Monday, July 01, 2013

Monday Poetry Stretch - List Poem

I could list all the reasons why I've been absent, but thought a poem would be better.

Why Poems (and Blog Posts) Aren't Written

The end of school
beginning of summer
laundry needs folding
house needs cleaning
mind and body never in the same place at the same time
sleepless nights
pens out of ink
pencil points broken
computers crashed
inspiration flown the coop

In all honesty, my mom was in the hospital for three months and the travel and worry made it really hard to be present anywhere. She's home now with 24-hour nursing care and a plan in place that says there will be no more hospital visits. I'm having a bit of trouble wrapping my heart and mind around what that means.

In the meantime, I'm teaching summer school and getting on with the business of life. I'm sorry I haven't been here. I have missed you and missed blogging. I hope you'll join me this week and write a list poem. I'm going to keep going and see if I can't write something a bit more inspirational.


  1. Trisha I am so sorry to hear of the progression for your mom. Keeping you in my heart and prayers, and holding you in the light. I haven't written much in a while ( your reasons and others) but maybe I can pull out a list poem...

    P.S. yours is the first blog I am reading from feedly. RIP Google Reader (sob).

  2. Hi Andi,
    Thanks for the prayers. I'm grateful for every one.

  3. Sorry to hear all that, Tricia. It is hard to find the "space" for things like this kind of blogging when there are emotionally challenging weights hanging around.

    I figured I'd share with you my answer list poem...

    Why Poems (and blog posts) Are Written

    The end of school
    beginning of summer
    laundry needs folding
    house needs cleaning
    mind and body never in the same place at the same time
    sleepless nights
    pens full of ink
    pencil points sharpened
    computers crashed
    inspiration in the coop

    Greg, the lazy poet :-)

  4. Introductory list: (a) Sorry to hear about your tough times, Tricia; (b) I’m really not trying to be facetious with the following; and (c) I’ve been told my poems tend to turn into stories.

    Why Poems Aren’t Written Anymore

    The dog ate my poetry homework
    after he was abducted by aliens.

    The printer wouldn’t print it because
    the aliens made it print interstellar propaganda.

    I lost it on the bus because the aliens
    took it when they took everybody.

    I couldn’t find my poem in the mines
    where the aliens forced us to work.

    My teacher’s gone, all the teachers are,
    so there’s no one to give it to anyway.

    I wish I had more homework.

    —Kate Coombs, 2013
    all rights reserved

  5. Wishing you all best wishes, Tricia. Here's a quick sketch:

    Bucket List for a Rain Barrel

    that wrens will visit me again
    that meadow fawns will come to drink
    that glaciating winter rime
    will make of me a skating rink

    that cool monsoons will loose a spring
    and crackle me with gemmy glaze
    that downpours delicate will fill
    the round container of my days

    ©2013 Steven Withrow, all rights reserved

  6. Other People, not Frederick

    It’s high time you got out
    from under that mulberry bush,
    Got past that bend in the road,
    onto the coastline before Edward’s
    beer-basted everything. Low tide
    and the muscles are easy for picking.
    I like how you talk about X.
    The thoughts you have that
    don’t even get a sentence.
    I like how your one good idea
    drifts like a goat’s eye
    in its little blue ceiling.
    I like how half of them
    don’t make the finish line.
    Just let it be, like sometimes we sip
    lime drink with Lizzie Ann.
    I like how she wore a bumblebee
    in her lip and how you have strange
    relations, whoever they be, no
    forwarding address, no snapshot.
    That cloud there is a cloud
    like a long armadillo.
    I can see what you mean. I get you.
    We have our little chuckles.
    Not like that Eleanor
    before she was Roosevelt
    Standing in front of that Oak Terrace
    With her flappers high in the snow.
    That’s other people. Not us.

  7. Sorry to hear about your mom. I've been thrown off by far less. Thank you for inspiring an hour's work and a return to writing.

    Things to do with Poems

    Read them
    Read them out loud
    Read them when you should be reading something else
    Read them to remind yourself you’re not alone
    Copy them out, in your own hand, fold them into little squares, and stuff them
    in your shoe
    Tape them to the mirror, the wall, the dashboard, your forehead
    Write them when the spring breaks ground
    Write them when you fear your chest will burst with all you stuff in there
    Etch them on your brain
    Ink them on your arm following your veins
    Write them on the sidewalk in thick pink chalk
    Watch them dissolve and run off in the rain
    Pick their cotton shreds from your lint screen
    Recite them so the clock on the back wall can hear you
    Hide them in books and backpacks and pillowcases so someone else can find them
    Whisper them in the dark

    Elizabeth Steinglass, 2013, all rights reserved

  8. Tricia,

    I'm so sorry to read about what's going on with your Mom. I'll be thinking positive thoughts for you and your family. Thanks for coming back to the blog, we missed you.



    Scuffed up "lucky penny" that Grandpa's Grandpa gave him.
    Faded daffodil handkerchief that Grandma's Grandma gave her.
    Crinkled funeral program I typed up when my cat Moe passed away.
    Semi-torn hospital I.D. Mom wore when I was brought into this world.
    Dirt-tinged baseball gloves Dad used when he was in high school.
    Cake stained 1st grade report card when I received straight A's.
    Pristine family photo of all of us making goofy faces to each other.

    (C) Charles Waters 2013 all rights reserved.

  9. Thinking of you, Tricia, and hoping thngs have settled into a gentler rhythm for you. Welcome back.

  10. Sending positive thoughts and healing energy to you and yours, Tricia. I hope that things turn around soon. xo,a.

  11. I’m intrigued with your blog. Have you considered writing a book about Poetry? We are always looking for new and fresh ideas for our free family literacy program. Read Conmigo is a literacy program that promotes English/Spanish bilingualism. We provide parents and teachers with unique learning tools including bilingual children's books and FREE activities, to help improve the learning environment in their home. In the last two years, we have provided over 620,000 free books. However, we have yet to book focused on poetry. Check out our website