The prompt for Day 20 is “take the phrase “Let’s (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then write your poem. Example titles might include: “Let’s Fly a Kite,” “Let’s Party,” “Let’s Forget About That Last Poem I Wrote That Was a Little Too Personal,” etc.”
I hope you’ve enjoyed the poems I’ve posted so far for the April PAD Challenge. I’m still a couple days behind unfortunately. I’ve enjoyed the experience and feel like the challenge is benefiting my writing by helping me develop better time management habits (obviously still a work in progress) and streeeeeeeetching my mind.
The prompt for Thursday the 19th is “write a life event poem. By life event poem, I mean a poem that takes place at or describes a life event, such as a wedding, birth, death, graduation, etc. There are so many possibilities.”
How ’bout we go back 14 years to an event that seemed so much larger then than it does now?
She offered herself to me, but
I felt like a thief that night. Not quite
a professional heist, fumbling key
and setting off the alarm.
She left before my parents were due home,
leaving her bra as a memento. Evidence.
We didn’t speak at school the next day.
Happy Saturday, my dear readers. I’m continuing my push to catch up on the April PAD Challenge. So here is Wednesday’s prompt: “think of a favorite regional cuisine, make that the title of your poem, and then, write the poem. For instance, you may title your poem something like “Brunswick Stew,” “Deep Dish Pizza,” or “Jambalaya,” though the poem doesn’t exactly have to be about food.”
This one is short and sweet. Pardon the pun.
We drove down to Rush Springs,
sun already intense on Saturday
morning, for the Watermelon Festival.
So on to Day 16, Monday’s poem. I’m determined to catch up. The prompt is “write a mixed up poem. I guess there are a few ways to come at this poem. Your narrator could have mixed feelings about something. Or a character could get “mixed up” in something. Or the poem could be about mixing up a drink. Or a mixtape. Or however you wish to mix this prompt/poem up.”
“There’s Been a Mistake”
I thought I’d be taller than this. A couple more
inches would do wonders for my serve. But tennis
abandoned me when she shredded my knees.
At least I have the backhand–cross court, down the
I’ve gone from one day behind to two days behind. Muse, help me catch up.
The Day 15 prompt is ” use the following five words in your poem: slash, button, mask, strap, and balloon. Use them in any order.” It took a while to get started on this prompt, but here is what I came up with.
Each button secured and
both bootstraps fastened.
More important: the mask
I show the world applied.
Where is childhood? Innocence?
Gone. Floated away like
my birthday balloon. A slash
dividing me from myself.
It’s Sunday evening, and here I sit (on my front porch, accompanied by Scotch and cigarettes), preparing Saturday’s poem. I do hate falling behind like this. I intended to follow Friday’s poem, which I posted late last night, with Saturday’s poem, but ideas were lacking at 2am. Often I think better late at night. Yesterday, that wasn’t the case. Perhaps anxiety, multiplied by my wife’s even greater anxiety, about the severe storms in the area coupled with exhaustion from a day filled with family activities limited my cognitive function. The family activities were fun, even more so than usual, and included opening day at Cherry Street Farmers’ Market, hanging out at Shades of Brown, and an afternoon poetry walk. Here are my girls taking a break during the walk to “write” their own poems.
Pardon the long intro. Let us get to work. The prompt for Saturday, 14 April is “write a doomsday poem. Some of you may remember the world was supposed to end last year (actually twice last year), but that’s nothing new. Every few years there seems to be a new “end of world” prediction (anyone remember Y2K?). In fact, this year had a movie made after it in relation to the Mayan calendar (btw, my dad is one of those who actually believes in the 2012 doomsday prediction), and there’s a whole industry built around end times preparations. So why not write a poem about it?” I find this an interesting choice after the “unlucky poem” prescribed for Friday the 13th. My “unlucky poem” was quite dark, so a humorous interpretation for Doomsday may be in order.
“Sundays in Oklahoma”
I had a sip of wine at church, but
the Rector wouldn’t tilt the chalice enough.
I fired up the grill in the afternoon, immediately
craving an ice cold brew. Then I recalled
the date–Sunday. Only 3-point on the shelves
at the corner store. Package stores shut
for the holy day. Whole in my day.
As I start this post, it’s 11:55 on Saturday night. This is the post for Friday’s poem, which will be followed shortly by Saturday’s poem. Thus I will be caught up. I may stay up exceptionally late tonight, even into the morning hours, depending on the weather. More than 100 tornados touched down on Saturday, and some of the storms that produced them are heading toward Tulsa. Hopefully they will weaken during the next few hours, but the air here is still quite warm, so there is a chance they’ll continue to refuel. The most recent predictions I’ve read put the storms into Tulsa between 3 and 7 am.
The prompt for Friday the 13th is “write an unlucky poem. Today is Friday the 13th, and I think it’s the perfect opportunity to wax poetic about anything and everything unlucky.” As someone whose job it is to help other people find work, I think a lot about labor market trends. Though GDP is increasing, and the American economy is no longer hemorrhaging jobs, the labor market is still tight. We’ve added 200,000+ jobs each of the last few months, but that pace isn’t enough. Many are left jobless. Others are still losing jobs.
Each lost job is more than a statistic. It is an individual or family forced to go without in the richest nation in the world. It’s someone else in line at the food bank, someone else sleeping beneath a bridge. It’s another foreclosure or eviction. It’s broken families and broken hearts. It’s unrealized potential, individually and collectively. You’ve heard the stories or have been the story. But what I think is even sadder than these bad situations is how uncaring many among the luckily employed are. If you are gainfully employed, be thankful. Don’t assume that the unlucky “deserve” their joblessness. Don’t assume that everyone on unemployment benefits is a lazy drug addict.
Asked to clear his desk by 5:00.
Lied to his wife. Told her Everything will be okay.
Packed a copier paper box
with family pictures and that
worthless 15 Years Service plaque.
Typed a Fuck You email
to the CEO. Deleted it unsent.
I have some ideas on where to take this poem, but I’m going to just post the Friday section for now and think about whether to give it more time and effort. I feel it’s on the cheesy side of my bleeding heart in its current incarnation.
I goofed. My wife can tell you this isn’t the first time. Unfortunately for her, it won’t be the last. Yesterday, Robert Lee Brewer posted a challenge within a challenge on his Poetic Asides blog, and I failed to notice the daily prompt., which is “take the phrase “Something (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write the poem. Example titles might include: “Something New,” “Something Strange,” “Something at the End of This Book,” or “Something Something.”
So, here is yesterday’s poem. Today’s will come along…eventually, probably tomorrow.
There must be something wrong
in a land that values material
over what matters. But love,
infinite in wisdom and faculty, is
the fulfillment of man’s purpose.
Today’s poetry prompt is “pick a season (any season) and make it the title of your poem; then, write your poem. For instance, your poem might be titled “Winter” or “Spring” or “Rabbit Season” (if you have a sense of humor and like Looney Tunes cartoons).”
We have a certain spring ritual here in tornado alley.
When the tornado sirens
every Wednesday noon