Tuesday, March 25, 2014

another Oulipost warm up poem: The Chaos Julie Creates


The outlaw in question is the name of the person (or subject) to whom the poem is addressed. Each line of the poem includes all the letters of the alphabet except for the letter appearing in the dedicated name at the position corresponding to that of the line: when writing a poem to Eva, the first line will contain all letters except E, the second all letters except V, and the third all letters except A.

Choose someone mentioned in your newspaper to whom to address your poem. Compose a beautiful outlaw poem following the procedure outlined above and using words sourced from your newspaper text."

the source(s): http://www.capecodtoday.com/event/23738-talking-parenting

 the poem:
The Chaos Julie Creates
(J) Mrs Sacchetti,
the Queen Bee from childhood,
parenting with freckled siblings
and the heavy blizzard
talking about
heavy exercises of love.
(U) The department meets in New Jersey
 by registration rivalry where no topics with heavy settings
are eligible
or information recognized.
(L) A grant in care--
and funded in tax--
windswept New Jersey with no out
in Queen Bee poems he remains heavy
things zoom out,
but the shih
(I) tzu negated sun
next to the heavy household—(
jobs that know lots of love
seem key in excellent care
and department funded health seems)--
but the owner enjoys snowfall and poems
(E) Cod by grant unfold
official jurisdiction known
playing rivalry qualify topics
with six siblings
… law may blizzard.
the note: i wrote a stanza for each letter instead of just one line.  i felt it fit better, and allowed me to do more with the words by giving them line breaks and more diversifying, defining punctuation.  so there.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

an oulipost practice poem

the conductor of this great ambition I have taken on, to write a found poem every day in april, is equipping us all (78 poets) with some practice prompts.  I wanted to post this one because I kinda sorta like the resulting poem...

the prompt:
And now for something slightly more difficult...compose a poem using unintentional lines of iambic pentameter found in your newspaper (or practice source). Blank verse is poetry written in regular metrical but unrhymed lines, almost always iambic pentameters. More background: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blank_verse

the poem:
a drum line competition in Calgary
bring melons, cantaloupes and such
the two drummers have a long history

he got his first drum kit and began
a drum line competition in Calgary
beat boxing to his sister's hip-hop

we are sharing the seeds of music
a fun environment in which to write
a drum line competition in Calgary

SOURCE: 3/14/14 Mashpee Enterprise "Community Classes" and "Captivating Rhythms" by Luke Vose

Monday, March 10, 2014

Oulipost Warmup

As part of national poetry month, I have been gently coerced into a 30-day writing challenge wherein I'll be provided daily poetry prompts via The Found Poetry Review's Oulipost Project. 

To start the project, I've been asked to answer five questions...

1. What Excites You About Oulipost?
I have not written from prompts for a while and I look forward to the potential these prompts will unlock for me.  I am always looking for inspiration and new ideas to help stretch my poetry muscles.

2. What, If Anything, About Oulipost Scares You?
At first I was nervous about selecting a newspaper source because I do not usually read a daily paper.  Having done a little looking around, I have found a locally sourced news website that I like well enough.
Now I am only nervous about keeping up with the routine of writing a daily poem.  I hope to keep up with everyone else's work too if at all possible.

3. Have You Written Experimental or Found Poetry Before? If So, Tell Us About It.
Yes.  I can think of a few examples where I dabbled in experimental/found poetry, let me show you some...
Apples-to-Apples Poems - I had a few lovely friends over for tea and a game of Apples-to-Apples.  Once the game was over, I used the words each player had acquired to compose a series of couplets.  The bold words are the words that appeared on the cards.
Poems Inspired by Pictures or the The Ekphrasis Project - simply writing a poem inspired by an image.  I am not sure if this counts as experimental or found.
Give a Title, Get a Poem - I do this quite regularly where I ask friends on facebook to suggest a title for a poem, then I write a poem with that title for that person.  It's a fun way to engage others in my writing.
Facebook Status Stolen Poem - This was particularly fun.  For a few days, I went on facebook and stole status updates from friends and turned them into poems without them knowing.  This project got a lot of cool feedback.
the Love Poem Project - I haven't finished this particular project yet (and I started it over two years ago), but I have been "translating" English language poems into English for a while now.  It is my favorite method of transforming poetry into something new.  In fact, a poetry friend and I translated a George Oppen poem over and over again to create a chap book called Origami Shipwreck.

4.  What Newspaper Will Serve As Your Source Text?
CapeCodToday.com and New Scientist when appropriate.

5. Who Is Your Spirit Oulipian?
Raymond Queneau, if only because he is the one I know.  I am beginning to read more about him (and by him).  I look forward to introducing him into my work both as a role model and as a character.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

abysmal river

courage to run
as deep

as the abysmal
river of fear

that floods his system
at every turn

Wednesday, March 05, 2014


my poetry of 10 years ago had characters, and specific elements that worked for and against each other to create a theme, like the green river, that ran through my work.  I feel like I am missing that now.  I need a character or a landscape.  I need someone or something that would allow me to dig deeper and find more gravity, and to motivate my work.
I need something other than he, she, and the cat.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

popular picture


i don't take popular pictures.

in my heart - in my eyes -
they are the most honest pictures

but it is not what other people want
not what they want to look at

not for a very long time at least
and never a second time

though i could stare
- and i might some times -
at a picture for a very long while

and look at it again
over and over and over

a picture of a picture forms
over and over in my heart
and in my eyes

a tangle

mind you, she only cut her hair
to keep it from getting too messy
on long train rides up and down the country

it had little do with the fashion of the time
or the place, for that matter