Friday, May 31, 2024

Poetry Sisters in Homage to Body Parts and Lucille Clifton

This month's challenge was to write in the style of Lucille Clifton while paying homage to a body part, as she does in the poem homage to my hips. Our Zoom call was a week early this month, allowing for time off for Memorial Day weekend. We all bumped up against body image and body weariness (a much better word than age) issues. Considering our bodies in this way was deeply humbling.

After many stops and starts on poems about various body parts (feet, calves, ears), I have two drafts to share. I haven't mastered Clifton's tone, but it was fun to try.

homage to my brain

this brain is a big brain
not genius big, but
packed with Jeopardy categories'
useless facts big.
this brain is a science brain
a nerdy brain
that muses on temperature and pressure
and the solubility of carbon dioxide in water
when soda goes flat.
this brain is a pessimistic brain
sometimes apocalyptic brain
filled with existential what-ifs
prompted by social media
and doom scrolling.
this brain is a noisy brain
a disobedient brain
refusing to quiet
standing in the way of
a good night’s sleep.

homage to my feet

these feet are powerful feet
they have marched
in formation and run
hilly miles. these feet
are expressive feet
oozing with joy in
going barefoot in the grass
dipping into tepid pools
soaking in a warm, salty tub.
these feet are pilgrim’s feet
climbing mountains in Tibet
or walking the serpentine
path of a labyrinth
every step a meditation
and prayer. these feet are
political feet, walking miles
in communion, standing
up for people and
the planet.

Poems ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2024. All rights reserved.

You can find the poems shared by my Poetry Sisters at the links below. 

    Would you like to try the next challenge? In June, we’re writing poems about wabi-sabi, with Wabi-sabi as the title. In Andrew Juniper's book Wabi Sabi: The Japanese Art of Impermanence, wabi sabi is defined this way. 

    Wabi-sabi is an aesthetic that finds beauty in things imperfect, impermanent and incomplete. Taken from the Japanese words wabi, which translates to less is more, and sabi, which means attentive melancholy, wabi-sabi refers to an awareness of the transient nature of earthly things and a corresponding pleasure in the things that bear the mark of this impermanence.

    In his book Wabi-Sabi Simple, Richard Powell described wabi-sabi as a philosophy that acknowledges a lifestyle that appreciates and accepts three simple truths: "Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect." Will you write with us? Good! You have a month to craft your creation and share it on May 31st in a post and/or on social media with the tag #PoetryPals. We look forward to reading your poems!  

    This week, Janice Scully at Salt City Verse is hosting Poetry Friday. I hope you'll take some time to check out all the poetic things being shared today. Happy Poetry Friday, friends!