.  You can mark how you found it, and how you claimed your reward.

But please be mindful of that bauble pot, and when finished, kindly put it back where you uncovered it.
Then someone else can play the game, since they will be happy to have, at last, discovered it.

###

So…are you ready for this gnasher mission?

Ready…set…go!  Start your poeming ignition!

MARIE ELENA’S NASHERS

A Tattle Tale

“Twitchy” Mitch is tattle-rich.
I’d take the twitch and ditch the snitch.

© copyright 2013, Marie Elena Good

On Nasher!

Revealed:  Ogden’s former career?
’Twas Nasher, the Rhymin’ Reindeer!

But this abecedarian authoritarian’s verses
Were aeronautically challenging.  Curses.

© copyright 2013, Marie Elena Good

WALT’S NICE BIT OF NAUGHTY NASH

SANTA NASHED

From the 24th of Decemberer
as long as I can rememberer,

I had a certain thing for her
(since early in the Spring, I’m sure)

A loving lass with loads of class,
and a slightly full well-rounded ass,

most playful with a bit of sass,
as Northern woman have I guess.

In social circles she would mingle,
and watching her would make me tingle

to the very tips of all my fingles,
she makes my toes and my bells jingle.

Immortal as the day is long,
these northern women are built strong,

and sing a slightly different song
(though her voice will hit most notes all wrong).

Up here upon this frozen isthmus,
all the elflets prepare for Christhmus,

while I canoodle with the Misthus
under mistletoe to kiss this

lovely woman, Mrs. Claus,
The reason I always return of course.

My refreshing little Christmas pause
when my journey’s done, I’ll bare my Claus

(she likes me like that, just because
for I am her jolly Santa Claus!)

© copyright 2013, Walter J Wojtanik

IN-FORM POET WITH RJ CLARKEN – OULIPO

oulipo pic

Shall We Play a Game?

For this week’s In-form Poet, we’re going to be going in an unusual direction, in that there are a number of ways you can approach your poetry writing using this particular ‘form.’

Actually, form (singular) is a bit of a misnomer since, there are several different invented forms connected with the Oulipo style of poetry writing (oo-lee-poé; acronym for “Ouvroir de littérature potentielle,” meaning ‘workroom in a convent for potential literature’).  So actually, it is more subgenre than any particular form, per se.

According to John Drury, in his book, The Poetry Dictionary, this was a, “…poetic movement founded in 1960 by a group of poets and mathematicians, led by Raymond Queneau.”  He further explained how this group used games and numbers to work their poetry, with forms like the (eeeek!) Sestina, Cento, and the infamous Rhopalic Verse (you know, where each word has one more syllable than the last, hence the nickname ‘Snowball’).

Some other fun forms in this subgenre are:

Holorhyming – every syllable must rhyme. (Why cry, sly shy guy?)

Lipogram – text that eschews one or more letter.  (Nixing the letter ‘e,’ for example.)

Permutational poem – verse in which the lines can be read in any order.

Tautogram – where each word begins with the same letter.

Antonymic translation – where antonyms are substituted for words in a text, thereby giving a sentence, paragraph, etc. an opposite-ish meaning.

Boolean poem – where you use ONLY the words which are common in TWO distinct poems to create a new poem.

Haikuization – where (ready for this one?!) a poet keeps the rhyming parts of a poem, but gets rid of the rest of it.  Drury’s example here is:

Take the last stanza of Yeat’s ‘Sailing to Byzantium’ and turn it into this: “Never take/any natural thing./Make/enameling/awake./Sing/of Byzantium/to come.”

Perverb – a mixing of the first half of one proverb with the second half of another one.

One of Drury’s examples here is, “Still waters/starve a fever.” …and… “The Lord helps those who/gather no moss.”

S + 7 – a poem where a poet replaces each substantive noun in a text with the seventh noun after it – in the dictionary.  The example given here is: Andrew Marvell’s “Had we but world enough, and time/This coyness, lady, were no crime” might become, “Had we but worry enough, and timeserver,/This crab laetrile, were no crinoline.”  Obviously results may vary, depending on the dictionary you choose to use.

Palindrome – a phrase or sentence which reads the same way, front to back, or back to front.

Portmanteau word – a nonce word, per Lewis Carroll, which combines a part of one word with a part of another.

Spoonerism – accomplished by switching the initial sounds of words with nearby words.  (Invented by the Reverend W.A. Spooner, 1844-1930.)

Your job, you brilliant In-form poets, is to use one or more of the above, and create your own Oulipo masterpiece.  (Or several of them!)

Here’s a couple of examples by yours truly:

Double reversing Rhopalic Verse:

Nocturne for a Nighttime Sky

At
nighttime,
fantastic
constellations
magnificently
pandiculate,
fulfilling
stellar
dreams.
###

Palindrome (and by the way, ‘aibohphobia’ means fear of palindromes!):

Aibohphobia

Ah no, is it?
Aibohphobia!
T’is I on?  Ha!
 

###

S + 7:

Souvenir from a Lost Love

Jack found a gold locket
in his rear blue jean pocket
when he went to the laundromat.
He opened the locket
and found quite a shock – it
belonged to his ex, Wretched Pat.
Jack thought he would walk it
to the pawn shop to hock it,
telegraphing to her, “Yo! Take that!”
Then, he said he’d just chalk it
up to life and not knock it
and then he sledge-hammered the darn thing flat.

Okay…that was the original poem I wrote (quite a while ago, actually.)  Here’s the ‘new & improved’ version:

Sow Bug from a Lost Lower Case

Jack found a gold lockstep
in his rear blue jean podagra
when he went to the lavabo
He opened the lockstep
and found quite a shoemaker – it
belonged to his exaggeration, Wretched Pat.

Jack thought he would walk it
to the pay load to hock it,
telegraphing to her, “Yo! Take that!”
Then, he said he’d just chamberlain it
up to light and not knock it
and then he slight-of-handed the damn thing flat.

podagra – gout in the foot

lavabo – a large stone washbasin, also, ritual washing of hands

 

###

So…think you can ‘play?’  Good.  Ready…set…start poeming!

MARIE ELENA’S HOLORHYME

Oulipoo

Sue’s flue’s Lou’s new loo.
Pew.

(Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons; Carl August Ehrensvärd, Birth of the Poet, 1795)

IN-FORM POET WITH RJ CLARKEN – Ae FRESLIGHE

For this week, I thought it might be interesting to go with a quatrain a la seven.  The Ae freslighe (ay fresh lee) is a fascinating, but fairly challenging Celtic poetic form.

As the superb Terry Clitheroe of The Poets Garret (http://www.thepoetsgarret.com/celtic1.html) states:

Ae freslighe: (ay fresh lee):

Each stanza is a quatrain of seven syllables. Lines one and three rhyme with a triple (three syllable) rhyme and two and four use a double (two syllable) rhyme.  The poem should end with the first syllable, word, or the complete line that it began with.

x x x x (x x a)
x x x x x (x b)
x x x x (x x a)
x x x x x (x b)

Here are a couple of examples by moi:

A Walk in the Lark

Whereby, I write humorous,
quirky, offbeat and funny.
My poems are numerous
but don’t make me much money.
Still, I write such laughable
poetry because witty
work makes me feel affable,
but broke, so more’s the pity.
Some say this stuff’s easier
than if I had to rely
on real jobs, but cheesier
simply works for me, whereby.
###

No Lack of Attention

 “Life is denied by a lack of attention, whether it be to cleaning windows or trying to write a masterpiece.” ~Nadia Boulanger

Whereas, lack of attention
can wreak havoc on pizzazz,
your eyes see no pretension:
you must focus now, whereas…
…create a fine masterpiece,
as your words become soulmate,
clear window, or golden-fleece.
You must focus now.  Create.

###

MARIE ELENA’S lAmE FRESLIGHE

Arresting Arrhythmia

I’m against this principle
Of leaving rhythm unfenced.
Rhyme three, then two syllables?
What have I come up against?
Iamb, I love completely
And in her defense I scram
-ble to save her discreetly.
Un-victorious, I am.
© copyright 2013,  Marie Elena Good

MARIE ELENA’S ANTI-AE FRESLIGHE

Dear Ms. Clarken:

I do not like Ae freslighe, Ma’am.
I do not like her sans iamb.
She messes with my rhythmic ear.
I wish that she would disappear.
I do not like Ae freslighe, Ma’am.
I’d rather eat green eggs and spam.

😉

© copyright 2013,  Marie Elena Good

IN-FORM POET WITH RJ CLARKEN – TRIOLET SONNET

Because so many of you are Sonneteers AND so many of you are fans of the Triolet, here’s a hybrid kind of poem for this week’s challenge. Oh yes! See, you all know how certain words can be portmanteau? (Gosh, I love that word!)
Well, that noun/adjective was tailor-made made for this particular form.
Yikes, you say. But fear not, because I know you are up to the task – and besides, it’s fun!

So, here goes: According to Terry Clitheroe’s The Poets Garret ,
Whilst looking at the structure of the Triolet it was realized that if two stanzas were added together with the two refrain lines being the link there would be an octave and a sestet: a natural Sonnet.

The rhyme pattern becomes: A. B. a. A. a. b. A. B. a. A. a. b. A. B.

It would work with the A & B lines being completely repeated or just a phrase or just the rhyme word repeated. The a and b are of course just standard rhyme. There is no set syllable count, although eight syllables is common with most of the French forms.

Got that?

Good!

Here are a couple of examples by yours truly…

Forget I Mentioned the Spork

Twirling pasta with just a fork?
It neglects the job of the spoon.
You might consider an odd spork,
but it’s shy of being a fork
or spoon. Besides, it lacks the torque
you get with each. A spork’s immune
to twirling well, unlike the fork
which, when based (and twirled) on a spoon,
in concert works. Don’t be a dork:
Twirl your pasta with spoon AND fork
(and forget I mentioned the spork.)
If pasta’s messy, please festoon
your place setting (beneath your fork)
with napkins, along with your spoon.

###

Knapsacks

Inside my daughter’s blue knapsack
there’s more beside her books. There’s stuff
like make-up, and yesterday’s snack…
…but wait! There’s more in her knapsack.
A strange note from some boy named Jack,
a broken bracelet (called a cuff),
some crumpled papers and a sack
of old gym clothes. But there’s more stuff.
A letter home from Missus Mack
awaits retrieval from ‘Knapsack
of Doom.’ How does she stay on track?
I tell her, “This is quite enough.”
She laughs and dumps out her knapsack
and shrugs. “My brother’s got MORE stuff.”

###

Obviously, I’ve taken a light tone (as is generally my way) but despite the rhyme, you can use this form to express a wide array of events, emotions and stories. So, I’m gonna stuff all my ‘stuff’ into my portmanteau (or knapsack) and wait to see what you do with this form.

Ready…Set…Start poeming!

MARIE ELENA’S TRIOLET SONNET ATTEMPT

Pipe Down. I’m Trying to be Thoughtful.

Hush now. Hush … I’m trying to write,
Which takes a lot of thought, you know.
I’ve got to keep my goal in sight.
Hush now. Hush … I’m trying to write.
I’m trying hard to be polite,
But need to focus brain cells, so
Hush now. Hush … I’m trying to write.
This takes a lot of thought, you know.
Don’t want a brawl; don’t want to fight.
HUSH now. HUSH … I’m TRYING to WRITE!
I’m NOT annoyed. I’m NOT uptight.
My stack is NOT about to blow!
But you MUST HUSH … I’m trying to write,
And that takes THOUGHT, I’ll have you know!

© copyright 2013, Marie Elena Good

WALT SNEAKS IN AGAIN TRIOLET

In The Night

In the night, she calls my name
to warm and comfort her, in the night.
It feels so right as our hearts inflame
in the night. She calls out my name
and I know things will never be the same,
no beacon will ever burn so bright,
in the night, she calls out my name
to warm and comfort her. In the night,
distance comes between us and it’s a shame.
In the night, she calls my name
and yet I will be close by; a player in true love’s game
lifting our hearts to the highest heights.
In the night, she calls my name
to warm and comfort her, in the night.

© copyright 2013, Walter J Wojtanik

IN-FORM POET WITH RJ CLARKEN – MIRROR SESTET

Mirror Sestet picture

Because the Byron’s Sonnet brought up a little discussion of sestets and octaves, I thought it might be interesting – and challenging – to try another form of the six-line sestet.  The description and rules of the Mirror Sestet are shown below, but the explanation and further examples can be found at Shadow Poetry .

What is kind of cool is that this form can be rhymed, or not – whichever you prefer.  And, as no metrics were mentioned, you can use whatever sort of metrics that please you.

The Mirror Sestet, created by Shelley A. Cephas, is a poem that can be written in one or more stanzas of 6 lines each. The specific guidelines for this form are as follows:

The first word of line 1 rhymes with the last word of line 1.
The first word of line 2 is the last word of line 1
and the last word of line 2 is the 1st word of line 1.

The first word of line 3 rhymes with the last word of line 3.
The first word of line 4 is the last word of line 3
and the last word of line 4 is the 1st word of line 3.

The first word of line 5 rhymes with the last word of line 5.
The first word of line 6 is the last word of line 5
and the last word of line 6 is the 1st word of line 5.

The Mirror Sestet can also be written in non-rhyme.  All rules must be followed except there is no 1st and last word rhyming.

All right?  Write, all!

And on that note, here’s my mirror(ish) attempt:

Reflections

“You use a glass mirror to see your face; you use works of art to see your soul.” ~George Bernard Shaw

O glass which shows my face, you know…
…know that you’re my reflection. O
glass, o mirror, there’s impasse…
…impasse because you are just glass
and not a work of art, first hand…
…hand that paints a masterpiece, and

I long to see my soul.  My eye…
…eye is only human, so I
attempt beyond, but I’m exempt…
…exempt from that which I’d attempt.
Still, I can gaze.  It’s what I will…
…will I find me?  I’m searching still.

###

MARIE ELENA’S ATTEMPT

Online Dating Service

You got a call from God-knows-who
Who may be playing tricks on you.
He said he’d meet you here at three.
Three came and went without a he.
There may be cause for pause. Beware.
Beware! There are some creeps out there.

© copyright 2013, Marie Elena Good

(Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons (http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Albert_Roosenboom_Two_children_playing_dress_up.jpg; 19th Century)

IN-FORM POET WITH RJ CLARKEN – BYRON’S SONNET

So…yes, we’ve done a couple of weeks of short, fun, easy (ish) syllabic poems.  But…I heard a bit of grumbling about that, so for October 30th, we’re going to do something that is somewhat more traditional – ta da…the Sonnet.  But not just any Sonnet.  Oh no.  (Besides, that was done already here.)

This time, we’re going to do a variation on a theme, so to speak – Byron’s Sonnet.  According to Terry Clitheroe, the showrunner of The Poets Garret (http://www.thepoetsgarret.com/sonnet/byron.html) this particular Sonnet can be in any meter (iambic pentameter, tetrameter, etc.)  But there are rules.

Da Rules: Byron’s Sonnet

“Byron’s sonnets are obviously influenced by the Italian form rather than the English, and possess an octave and a sestet.  The octave comprises a progression of three rhymes,

a-b-b-a a-c-c-a; but it’s the sestet that makes it unique: d-e-d e-d-e.”

Sonnet to Genevra

Thine eyes’ blue tenderness, thy long fair hair,
And the wan lustre of thy features – caught
From contemplation where serenely wrought,
Seems Sorrow’s softness charm’d from its despair-
Have thrown such speaking sadness in thine air
That-but I know thy blessed bosom fraught
With mines of unalloy’d and stainless thought-
I should have deem’d thee doom’d to earthly care.
With such an aspect, by his colours blent,
When from his beauty-breathing pen-cil born
(Except that thou hast nothing to repent),
The Magdalen of Guido saw the morn-
Such seemst thou-but how much more excellent!
With naught Remorse can claim-nor Virtue scorn.

~George Gordon, Lord Byron

###

Here’s an attempt by yours truly:

Night Stroll

“The night walked down the sky with the moon in her hand.” ~Frederick L. Knowles

 There was starlight for illumination
when Moon and Night went for a little stroll.
“Look up!  It looks like a big ice cream bowl,”
said Moon, on viewing a constellation.
“I think it is just collaboration,”
the Night replied, “’Tween a spoon and a dish.”
Moon grinned broadly.  “Night, it is as you wish.”
With a bit of prestidigitation,
Moon waved his hand, and a dish did appear.
On the dish? A Neapolitan brick,
which caused a bit of celestial cheer.
“Moon, however did you manage that trick?”
asked Night, “You are a clever engineer.”
Whereupon, Moon gave Night a kiss real quick.
###
So…are you up to a bit of a Byronic challenge?  Ready…set…poem!

MARIE ELENA’S ATTEMPT
INDIGENT
I find my heart is easily deceived,
And vain attempts to emulate my Lord
Just seem to leave my spirit in discord.
I try in spite of what I have believed –
No good apart from God can be achieved.
So why do I attempt this my own way,
While knowing I’ll most likely go astray?
How could I be so foolish and naïve?
Lord, sculpt my heart as putty in your hand;
Affix my soul, and do not let it roam.
Reveal Yourself, that I may understand
How fully You’re my heart, my hearth, my home.
Without You, I can keep not one command –
I need you so much more than I can poem.

WALT’S MISTED PASSION

YOU, IN THE MORNING MIST

The misty morning dew-fall lifts its veil,
the blushing bride of night begins her day,
and bathes in sun light’s ever-cleansing rays.
Your beauty does espouse this without fail,
my song of love and passion’s fervent tale,
and in the shadows we recline in love,
our blessing from the Mighty Hand above.
For into cool blue eyes my soul will sail.

The heart’s desires should not be restrained,
for passions burn like fire in our hearts,
and endless fonts of love, yet so contained
are not immune to Cupid’s “fatal” darts.
Here in the morning mist true love is gained,
reclined in meadows, you and I remain!

© Copyright 2013 – Walter J Wojtanik

IN-FORM POET WITH RJ CLARKEN – PENSEE

Pensee pic

Image courtesy of Fresh Plans http://www.myfreshplans.com/2010-08/vampire-lesson-plans/vampire_garlic/

So, like…wow!  We had such a fabulous response to the short fun form Tetractys, that I decided we should maybe try one more week of something similar.  With that having been said, for the In-form Poet of October 23rd, let’s have a go at (don-da-don…) the Pensee.

The Pensee is a syllabic poem, which is great if you like to count.  (No vampire puns intended.)  For a single stanza (and yes, you can write more if your muse compels you) is 2 – 4 – 7 – 8 – 6.  But, there is a slight trick to it.  Line one is your subject line, line 2 is your description, line 3 is the action line, line 4 is your setting and line 5 is your final thoughts on the poem.

If you are curious to see how it can work, there is actually a Pensee generator, which allows you to plug your words into boxed fields.  Then, all you have to do is press the button – and voila! Instant Pensee.  It was designed for school kids, in order to help facilitate their writing, but it’s fun to play with, nonetheless.

Here’s the link: http://ettcweb.lr.k12.nj.us/forms/newpoem.htm

(If you decide to try it, the above link will take you to the main page.  Scroll down ‘til you find Pensee and click on that link.  You know the drill.)

Anyway, here are a couple of examples by yours truly:

Paparazzi Fodder

Light gnomes
flash in my eyes
as the photographer shoots
a portrait of me walking off
with this week’s tabloid news.

###

Pensée for a Nudist Colony

I heard
some nude resorts
are taking off the gloves to
fight rivals for more customers,
a bare necessity.

###

So…just like Descartes once famously said, “Je pensee; donc je suis…eh?” *

Go Pensee!

*The phrase was Cogito ergo sum, which in French is actually Je pense; donc je suis – and in English translates to mean, I think; therefore I am.

MARIE ELENA’S PENSEE PRACTICE 

Sophie
Cute cuddle bug
Closed-eyed smile, hugging Grandpop
Perfectly framed by the doorway
Picture-perfect moment

© copyright 2013, Marie Elena Good

Jesus
Warm beating heart
Showing us how to use it
Tangibly, right here where we live
I can’t help but love Him

© copyright 2013, Marie Elena Good

WALT’S IMPASSIONED PENSEE

JOURNEY OF REASONABLE CAUTION

She stands
heart full of fire.
Consumed by her soul’s desire,
for she knows steps she has taken
could be so mistaken.

She walks.
Passions inflamed.
She wants his muse to notice.
Sharing the desire to dance
if they just took the chance.

She basks
in the sun’s warmth.
She stops, feeling its embrace
like his arms over the miles.
She stands there and smiles.

She knows
passions can burn.
She wants to feel all she can,
no promise or demand, just heat;
an all-consuming love.

She sighs.
She wants this more
than anything else she knows.
He continues to grow on her,
touching every moment.

She steps,
moving closer;
feeling alive with passion,
his words entice her to want more;
lead her to their dance floor.

She feels
alive and well
desired. Fired by him
who writes love as he writes his heart,
letting the journey start.

© Copyright 2013, Walter J Wojtanik

~~

How interesting that the very week we are clowning around, Robert Lee Brewer invites us to the circus!