NaPoWriMo 2022 Day 28 My Trees

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Photo by veeterzy on Unsplash.

Hello again! I can’t believe that there are only two more days of this year’s NaPoWriMo. I’m sad to say the least. Today’s prompt was to write a concrete poem. Like acrostic poems, concrete poems are a favorite for grade-school writing assignments, so this may not be a first time at the concrete-poem rodeo.

In brief, a concrete poem is one in which the lines are shaped in a way that mimics the topic of the poem. For example, May Swenson’s poem “Women” mimics curves, reinforcing the poem’s references to motion, rocking horses, and even the shape of a woman’s body. George Starbuck’s “Sonnet in the Shape of a Potted Christmas Tree” is – you guessed it – a sonnet in the shape of a potted Christmas tree.

So, my concrete poem proved difficult to post without the shape shifting when previewed via mobile phone or desktop. What you will find is that I have posted an image of my poem for those reading from mobile apps and a regular copy for those reading from a laptop or desktop. Either way you are reading it, I hope you will be able to detect my “tree” form.

Happy reading!

                                                                     My Trees


                                                                   My                                                      childhood
                                                                                                                   memories
                                                         are                                               full     of 
                                                 trees                                         like the
                                          giant                                      willow
                                    who                                      grew 
                          in the                                      middle
                    of the                               little grove 
             of trees                          hidden 
         behind                      the new 
     condo            development
    It was            there that
I dreamed  of spending 
my adult life
chain-smoking 
cigarettes and 
clacking the keys of 
my old typewriter 
as I cranked out
my next best-selling
novel. Then there was 
the colossal oak on the 
playground--the one whose 
ground roots held me like a 
comforting mother as I watched 
the other children run and play 
together from a disassociated 
distance. The oak was my friend—
my best friend—and I loved her.   
In later years, there was the young
sapling who gave its life to save mine.
It happened when the canoe tipped over,
I slipped quietly into the swirling river, and 
I thought I was dead at sixteen--until I spotted 
my father uprooting a small sapling from the bank.
He held the tree across the river and told me to grab on;
It was then I knew I was safe in the strength of the tree and
my father.        Safe in my childhood memories         safe in the arms       of    trees.  

--cjpjordan

NaPoWriMo 2022 Day 12

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Photo Credit: https://abcbirds.org/blog21/amazing-facts-hummingbird-chicks/

Today’s prompt came as no surprise. Yesterday, the challenge was to write a poem about a very large thing. Today, I had to invert my inspiration and write a poem about a very small thing. 

Maybe you’d like to try your hand at poetry. I would love to hear what tiny thing you’d like to write about in your poem. I landed on hummingbird eggs and rather enjoyed the adventure.

 Faerie Eggs

How small they were—teeny tiny—
Like faerie eggs enclosed in spiny
forest foliage—safe and sound.

Mysterious and magical
Protected by the physical
Perhaps I was on Faerie Ground.

And then I saw them fluttering
up and down the trees scuttering
while I stood statue-like, spellbound.

Hummingbirds dipped and dashed; they flew
around my head with quite a crew
of wee guardians duty bound

to protect from the likes of me.
I stepped away so quietly—
slipped like a ghost to the background.

Tiny wings moved faster than light
soon disappearing from my sight;
gathering my wits I glanced around,

And I knew I was all alone
for the forest looked overgrown—
save the twinkling Dust on the ground.

—cjpjordan

Trust the Wait

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Today is surgery day. I am still in the surgery waiting room and she’s been in there for four hours already. To distract myself from the bile creeping up into my throat, I wrote.

It’s what writers do.

It’s what poets do.

It’s certainly what I do.

I will keep you all posted as soon as I know something.


Trust The Wait

There’s a breathless expectancy
in the hospital waiting room.
I feel it in the man in blue
speaking nervously on his phone;

I feel it in the woman dressed
in coral slacks and matching bag
as she rushes past with purpose—
a faint hint of lillies wafting.

Trust the wait; live in the question—
beauty is becoming in us.

Doctors and nurses bustle by
eyes cast downward even as I
earnestly hope one brings me news.
The darkness of waiting covers

me like a cocoon; I hate this.
I hate the persistent nagging
of worry, the lingering doubt—
the waiting and the not knowing.

Trust the wait; live in the question—
beauty is becoming in us.

I am longing for this darkness
to burst into glorious light;
I am waiting for certainty
in the middle of misgivings.

So I will close my eyes and long
for days when sunshine kissed the waves,
and I will set foreboding fears
aside to dream of unknown shores.

Trust the wait; live in the question—
beauty is becoming in us.

Denial? Perhaps there is some;
I prefer resigning to rest.
Not dispassionate, but rather
prepossessed to my pact with peace.

Trust the wait; live in the question—
beauty is becoming in us.

—a draft by Carla Jeanne Picklo Jordan

Day #11

National Poetry Month: Day #11

The prompt for today was to write a Anacreontic poem (basically, a seven syllabic line with rhyming couplets) about wine-and-love.

I accepted the challenge, as always, but with my own twist. This morning a friend of mine posted something on her Facebook that resonated deep within me. This friend has suffered through many struggles – her husband is fighting a painful cancer, she’s lost close family members to death, she herself has had multiple health problems, and the list goes on. Her post stated that two songs best describe what she’s been dealing with lately: “Worn” by Tenth Avenue North and “Held” by Natalie Grant.

Worn and held–these two words hummed in my mind and soul all day long. When it came to writing this poem, I decided to write about love – truelove – the kind that comes along once in a lifetime. The kind of love that loves and waits and worries through excruciating cancers and health problems exacerbated by stress. The kind of love that partners so deeply, death may separate the bodies, but never the souls.

I dedicate this poem to a true Warrior Woman: Christina Thomas-Reilly.

Worn and Held

A warrior woman stately,
she wears her duty greatly
like an elegant long gown
loosely draped and flowing down.

Sweet girl who lives worn and held:
Warrior Woman never quelled.

There’s a confidence and trust
even when life seems unjust
that speaks the power of grace,
that shines brightly on her face.

Sweet girl who lives worn and held:
Warrior Woman never quelled.

Though often simply worn out,
she stands steady and devout.
When asked how she manages,
she lists the advantages
of resting in her Savior
held safely through all failure.

Sweet girl who lives worn and held:
Warrior Woman never quelled.

In the midst of disaster,
she runs straight to the Master
who hears her heart while she weeps–
gently holds her while she sleeps.

Sweet girl who lives worn and held:
Warrior Woman never quelled.

The warrior weary and worn
lays down the burden she’s born.
She pours out her life like oil,
plants love in the fertile soil
deep within her lover’s soul.
So relinquish all control
sweet girl who lives worn and held:
Warrior Woman never quelled.

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