Friday, April 24, 2009

Poetry: Sweating Loss

Here is poem # 24 for the poetry pledge drive. It's the last week of the pledge drive and I'm grasping at straws for ideas for new poems every day at this point. As if the haiku weren't bad enough, I now give you . . . a mad lib. That's right. I've stooped that low.

I randomly started a poem leaving blanks that needed to be filled in and then asked my husband for a person, noun, color, etc. to fill in those blanks. If you remember these things from your childhood, you'll remember that they often turn out funny, surreal, or at least a little bit interesting because the unexpected words create unconventional visual images. Unfortunately, this didn't turn out to be satisfying in any of those ways. But what it did do was make me realize I kind of knew what I wanted in those blanks in the first place, so it ended up working as an exercise to counter writer's block.

I've included both the version with which my husband 'helped' (the fill-in-the-blank words are bolded) and my rewrite for your amusement. (I'm still not sure which one's worse!)

The Farmer's Chili
Over and over
Again I asked the farmer
To open the chili before

The shoes suffocate,
Gasping for ecru air,
Sweating confusion,

Sweating Loss
Over and over
Again I asked the nurse
To open the window before

The visitors suffocate,
Gasping for grey air,
Sweating sympathy,

To read other poems or poetry-related posts on this blog, click here.

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