NaPoWriMo 2018, Day 30: Final toast

Raisins bouncing in champagne

Bubbly and dried fruit
Pop goes the cork
Saber and savor
Effervesce of spirit spritz

Drop in raisins
to leap and dance in flute
music of bursting bubbles
top to bottom

Ever turning floating
down to bounce back up
and down to bubble up again
proving that the wrinkled

really do have fun.
Raisin toast

Prompt for the final day of the 2018 challenge:
Write a poem that engages with a strange and fascinating fact.



NaPoWriMo Day 29: Plath inspiration

Today, we’d like to challenge you to write a poem based on the Plath Poetry Project’s calendar. Simply pick a poem from the calendar, and then write a poem that responds or engages with your chosen Plath poem in some way.

White China, Black Gorse
after Plath’s “The Rabbit Catcher”

High over sea
out of wind
narrow path
into flowered shade
of waning life.

Birth and death.
white china, black gorse,
wall of light
erased as traps snap,
barren of prey.

of birth-death shrieks,
or shrieks=absence of silence?

Mind-wrought wires bind tight.


NaPoWriMo Day 28: post card prose poem

Je voudrais t’écrire si simplement, si simplement, si simplement. Sans que rien jamais n’arrête l’attention, sauf la tienne uniquement,…pour que la langue surtout reste secrète à révidence, comme si elle s’inventait à chaque pas, et comme si elle brûlait aussitôt…
–Jacques Derrida, La carte postale

Words cannot express how much I
miss you and your simplicity. Many
eyes besides yours will see the
message on this card, so the language
will be neither secret nor reinvented
at each step, although you may burn
it if you like, or just cross it out.
Wish you were here.


NaPoWriMo Day 27: Pick a card, any card

She was used to walking her dog, whose
formidable appearance and wild exuberance
made it a chore, extra strength leashes and
specialty halters aside, she persisted,
walking on, even when canine enthusiasm
passing all creatures with two or four legs
made adventure In patience and training.

One day he briefly looked up at her crown
of life showing all that is good for him and
she slipped a fine morsel between his bright teeth
and continued the walk as he trotted beside,
a tamed lion, adoring of gaze, no longer needing
resistant restraint, tethered only by petals
and leaves trusting only to love.



NaPoWriMo Day 26, the senses

Paris run
Just before sun
Over chilly Seine

Countless steps on quiet streets
Earbuds sound Léo Ferré
Saint Germain des Prés

Garçon de café
clanking down unbundled chairs
on hose washed terrasse

Chilly splashes pinprick
sweating calves from
cleaning trucks that flush

the streets of crottes de chien
Wait! Enveloping sniff from boulangerie
Bread is done.

And croissants, buttered flakes
delight the tongue,
strewing all with crumb

the day dawns.


NaPoWriMo Day 24: Elegy

Today’s challenge is to write an elegy. For some reason I felt the need to experiment with random operations, which I’ll explain after. Here’s the result:


Frigate, pogo, spiroid, you flee our black nimbi,
You come out of our ruckus to enter into glosseme;
And from this monarch your nape radiates to pure sumptuary.
I who knew you in the bedlam of yucca, who loved you,
I who, more than once, in the rarefied beauty of our winnings,
When lost, leaned on your faithful soundness,
I, whitened by deals snowing down on my heart,
I remember tinder gone by, and, dreaming
Of that young pastel that saw our two dazzlings,
Of moorland of stoving, of the resounding crucible,
Of the new article offered to the master shouting : yes,
I listen to this great sublime winking, now faded.

For my elegy, I first translated the one Victor Hugo wrote to his friend, poet Théophile Gautier. Then I replaced each noun with n+6, that is, with the sixth noun after that noun in my dictionary. The resulting poem has much silliness but a few images I like, like the bedlam of yucca and listening to the great sublime winking. And somehow it still captures the relationship between these two poets. Interesting how this elegy is much more about “I” than the addressee.

Here is Hugo’s poem:

A Théophile Gautier

Ami, poète, esprit, tu fuis notre nuit noire,
Tu sors de nos rumeurs pour entrer dans la gloire;
Et désormais ton nom rayonne aux purs sommets.
Moi qui t’ai connu jeune et beau, moi qui t’aimais,
Moi qui, plus d’une fois, dans nos altiers coups d’aile,
Eperdu, m’appuyais sur ton âme fidèle,
Moi, blanchi par les jours sur ma tète neigeant,
Je me souviens des temps écoulés, et, songeant
A ce jeune passé qui vit nos deux aurores,
A la lune, a l’orage, aux arènes sonores,
A l’art nouveau qui s’offre, au peuple criant: oui,
J’écoute ce grand vent sublime évanoui.


NaPoWriMo Day 23: Sound

I wanna be me

Darling I’m a nightmare
dressed like a daydream,
sang Taylor swiftly.
Swiftly, as if it were easy.

I’m a femme fatale
dressed like an angel.
I’m a supermodel
dressed like a grandma.

Aspiration? I’m a blackbelt
dressed like a Barbie.
Deception? I’m a Doberman
dressed like a dachshund.

I’m an orca dressed
like a dolphin
I’m a grizzly dressed
like a panda.

I’m a rattler dressed
like an earthworm.
I’m a yellowjacket
dressed like a honeybee

But you, you should believe
in appearances.


NaPoWriMo Day 22: the impossible happens

East is east and west is west
East is right and west is left
Sunrise east, sunset west
Sunrise east is right
Sunset west has left

But…if I face the rising sun, it isn’t on my right—
It’s straight ahead.
I quarter turn right shoulder toward dawn
To put it back in place.

All day I stand…and then

Quarter turn to admire the setting sun,
which should be on my left, but is
straight before me instead.
Another quarter turn
toward my left, thus I hope
to put things right.

In darktime stillness I await
the sunrise in the east, my right, which seems
unlikely for I saw it set there just before.
Sunrise in the east should be my right.
And yet it dazzles from my left, the west.


NaPoWriMo Day 21: Narcissus

Why I don’t take selfies

Photos, old photos show
godesss reality.

like the picture of Dorian Gray                                ,
show sunken cheeks,
sagging neck,
hooded eye,
blossom that wilts,
withers, resemblance untrue.

is captured in false outside image
not in the flower
I see
as me
from inside.