NaPoWriMo, Day Nineteen

Had this notion on the way to work about the color of the world seeping up toward the sky in spring but on the way home I saw my first of the wonderful white flowering shrubs that to me really speak to Spring’s official arrival.

After four, maybe five months of the sky
throwing down sifts and squalls and bucket loads
of snow and more snow and piling it up
in the normal fashion of New England
And it seems to many deeper and more
snow than it has to be to make a point.
Miraculously it all vanishes
but the woods stand brown and empty awhile.
The earth at last yields color to the world –
the new grasses shining in golden light
treetops pink and impossibly yellow
waiting for leaves to burst summery.
Shrub rows of white petals wind-tossed laughing
spring flecks falling across the joyous sky.

NaPoWriMo, Day Eleven

Today’s prompt from NaPoWriMo was to write a Bop: “The invention of poet Afaa Michael Weaver, the Bop is a kind of combination sonnet + song. Like a Shakespearan sonnet, it introduces, discusses, and then solves (or fails to solve) a problem. Like a song, it relies on refrains and repetition. In the basic Bop poem, a six-line stanza introduces the problem, and is followed by a one-line refrain. The next, eight-line stanza discusses and develops the problem, and is again followed by the one-line refrain. Then, another six-line stanza resolves or concludes the problem, and is again followed by the refrain. Here’s an example of a Bop poem written by Weaver, and here’s another by the poet Ravi Shankar.”

I have to say that it was a beautiful day. I fixed two plumbing issues. I stripped the bed and did laundry. I finished a landscape which was sort of meh, and did a quick little still life of my favorite brushes. I looked at two watercolor-related books. I shook my head over the news. I watched the daffodils start to yellow up. I opened the bedroom window. But the words… been a hard few days.

A Reminder of Ideas, Just in Case

Before the month started I wrote down this:
A reminder of ideas, just in case –
For those days when words didn’t flow from me
When there’s fresh laundry that needs my folding
and everything looks better than the page.
the list of ideas that might be useful.

Oh spirit of writing, where have you gone?

Practice, perseverance, daily commute
The work of dailyness, the clouds and sky
sonnets and haiku and some limericks
Taking time to look, A box full of paint
No ideas but in things. Just do the work.
Beauty. Coming home. Walls full of paintings.
A wall full of my paintings. Hold to joy.
The color of a lake. The length of days.

Oh spirit of writing, where have you gone?

Tonight this list is a whole universe
tonight the words are somewhere in between
Today I painted, I’d say with success
a still life of my brushes. And I fixed
the washer so it works. I folded sheets.
I reviewed the reminder of ideas.

NaPoWriMo Day Seven

Because I think we’re all here.

And here’s what I did before work today:

Life in 2017

The constant, low-level adrenaline
pushed out all my thoughts
made your fingers twitch
interrupted any conversation
made your stomach hurt. made my temples throb.
How to soothe this inner shivering mess
in the words of the wise: make art, breathe deep,
string words together into poetry
write tales to bind up the ragged edges
while you’re making and thinking and writing
and looking around at the world at hand
the world as it really is, beautiful
and whole, filled with light and darkness and birds
all thoughts belong to me and you alone.

NaPoWriMo Day Five

This was a stretch and I know, before the editing is done, there will be even more alternate ending couplets than I have already….

Clean out the closet, the drawer-fuls of things
making room, space, to welcome in the new
Throw out the ratty, the tattered and worn
the last decade’s style, the no-longer-fits.
Perhaps these can be re-purposed, perhaps
they can be donated, gifted, elsewhere
but it’s as likely that they must go out,
out in big black bags, or some old boxes
to a donation bin, or a thrift shop
maybe to the annual rummage sale.
The same is true of words, writing poems,
words and fashions come and go, like seasons
I’ll put on my own clothes, comfortably
and use my own words to write a sonnet

NaPoWriMo Day 1

I wrote these last night onto my phone. Little did I know that the early bird prompt was of prose and haiku.

I fold the words, clouds
Sailing on seas blue, endless,
Purposeful, loving.

this telling of sky:
the love it holds out to clouds
protective of stars.

Scooping up the wind
Directing it now to hills,
Now to the river

So I’m off to a month of poems, today combining haiku and sonnet-form.

I fold the words, clouds creased on seas blue
endlessly sailing, purposeful of love
This telling of the sky, holding out stars
protective, small repeated gesturing
which sweeps the night, trees clattering with wind
in between, the stars refrain the chatter
popping with glint until clouds win again
and the night shivers with rain, falling cold.
Going out to see what is in the world
Stepping off the porch, rain or snow or clear
The world travels in its late night journey
Far off the train sings or an owl calling
Far off the house seems, a few steps further
past the tree to learn what of the night.

Cease to Be

When I have Fears That I May Cease to Be
By John Keats

When I have fears that I may cease to be
Before my pen has gleaned my teeming brain,
Before high-pilèd books, in charactery,
Hold like rich garners the full ripened grain;
When I behold, upon the night’s starred face,
Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
And think that I may never live to trace
Their shadows with the magic hand of chance;
And when I feel, fair creature of an hour,
That I shall never look upon thee more,
Never have relish in the faery power
Of unreflecting love—then on the shore
Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
Till love and fame to nothingness do sink.

Day 30, NaPoWriMo – Waiting for the May

The last of April, green thrown lightly to
the near hills, a scarf catching the last sun
and lit improbably, rims each bobble
and guides the weary homeward once again.
It settles under the long waiting world
which holds forth the early blossoms – to May!
tonight the world will turn to spring’s soft arms
in her sweetest embrace, remembering
what winter’s freeze and snow has pushed aside
Tomorrow in the dawn, the bells a-ring,
the feet shall leap and hearts rise up as well
in song they’ll call and answer with gladness.
Wait in the night, watchers of the springtide
wait and watch, with ready song and garland.