NaPoWriMo 2019, Day 7

7 Apr

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When I was born, I weighed one pound and nine ounces. My parents received me as a foster child when I was discharged from the hospital at five months, then weighing five pounds. They adopted me about half a year later. My dad (above in 1979) has never gotten over how small I was when my mother brought me home from the hospital. I’ve looked up photos of other babies who weighed approximately the same as I did, and it’s simply shocking. Note: I was only about a week early. My birthmother starved herself to conceal her pregnancy and only gained around ten pounds during the pregnancy.

Here is today’s poem:

 

My Father Explaining How Small I Was

for C.V.A.

Note: I will only leave poems up for a week or so before removing them, so I can edit and submit later.

NaPoWriMo 2019, Day 6

6 Apr

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I love swans, especially swan legends and mythology. This painting by Reinier van Persijn in 1655, is haunting and illustrates the idea of the swan song. Did you know that not only do swans mate for life, but in some instances, swans have been known to “divorce?” How crazy is that?

At any rate, here’s my poem for day 6 of NaPoWriMo (National Poetry Writing Month):

 

[Swan Confession]

 

Note: I’m only leaving poems up for about a week so I can edit and submit them later.

 

NaPoWriMo 2019, Day 5

5 Apr

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The above painting is The Cypress Tree by Vincent Van Gogh, but is not the actual inspiration for today’s poem. Today’s poem, “Cypress” is based on Greek and Roman mythology of Cyparissus and Aphrodite, both of whom had specific legends based on cypress trees. I love the Cypress—we have them here in Texas, often growing out of rivers. They’re so beautiful!

 

[Cypress]

 

Note: I only leave poems up for about a week before removing them, so I can edit and submit later.

NaPoWriMo, Day 4

4 Apr

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Today’s poem is based on the above painting, Le Lac de Cygnes by Dorothy Mullock. I found it incredibly haunting. As NaPoWriMo is all about drafts, I expect the form of this poem will change. I like playing with shapes of poems.

 

[Le Lac de Cygnes]

after the painting by Dorothy Mullock, 1913

 

Note: Poems from NaPoWriMo will only stay up one week before being removed or redacted, so I can edit and submit them.

NaPoWriMo 2019, Day 3

4 Apr

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Today’s poem for NaPoWriMo is a little more personal and not an ekphrastic. A lifetime ago I lived for a year in Denton, TX and attended University of North Texas. I was in a long term (nearly 5 year) relationship and was briefly engaged. I lived with my boyfriend in the above janky apartments. And then one day, I didn’t.

 

[The Apartment on Prairie Street]

for K.L.

Note: NaPoWriMo poems will only be left up on the blog for one week and then taken down so I can edit and submit.

NaPoWriMo 2019, Day 2

3 Apr

I love ekphrastic poetry and have written my fair share of poems inspired my various works of art. For National Poetry Month/NaPoWriMo, I’m focusing on the ekphrastic. I will also be writing about it for Superstition Review, which will be published on their website on April 11.

I highly recommend the book, Sunlight on the River: Poetry about Paintings and Paintings about Poetry, edited by Scott Gutterman, if you’re interested in the ekphrastic. It has such a wide variety of paintings and poems, from traditional to experimental, so there’s something for any taste!

For day two of NaPoWriMo (National Poetry Writing Month), I was inspired by the above photograph of Anna Pavlova from 1899. She was dressed for her role as Zulma in the ballet, Giselle. If you’re not familiar with the story of Giselle, Zulma is one of the ‘wilis’ women, who are spirits who in life died of broken hearts after being jilted by lovers, many of them before their weddings. These characters return to dance men to death in retribution to what happened to them while they were alive. The story is so haunting and I love it!

Here is my ekphrastic poem based on the photograph:

 

[Photograph of Anna Pavlova as Zulma in Giselle]

St Petersburg, 1899

Note: NaPoWriMo poems will only be left up on the blog for one week and then taken down so I can edit and submit.

 

National Poetry Month 2019

1 Apr

April is National Poetry Month and there’s no time like the present to update this blog!

I love National Poetry Month—it challenges me to read more poetry and to write more as well. I haven’t written anything but prose (like these Huffington Post pieces here and here) in a long while, and this month, I plan to attempt NaPoWriMo (where I’ll write one new poem/draft each day of the month). This is such a daunting task, but I’m up for it and I sincerely hope it will kickstart my poetry writing, again!

Of course, I always find inspiration in reading poetry. This month, I’m reading: Good Bones by Maggie Smith, American Primitive by Mary Oliver, If You Have to Go by Katie Ford, and a selection of poems by Percy Bysshe Shelley.

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My focus for this National Poetry Month will be ekphrastic poetry, which is an absolute love of mine. In fact, I’m working on an article about contemporary ekphrastic poetry for Superstition Review right now (due out on April 11). Expect quite a bit of ekphrastic poetry from my NaPoWriMo 2019 on this blog!

In fact, here’s one I just finished tinkering with to start off National Poetry Month based in this painting by Vasu Tolia:

 

[My Mother Packing Her Wedding Dress]

 

Note: I’m only leaving poems up for about a week, so I can edit and submit them later.

 

How are you celebrating the month? What will you be reading? Are you participating in NaPoWriPo? I’d love to know!

If you’re interested in adding my books to your National Poetry Month reading list, you can get them here and here!