Friday, June 12, 2009

Poetry Stretch Results - Spinning Tales

This week's challenge was to write a poem based on a folktale, fairy tale or legend. Here are the results. What fun we had!
Jane Yolen left this poem in the comments.

    Not for me the soft grey hood,
    flanneled, drawstringed,to perfection.
    Not for me the silken red hood
    Sewn with motherly perfection.
    a sop to wolves and woodcutters both;
    Not for me these old school tropes,
    I touch the now, the new, the never;
    I live on chocolate and on hopes.

    I go camouflaged into the forest,
    sit under a low-hanging live oak.
    Disguised by clothing and by silence
    I watch all the fairy tale folk
    walk, run, leap, fly by.
    I would rather read their expressions
    parse each fast-beating made-up heart.
    This has become my chief obsession:
    I do not want to be one of them,
    but watch in simple silent laughter;
    for none of them--not hero, not wolf
    gets to live happy ever after.

    @2009 Jane Yolen
Julie Larios from The Drift Record left this poem in the comments.
    Three gold coins.
    Three wishes wished.
    Three magic seeds
    and three magic fish.
    Three bad guesses.
    three real tears—
    now the sea is salty
    now the seeds are years,
    now the threes are doubles,
    now the doubles, one;
    now the world is spinning
    ‘til it comes undone.
    Now you are a changeling,
    now you are a haunt,
    now you're hardly here at all,
    and now you're not.
    Now you're just the wind
    as it moves through leaves,
    I can hear you whispering:
    one, two, three.
Harriet from spynotes shares a poem called The Day the Sky Fell.

Laura Salas shares a poem called Obsession by Prince Charming.

Elaine from Wild Rose Reader has a Q and A poem.

Sara Lewis Holmes from Read*Write*Believe shares a cento for the frog princes entitled and we leap up to become.

Beloved Haiku Dreams shares a poem entitled She Came . . . As Fore Told.
I wrote several poems this week. Here's one of them.
A Prince’s Lament

I hate these clothes
this collar
these britches

They’re binding
and itch
I cannot breathe
or stretch
or hop

Thrown against a wall
and transformed
living a life
I despise
Don’t get me started
on the wife

I cannot eat or sleep
when I want
nor DO
what I want

How I long for the cool
of the pool
the song of the pond
my friends in the water

Each day I leave the castle
in search of a witch
(a real one)
longing to be cursed
and set free
It's not too late if you still want to play. Leave me a note about your poem and I'll include it in the results.


  1. Some really beautiful poems this week. I love fairytales; they always really spur my imagination. I have a half-scrawled beginning for this stretch, but this was NOT the week for it -- book launch, two days of unexpected we-haven't-seen-you-in-six-years-and-you-just-happened-to-be-in-Scotland guests, and all the ensuing drama of getting back from vacation and trying to unpack and clean. Those are all excuses -- good reasons, maybe, but excuses. This summer, hopefully I'll get back into the swing of poetry!

  2. Amazing stuff! Thank you! Ironically enough, we're discussing poetry after doing folktales in my Children's Lit. Survey class right now.

  3. Tanita--I am on Scotland's other coast, with a house in St Andrews. I get a lot of those visitors, too.