Image found at: http://t-s-k-b.tumblr.com/post/2348399032
You can learn more about I Drivhuset (In the Greenhouse) at Collosal.
I try to take a very “in the moment” approach to writing ekphrastic poems. I don’t study the images for too long. I look closely for a minute or two and then write a list of the thoughts that come to mind upon first glance. Usually what emerges is a very odd collection of ideas. Here’s the list that came from first glance at what my sisters called the goddess.
- the glass ceiling
- caged women
- a bird in a gilded cage (cue Tweety bird swinging and singing “I’m a tweet little bird in a gilded cage. Tweety’s my name but I don’t know my age. …)
- crouching tiger, hidden dragon
- woman warrior
- The New Colossus by Emma Lazarus (Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,/With conquering limbs astride from land to land;/Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand/A mighty woman)
- the trappings of womanhood
- paper doll
Sonnet of a Kept Woman
You cannot hold my soul it won’t be bound
Inside a cage I heed sweet freedom’s call
Throw back my head and cry a mournful sound
Though trapped by ceiling, floor, unyielding walls
How to break free when others box me in
Is what I ask myself each day anew
I fight the battles, though I rarely win
But onward push to change your point of view
The corset of the past constricts me still
In places where I dare not dream to go
And yet I breathe and move against its will
Refuse to be sucked in its undertow
Someday the chains you’ve put me in will break
And standing tall I’ll leave you in my wake
Poem ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2015. All rights reserved.
Today is a particularly fortuitous day to be sharing poems with these ladies, as today The Miss Rumphius Effect celebrates its 9th anniversary. Without this blog I never would have waded boldly into the writing pool with these amazing women. I'm so grateful to have found them through this medium. You can read the poems written by my Poetry Seven compatriots at the links below.
I do hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by Katya at Write.Sketch.Repeat. Thanks to all of you who stop by to read, write poetry, and share in the love of children's literature. Happy poetry Friday friends!
Congratulations on your blogiversary, Tricia! That's quite an achievement. And I am also impressed that you chose to write a sonnet for your ekphrastic poem. Nicely done. I particularly like "the corset of the past."ReplyDelete
Happy Blog Birthday, Trisha!!! I am so glad to have found you through blogging. You are such an inspiration and mentor for the rest of us. I love how you've laid out your writing process for us here. So many thoughts coming from that image! My favorite line from your poem: "And yet I breathe and move against its will". A word of hope!ReplyDelete
A SONNET. "How to break free as others box me in" is the question of the ages, is it not? I still have to laugh that you chose a really rule-bound form after all of the random associations you did to begin - and frankly *I* should have tried the free association stuff. ANYWAY, this rocks, Tricia.ReplyDelete
And happy Blogversary.
This is how I did it too, Tricia---I made a long list of unrelated thoughts about the image, sat on the list for a day, then put my scribblings away and wrote a draft without looking at them again. I did not even think of using a form, though, haha! I wonder: is a sonnet a corset from the past? In a good way, I mean? It gives shape to our thoughts.... Anyway, happy, happy anniversary, and I'm privileged to know you and write poetry with you, my friend.ReplyDelete
Happy Blogiversary!! Fine poem, Tricia. Interesting to see your brainstorming notes, too :)!ReplyDelete
Oh, my, that corset of the past is awesome! Beautiful, strong sonnet. And I love that you shared your brainstorming list. This is often how I start an ekphrastic poem, too (like in my 15 Words or Less Poems), but for once I didn't do it here. Happy that you did and shared:>)ReplyDelete
You made yours into a sonnet???? Over achiever!!! Happy anniversary, my friend. And much love. This is LOVELY!!!!ReplyDelete
Happy blogiversary, Tricia! The Miss Rumphius Effect will always "stand tall" in my mind.ReplyDelete
So here's my attempt. Perhaps more elegaic than ekphrastic, though.ReplyDelete
Here in the greenhouse of my life,
tender shoots warming my feet,
tendrils curling up my legs
like memories of summer,
I consider autumn.
Here in the hothouse of my life,
flashes of yester beaming
through the clear windows,
hints of rain on the glass,
I consider autumn,
Here in the conservatory of my life,
where summer wants to reign
and nothing is reined in but the liiving,
held in stasis, in every poem,
I consider the autumn of my life.
©2015 Jane Yolen all rights reserved
First of all, happy blogiversary! I count myself lucky that I've gotten to know you on the blogs and have gotten to meet you in the flesh!ReplyDelete
I love your poem, and as a "text to text" connection, would recommend that you read THE HIRED GIRL by Laura Amy Schlitz. They pair perfectly.