Friday, June 07, 2019

Poetry Sisters Write Skinny Poems

Andi set this month's challenge to write a skinny poem. A skinny poem consists of eleven lines. Lines 1 and 11 can be any length and line 11 must use the same words from line 1, thought they can be rearranged.  Lines 2, 6, and 10 must be identical. And finally, what makes this poem skinny, is that fact that all lines except for 1 and 1 (the first and last) my be only ONE WORD LONG. You can learn more about the form at The Skinny Poetry Journal.

This form scared me. Couple that fear with a hellacious work schedule as of late, and that meant I had no poems the afternoon before posting. So, I was poem-less, but promised I'd try my hand at this form. Here are several first drafts of poems I whipped up just in the nick of time.

Skinny 1
A poem is a prayer
prayer is a poem

Skinny 2
My numbers don't lie
the audit
don't number my lies

Skinny 3
Carefully chosen words
words carefully chosen

Skinny 4
Traveling through time:
traveling through time.

Poems ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2019. All rights reserved.

You can read the pieces written by my Poetry Sisters at the links below. Liz and Sara hope to have poems in the next week or so. 
I do hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by Michelle Kogan. Happy poetry Friday friends!

Friday, May 03, 2019

Poetry Sisters Write Dizain

Sara set this month's challenge to write a French Dizain, with bonus points awarded for using the word “square” in the poem. This form consists of one 10-line stanza with 10 syllables per line. The rhyme scheme is a/b/a/b/b/c/c/d/c/d. You can read more about the form at Robert Lee Brewer's site at the Writer's Digest.

I played around with a several topics and wrote three poems, all of which are fair attempts at the form. However, I couldn't get past the calendar and the date, so I decided to write one more poem. You see, my father would have been 93 on Sunday. The tenth anniversary of his death is May 7th, and on the 10th, he and my mother would have celebrated 67 years of marriage. I hate that the beginning of May makes me so maudlin, especially because I thought it would be easier by now. It's not. Here's the poem I was inspired to write about my dad. I struggle with titles, so this one is untitled at the moment.

In early May my heart’s a hollow square
a box that holds my memories of you
Time heals all wounds but this cannot repair
Ten years without a father, I’ve made do
despite the dark and sad days I pushed through
I long to call you up, seek your advice
This time I’d listen well, would not think twice
Despite the gruff exterior you cared
I knew your heart, your work, your sacrifice
I’m pained by all you’ve missed and should have shared

Here are two additional poems I wrote while experimenting with this form.

How to Write a Poem
A poem doesn’t need to rhyme they said
it’s all about the heart and words you choose
select the ones that mend a broken thread
or square with all you know or just amuse
then tell the story of your faithful muse
take form and substance over what is new
eschew the window dressing, find a view
translate the human drama into art
dig deep into your soul and tell it true
love letter to the world a splendid start

Welcome to Boot Camp
A military life? They were surprised
It didn’t seem the hill I’d want to climb
The day we all arrived we exercised
our independence for one final time
then changed our clothes and scrubbed the floor of grime
We marched from place to place our corners squared
No matter what we thought we weren’t prepared
They broke us down and built us up again
as iron bonds were formed by hardships shared
they gave us swords but I preferred the pen

Poems ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2019. All rights reserved.

I also gave Laura's photo poem format a try and posted another dizain to Twitter. Head on over to check out  my math-themed poem.

You can read the pieces written by my Poetry Sisters at the links below. Kelly, Laura, and Andi  are all grappling with life this month, but they'll be back with us soon.
I do hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by Jama Rattigan at Jama's Alphabet Soup. Happy poetry Friday friends!

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

NPM 2019 Day 30: Personal Ad for a Frog

It's hard to believe that April is coming to a close. The last poem I'm sharing is part of series of poems I am working on that resemble classified or personal ads.

Personal Ad for a Frog
Winter sleeper, spring peeper
Champion hopper, eyes copper
Log squatter, loves water
Bug catcher, heart snatcher
Eats flies, great thighs
Winner of the swimming prize
Better than those other guys
Pick me!

Poem ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2019. All rights reserved.

You can see all the poems I shared this month at NPM 2019 Original Poems.
Happy Tuesday all. I'm so glad you spent this month with me celebrating poetry. Since Friday is the first of a new month, I'll see you back here for another Poetry Sisters challenge.

Monday, April 29, 2019

NPM 2019 Day 29: Scenes From a Train

Today I'm sharing a poem I wrote for a 2008 challenge that required using the five words sky, knot, fork, wall, and rose, as well as either trumpet or bullet as the sixth word. I recently dusted this one off and revised it. 

Scenes From a Train
She imagined riding on a bullet train
not in this creeping coach filled with
the sounds of screaming kids,
strains of muffled music, and
buzz of constant chatter.

She stared out the window,
eyes locked on the swirl and
knot of a flock ascending--
an immense black wall of
feet and feathers, wings and wind.

When the sky grayed and opened,
she traced the heavy drops,
rolling in forked rivers and streams
down the glass.

Hours later, lulled by the hum of
steel wheels and whispered voices,
she nodded off and missed
the rose and orange sunset
that quietly followed the summer rain.

Unfazed by all these events,
large and small,
within and without,
the train traveled on.

Poem ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2008-2019. All rights reserved.

Happy Monday all. See you tomorrow for the wrap-up of National Poetry Month and one more original poem.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

NPM 2019 Day 28: Acrostic Riddle

For more than 10 years I've been working on a series of riddle poems on animal collectives. I'm not sure why I've been stuck on this topic, but perhaps it's because I love words and collective nouns are a fascinating bunch of words. Here's one of the riddle poems, written as an acrostic.

Sticklike legs step and strut
Through tidal flats, mangrove swamps
Awash in pink and vermilion
Noisy honking keeps us together as we
Dig and forage for meals in the mud

Who are we?

Poem ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2017. All rights reserved.

My thought in writing these poems is that the collective noun would appear somewhere in the poem, along with clues to the animal. Once the reader turns the page, the animal would be revealed, along with some factual information.

For the above animal, you may be more familiar with the term flamboyance, but a group of these birds is also called a stand.
Image from article Beauty From the Bottom Up

Happy Sunday all. See you tomorrow for another original poem.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

NPM 2019 Day 27: Spread the Love

Back in 2017 I was an authlete in the Madness! Poetry competition. My first round word was propagate and I wrote several poems before selecting one to submit. This is one of the poems I did not share.

Spread the Love

Like plants we snip and grow,
we should cultivate kindness,
redouble compassion and caring,
give smiles
in return for nothing.

Like seismic waves that ripple outwards
from the epicenter,
goodwill, charity, and mercy
should be granted
to everyone.

Why do we allow hate to spread?
Let’s choose to propagate love instead.

Poem ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2017-2019. All rights reserved.

Happy Saturday all. See you tomorrow for another original poem.

Friday, April 26, 2019

NPM 2019 Day 26: Prince's Lament

As I mentioned earlier in the month, I love to write poems based on fairy tales. Today I'm sharing one inspired by the story of the frog prince.

Prince’s Lament
    Be careful what you wish for. 
       You just might get it …

Curse broken
I was transformed
but I despise this life
(don’t get me started
on my wife)

Restricted in every way
I cannot breathe
or stretch
or hop
cannot eat or sleep
whenever I want

I long to be
refreshed in the pool
to cool in the shade
of the trees
to join the chorus of
song at dawn

Each day I leave the castle
in search of a witch
(a real one)
hungry for a new curse
to set me free

Poem ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2019. All rights reserved.

I do hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by Carol Varsalona at Beyond LiteracyLink. Happy poetry Friday friends! See you tomorrow for another original poem.