The challenge this month was to write a poem in response to a quote. Initially, I thought we would be writing to the same quote, but several examples were shared, so I decided to use one that spoke to me. Over the last few weeks, the calendar was looming large for me as the month of June and the second anniversary of my mother's death approached. That anniversary is today. Knowing that we would be sharing our poems at this time, and because she's been much on my mind, I decided I wanted to write a poem for or about her.
The second challenge was to include the theme of transformation, which informs all of our writing this year. I couldn't figure out how to do that, though death is a form of transformation, and surely my life has been transformed by this loss.
I decided I wanted to write to a form and chose the villanelle. I like the repeating lines and the need for only two rhymes. I wrote with this photo of my mother beside me. It was taken in May of 2021 when I visited with her for the last time.
A few weeks ago, I read On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong. It's an amazing novel with beautiful prose. I copied several quotes from it into my commonplace journal. One stuck with me and ultimately became the inspiration for my poem. It rings true because I am both missing and remembering my mother, today and every day.
“In Vietnamese, the word for missing someone and remembering them is the same: nhớ.”
-Ocean Vuong in On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous
Would you like to try the next challenge? Next month we are writing in the form of monotetra. You can learn more about it at Writer's Digest. We hope you'll join us. Are you in? Good! You’ve got a month to craft your creation(s), then share your offering with the rest of us on July 28th in a post and/or on social media with the tag #PoetryPals. We look forward to reading your poems!
I hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by Irene Latham at Live Your Poem. Happy poetry Friday, friends!