Today’s prompt is a fairly simple one: to write about a particular fruit – your choice. But I’d like you to describe this fruit as closely as possible. Perhaps your poem could attempt to tell the reader some (or all!) of the following about your chosen fruit: What does it look like, how does it feel, how does it smell, what does it taste like, where did you find it, do you need to thump it to know if it’s ripe, how do you get into it (peeling, a knife, your teeth), do you need to spit out the seeds, should you bake it, can you make jam with it, do you have to fight the birds for it, when is it available, do you need a ladder to pick it, what is your favorite memory of eating it, if you threw it at someone’s head would it splatter them or knock them out, is it expensive . . . As you may have realized from this list, there’s honestly an awful lot you can write about a fruit!
There’s a pithy phrase attributed to T.S. Eliot: “Good poets borrow; great poets steal.” (He actually said something a bit different, and phrased it a bit more pompously – after all, this is T.S. Eliot we’re talking about). Nonetheless, our optional prompt for today (developed by Rachel McKibbens, who is well-known for her imaginative and inspiring prompts) plays on the idea of stealing. Today, I challenge you to write a non-apology for the things you’ve stolen. Maybe it’s something as small as your sister’s hairbrush (or maybe it was your sister’s boyfriend!) Regardless, I hope this sly prompt generates some provocative verse for you.
Oh, thank God! I was afraid that this might be one of those Erasure – found poetry prompts that I suck at find so frustrating. Thank goodness it’s just a prompt about good-old stealing! Yay for stealing!
Musky as a lovebed the morning after. As blue a sky vintage toxins could allow. Remnants of when playing it cool was disrobed. Careful not to drop breadcrumbs, out slipped the tongue, afraid of what could be left unexplored, lost. What was said, now muddled; tangled, dangled sheets. Secrets spilled upon linen, taunts veiled in smiles. Favors returned in earth-suckles and shudders. Reflections! How urgent! Come through! Come, midnight! Fat and black, moonless regrets are swallowed whole. At sunrise, only faint aroma lingers, pushed aside by a faint whiff of breakfast as only briefly, hunger displaces hunger. It all makes sense when thinking of that first kiss. Still don’t know of the why, but glad of the how. ***
NaPoWriMo Day 8: “…peruse the work of one or more of these twitter bots, and use a line or two, or a phrase or even a word that stands out to you, as the seed for your own poem. Need an example? Well, there’s actually quite a respectable lineage of poems that start with a line by another poet, such as this poem by Robert Duncan, or this one by Lisa Robertson.”
NaPoWriMo nailed it with this one. They even provided me with a Sylvia Plath Twitter Bot, and anyone who reads me probably had an inkling that it was either going to be Plath or Poe.
over time, trauma is a thief of joy two fingers of bourbon mug the mugger spring oozed into her room nonchalantly embracing us with equanimity her voice cooing we shouldn’t do this now her lips tasting of why haven’t we yet the fire in her almond eyes read mine we chose the same musk-knotted adventure music was jealous of our harmony you introduced me to Martin Gore and I didn’t get him, but through you, I did I’m jealous I missed your London punk scene and all the parts that broke you apart we were both trauma and broken things we been runnin’, done ran, till we bumped heads finding joy in tending each other’s shards I lived to cut myself open on you seducing you into seducing me say I won’t rise to meet your velvet taunt your tongue had already run us through I marked you as mine when your teeth pierced me by the thinnest skin of goddess sinew we loved, clear-eyed in the blackest of night as the box-springs sang je t’aime, je t’aime you took my life each time I surrendered only to find your dear Eeyore renewed I’ll re-steal this joy, returning to us delightful, bottled beautiful struggle thus was the elixir of our short spring ***
NaPoWriMo Day 5: “Twenty Little Poetry Projects,”developed by Jim Simmerman.The challenge is to use/do all of the list below in the same poem, or as many as possible. This was extremely challenging, but also super engaging. I kicked off my shoes, threw out the punctuation, meditated on a topic that frequents my thoughts, (I was born a dirty old man. Sorry/not sorry) and started tinkering. I fudged some of the criteria, but I honored the spirit of all twenty requirements.
Here they are:
Begin the poem with a metaphor.
Say something specific but utterly preposterous.
Use at least one image for each of the five senses, either in succession or scattered randomly throughout the poem.
Use one example of synesthesia (mixing the senses).
Use the proper name of a person and the proper name of a place.
Contradict something you said earlier in the poem.
Change direction or digress from the last thing you said.
Use a word (slang?) you’ve never seen in a poem.
Use an example of false cause-effect logic.
Use a piece of talk you’ve actually heard (preferably in dialect and/or which you don’t understand).
Create a metaphor using the following construction: “The (adjective) (concrete noun) of (abstract noun) . . .”
Use an image in such a way as to reverse its usual associative qualities.
Make the persona or character in the poem do something he or she could not do in “real life.”
Refer to yourself by nickname and in the third person.
Write in the future tense, such that part of the poem seems to be a prediction.
Modify a noun with an unlikely adjective.
Make a declarative assertion that sounds convincing but that finally makes no sense.
Use a phrase from a language other than English.
Make a non-human object say or do something human (personification).
Close the poem with a vivid image that makes no statement, but that “echoes” an image from earlier in the poem.
I’m roused by a crimson red sun streaking across reddish-brown skin nude, save for pale thigh, tinted rose, draped midriff, ignited by dawn. What on earth was in that merlot? Cherry-red lips mark morning kiss; my red-eyed world turns to meet them. Disturbed, pale-pink thigh shrinks from blush. What on earth was in that merlot? Scarlet kiss, ruddy thigh, opposed? What on earth was in that merlot? And I, red sun, caught between worlds? Trapped between dawn-reddened kisses my neck and spine tattooed in wine bracketed by lavish pink pours confusion yields to crimson want the cock crows rise with day aflame; I drown in cups of red again. “You touch me nice,” said your pink grin. “Me too,” said your cherry-blushed friend. But was it really the merlot? ***
You are my favorite song
prolonged by our lifelong sing-along;
the seemingly ringing
random sequence of beaconing
notes bringing me in ungainly,
unacquainted, yet infectiously
groovy set melody
that soothes and threatens to
relentlessly bring me
you are this to me
as well as destiny
of warm contemplation;
the un-played keys
that say everything,
the indeterminate rests
among joyful-singing notes,
reaffirming its depths,
gasping for breath between
belly-laughs by the lungful;
your barely half-measured
fills impassioned sensations
with blasphemous pleasures;
ears favor your treble,
bones savor your bass,
and touch yearns for your encore.
“Come and see”
you sternly demand
in midnight silence
with icicle eyeliner
a cold glare that incinerates
inhibitions, leaving only
appetite and tongue wandering
to taste where boundaries blend
black and white into
I see your intent
just a beat;
“Come and see”,
I calmly answer
your unspoken demand
with an in-kind moon-soaked stillness,
and I wait, knowing
intuitively that the
crescent reflected in your scowl
won’t wait for my verbal consent
as my silence screams yes,
in fact, I am indeed
come and see
that this cold pale night
is nourished with the
she urgently craves;
come and see
if your prey bites back
with carnal-clawing contempt
as you hope he does;
come and see
where the pulse of my
power comes from
by gripping my flesh, my neck,
my third rail,
as my voltage and current
animates and courses through you
and you find yourself
lacking the energy
to release me,
come and see
the ice goddess convulsing,
coalescing upon our blending,
knowing herself sated
and overflowed upon a
whose goal was only to answer
her unspoken question coolly,
casually, completely and