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Pendragon
09-13-2008, 06:19 AM
I wish to propose a "Subject" poetry contest. Basically, one choses a mental image and asks the others to respond. The winner will chose the next subject? Any takers? The first subject will be:

"a rose petal falls to the floor"

I will set a date when I get response.

As ever loving as ever,

Pen

TheFifthElement
09-13-2008, 07:59 AM
Neat idea Pen.

This is what I thought of, when I thought of your line...


Morning: in the rose garden

Swish of summer sun;
ache of cold dew drops
in the morning, condensed into the cup

closed tight: a newborn’s fist
pinkly opening. Touch of wing beaten air,
long flicking tongues, and many feet

clinging to a scented promise. Unfurl
now, golden eye, gold as the sun
caught in a white halo; reach out:

long stems and velvet perfume.
Wide open. Breathe in morning air,
bright sunlight, soft-clasping leaf

brief and tremulous, and warm.
Spread your wings; send them tumbling
to the ground: white shower, pooled, a reflection

of life. Spilled from children’s laughing
hands, a path like a finger of light pointing out
towards the gate, and the world beyond.

Pendragon
09-13-2008, 06:23 PM
Fifth, you are a dear for starting this! Beautiful! Bow write poets, write!:)

autolycus
09-14-2008, 01:35 PM
A petal drifts onto the floor
A single teardrop salty falls
Her sable gown is out the door

I walk through many empty halls
Where ghostly echoes give me pause
The remnants of unanswered calls

I lose my mind without a cause
My inner rebel makes no noise
And bows to the unwritten laws

My inner dancer loses poise
My inner poet's words are terse
Silence rumbling through the noise

And here you see the kind of verse
And here you see my talent waste
As things default and even worse

The rose has wilted in distaste
I found a single hidden flaw
I overlooked in all my haste

For all the charm I ever saw
Was wrapped around a mortal fair
And flesh is red in tooth and claw

The other day I found a hair
A single strand of crimson hue
In ambush underneath the chair

And there it would have hidden too
Untouched, unseen by human view
Except that when I shut the door
I saw a petal hit the floor.

Virgil
09-14-2008, 01:57 PM
Great idea for a contest Pen. I'm not sure if I can participate. But I'll consider it. I hope this contest takes off.

Pendragon
09-15-2008, 09:05 AM
Wow! These two alone make the contest interesting! I hope more join! :thumbs_up

thegitksan
09-27-2008, 03:24 AM
A gentle petal on my skin, her kiss
drew out of me a shaky, wondering sigh
as lover-mine plucked roses from on high,
and blood-red lips bestowed their heated bliss.

Bent over me with fragrant skin and hair,
all tousled from our recent warm embrace,
she draws a finger 'cross my lips and face.
The sunlight glistens on her body bare.

Then all too soon, the day gives way to night;
too soon the petals fall and lose their blush;
it's gone, all gone; it's vanished in a rush.
And thorns remain, all cold and hard and bright.

Then, lost in shadows dark with cold and rime,
a final petal falls, entrapped in time.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Okay, that was definitely a challenge. I'm not completely pleased with this one, but it's past midnight, and so to bed.

:) Russell
thegitksan

Pendragon
09-27-2008, 08:37 AM
Deadline will be October 27, to give time for spooky Halloween poems/ Good luck! Very pleased with the three so far! :thumbs_up

Cellar Door
09-27-2008, 09:17 AM
of what use is love now
of what use all your guarantees
I'll love you until forever but
forever has arrived
be it no concern of mine
you'll never return except
in my memories, the last
duty I'll ever owe
anyone, especially
you- the rose petal
drifts to the floor-
what good is love
now

AuntShecky
09-27-2008, 03:40 PM
Ephemera


On the side of the trail the other day
a clump of wildflowers waved,
with the points of their dark purple petals
pointing to the early fall sun.

Those are New England asters, I told you,
Nova-angliae, rarer than white or periwinkle.
The supermarket sells them,
Twelve ninety-nine, per pot.

Why don't you pick some, you asked me.
No. They're growing here for a reason.
They're happy where they are,
not like the cultivated store-bought posies,

pricey because of their scarcity
at various seasons of the year.
Their short shelf-life is why they're prized
for their value in romance --

similarly the reason a man buys jewelry,
because even eternal gold is a trifle --
no real use beyond its luster,
lessened by a luminous face.

He values woman’s place, higher than money.
Same with fragile flowers, doomed to wilt.
Unlike love, they won't last, and that’s what
it means when a rose petal falls.

Pendragon
09-27-2008, 04:39 PM
Excellent poetry. One point: the line is a subject, so description is what is important. Including the line is a welcome bonus, but not the important part. Describing what the action of the falling petal makes you feel is the central part of the poem!

Onward poets!:):D

Silven
10-07-2008, 01:26 AM
Bright as moon lit lake of light
when evening throws a blazon night
luster shimmering folds apart
then opening to greet the sight

Open, not too far to give away,
your nestled secrets held at bay
and let you sit right where you lay
get on with your pleasured way

but alas, you know whats come must go
and wilt this rose must fade from thought
but not till its last one falls from court
petals strewn - rose bud did fault

Niamh
10-07-2008, 01:24 PM
Been a long time since i entered one of these poetry contests but heres my contrabution! :D

Lone Rose Weeps

A soft wind blows gently by
Caressing cold forgotten stones,
Pocked with lichen and moss.
Names once known, now faded. Forgotten.
A lone fox, moving around in mist
Tumbles rubble as it passes through
Gap in crumbling wall.
A lone rose, in cracked glass jar,
Droops sadly to the ground
Touching wilted petals
Fallen on the earths damp frosty floor.
Dew resting on end of petals
Cry silent tears, for long forgotten souls.

ampoule
10-09-2008, 04:14 PM
Leaves and Roses

Softly, softly floating down,
Red and russet, gold and brown,
That last petal letting go,
Soft somehow, supple, flows
To the floor in sync with autumn's twin.

Should I run and grab them both,
Press in pages that I loathe,
Crushed mid those in rosewood casket,
Finest linens cannot mask it,
A leaf, a rose, a tear let go again.

I sit stymied by the day,
Watch them dry and curl away,
I know that you will step on them,
When you come calling on a whim,
Noticing not our colors fading from within.

ampoule, October Ninth, TwoThousandEight

Niamh
10-09-2008, 04:23 PM
nice! i like that Ampoule!:thumbs_up

ampoule
10-10-2008, 06:22 PM
nice! i like that Ampoule!:thumbs_up

Thank you very much Niamh! I like yours as well.

Niamh
10-13-2008, 06:38 AM
I think this is a great idea. I'm surprised no one had thought of it before.....
just need to get more people involved.....

Virgil
10-13-2008, 08:56 AM
Pen, I'm working on one. I'm not a fast writer. When does the contest close?

Niamh
10-13-2008, 10:14 AM
Here is you answer Virgil.



Deadline will be October 27, to give time for spooky Halloween poems/ Good luck! Very pleased with the three so far! :thumbs_up

Virgil
10-13-2008, 05:50 PM
Oh good I got two weeks.

Niamh
10-13-2008, 06:02 PM
plenty of time for you virg!

Niamh
10-21-2008, 07:23 PM
bump!
.
.
.
.
.come on everyone! few days left!

Niamh
10-23-2008, 01:13 PM
Four days left everyone!!! :D

Pendragon
10-27-2008, 01:50 PM
Closed. Now I have to find me a winner. Tough job. ;)

Pendragon
10-28-2008, 08:23 AM
This contest was both an experiment and a success! I loved each and every poem, but in the end there can be only one.

Fifth: These lines were my favorite, a bold description of a rose opening:


closed tight: a newborn’s fist
pinkly opening. Touch of wing beaten air,
long flicking tongues, and many feet

Auto: The beginning was my favorite lines:

A petal drifts onto the floor
A single teardrop salty falls
Her sable gown is out the door

Sorrow encapsulated in a falling petal

Gitsan: The finial couplet of the wonderful sonnet:

Then, lost in shadows dark with cold and rime,
a final petal falls, entrapped in time.

Cellar: These lines say it all!

the rose petal
drifts to the floor-
what good is love
now

Auntie: Final stanza:

He values woman’s place, higher than money.
Same with fragile flowers, doomed to wilt.
Unlike love, they won't last, and that’s what
it means when a rose petal falls.

Love it, love it, love it!

Silven: Last stanza also:

but alas, you know whats come must go
and wilt this rose must fade from thought
but not till its last one falls from court
petals strewn - rose bud did fault

Even with the misspelling!

Niamh: Those last two lines are fraught with meaning:

Dew resting on end of petals
Cry silent tears, for long forgotten souls.

Also very touching!
Lady Amp: Your last line took the rose into real life:

I sit stymied by the day,
Watch them dry and curl away,
I know that you will step on them,
When you come calling on a whim,
Noticing not our colors fading from within.


Could I choose more than one, I undoubtedly would they are all very good. But I must choose one, and I choose Lady Ampoule for bring the roses to the cheeks at the end of her poem!

Thank you all who entered.

Lady Amp, choose the next subject:

TheFifthElement
10-28-2008, 09:47 AM
Thanks for the comments Pen, and congratulations Amp on a well deserved win :)

Niamh
10-28-2008, 06:31 PM
congrats Amp!!! Knew you would win this round. just loved you poem! cant wait for the next subject!

Silven
10-29-2008, 10:48 PM
Thanks for taking the time to properly judge this competition, I don't think anybody would dispute your choice.

However, is there something I'm missing... misspelling?

ampoule
10-30-2008, 07:07 AM
My goodness, Pen, thank you so much. I loved the subject you chose. I hope everyone will have time to ponder this next subject and write something wonderful for us....

'slowly, he strummed his guitar'

autolycus
10-30-2008, 07:37 AM
ampoule, congratulations – beautifully distilled emotions there... and now a bluesy kind of subject!

Pen, thanks for judging and summarising all the best lines too!

Pendragon
10-31-2008, 07:52 AM
The Guitar Player

Slowly he strummed his guitar,
The notes fell like raindrops in spring—
As he sang of love and the joy of just living
Of flowers and pets and old flames…

Slowly he strummed his guitar,
The notes were the warm summer breeze
He sang of passion and glory, and told the old stories,
Embellishing them all as he sang…

Slowly he strummed his guitar.
The notes fell like the cold rains in fall—
Of he sung of promises broken and words best left unspoken,
Of heartbreak and gloom and despair…

Slowly he strummed his guitar,
The notes broke like winter ice—
He sang of death and destruction, of suicide and pain,
Depression had taken its toll…

Now he sits in the institution, locked away from it all:
Slowly he strums his guitar…

Pendragon
© 11/31/08

ampoule
11-03-2008, 05:08 PM
Nice one Pen.

Silven
11-03-2008, 08:09 PM
A solemn somber sober mood,
eased from the vibrato brood,
as slowly strumming strings are skewed,
and quelling my internal feud.

A lonely leeway lacking you,
exposes me - a lonely view,
string by aching string its true,
denied it... but I'm missing you.

An image inks inside my brain,
a high, much higher than cocaine,
the strings do not release disdain,
and once again I feel this pain.

Further into corner backing slow,
the solemn strum of my guitar sings woe,
and passive idle hand last time is thrown,
down to hit the strings... the strings that know.

Ronak
11-03-2008, 08:37 PM
what?

Silven
11-03-2008, 11:19 PM
Ronak, please clarify your query?

AuntShecky
11-07-2008, 12:43 PM
Dear Lovely Lady Ampoule,
I would like to jump onboard, but how much time do I have?
In other words, when's the deadline?
Auntie

ampoule
11-07-2008, 04:07 PM
Let's make the deadline November 27th.

AuntShecky
11-10-2008, 02:57 PM
Can Anybody Play?


Unlike pianos or sets of drums
whose bulk determines where jazz hums,
one easily totes the thing he strums.

It strings along wherever it’s sent,
whether bought or borrowed or lent,
this most democratic instrument!

Its leveling appeal seems the norm
across each home, apartment, and dorm
where folks are free from fear of form,

the imprimatur from music’s lords.
With simple songs the guitar affords
some quick and easily-picked-up chords.

If stymied by symphonic subtlety,
and not known for virtuosity,
one may dare to sing a bit off-key,

and flub a note, yet still feel proud.
A gentle mistake won’t sway the crowd
who’ll miss it for sure. (Just play it loud.)

Pendragon
11-11-2008, 09:19 AM
Nice one. Auntie! :thumbs_up

ampoule
11-17-2008, 09:50 AM
Yes, I like them both. Anyone else for...."slowly, he strummed his guitar".
Deadline: November 27

ampoule
11-25-2008, 10:01 AM
Anyone else for...."slowly, he strummed his guitar".
Deadline: November 27

Just two days left and some of you are going to be busy with Thanksgiving. Join the 'jam'. :)

autolycus
11-27-2008, 04:27 AM
This tale is of a time ago,
A tale of seven strings;
He sat alone in dark and gloom
And gave the angels wings.

He strummed them all, then each one slow,
As if he tested glass;
He plucked them lone with rare aplomb
To make sure all would pass.

The first string gave a fearsome tone
That broke the silent night;
He drawled alone in lightened room
"Land's sakes, that was a fright."

The second string was mournful sure
Like waters under earth;
He groaned alone like ancient tomb
"We need a bit more mirth."

The third string you could hear the leaves
A-rustling in the breeze;
He laughed alone in airy home
"Ah, that is sure to please."

The fourth string was the central one
And sounded middle G;
A proud cyclone of piercing tone
The stars came out to see.

The fifth string gave uneven notes
And even fishier thirds;
Within his bones he heard the moans
"Well, this one's for the birds."

The sixth string made his fingers sore,
It really was that thin;
Inside the zone of great unknown
It sounded black as sin.

He strummed them slow and made it grow
But Seven broke in twain;
So he intoned, "Well, that's all gone,
Let's take a break again."

And that is why on seventh day
We humans take a holiday.

ampoule
11-30-2008, 10:20 AM
Bad weekend to close a contest. Shame on me. I'll be back. Thanks to all who entered. I'll have to post the winner tomorrow.

ampoule
12-02-2008, 06:10 PM
Wow you guys. I love these poems.

Pendragon...for some reason as I read yours I thought of the lovely ballad sung by Tom T. Hall, "Old Dogs and Children and Watermelon Wine". I felt like I was sitting right there with your guitar player hearing him strum his life. I was very moved by that thought and your poem.

Silven...that first line, love it, and those first two verses knocked my socks off, and that ending, "the strings that know". Wonderful.

Aunt Shecky...loved your rhyme so much. You are so clever and your gentle humor, especially about that flubbed note at the end. At last week's jam session everyone was looking around because someone was just a bit out of tune. After awhile everyone starts looking more inward at their own playing wondering if they are the culprit.

Autolycus...I loved how you compared the strings to creation and how wonderful at the end that 'he' played it cool and didn't smash the smithereens out of the blasted thing.

I love them all. As everyone says in every contest it's almost impossible to choose just one, butttttttt......

Autolycus, I will go with yours. Now you get to choose the next fragment or subject.
And here is a little prize...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7qpfGVUd8c&feature=related

autolycus
12-03-2008, 07:16 AM
Aww... thanks very much, ampoule! And thanks for the video of one of my favourite songs too!

=====

The next subject will be: "someone steps out from the shadows onto a cold winter street..."

Let's make the deadline 6th Jan, which is Twelfth Night!

Silven
12-05-2008, 01:04 AM
Autolycus, yes your poem is a clear winner here.

You had my vote from the time I read it but didn't want to influence the judgment.

And AuntShecky, I loved your three line verses, which gave the poem great melodic overtones, and separated its nature from the norm - which worked well with the light your poem shed on the humble guitar.

Great efforts by all.

I look forward to submitting an entry for "someone steps out from the shadows onto a cold winter street..." - A great, visual starting point.

AuntShecky
12-10-2008, 04:00 PM
Slant

When city streets are wet at just past dusk,
their lamps reflecting danger and romance,
the sidewalk catches strides both slow and brisk
as night arrives with darker ambience.
Then, unannounced the temperature drops.
It fronts the water with a knife-thin cloak.
The shore lights shimmer down in frosty drips
on the river's replies, winking like a clock.
Some footsteps echo like stinging slaps
against such chill, bone-deep cold won't compare.
On changing shadows uncertainty slips--
do secret allies or unknown foes conspire?
They could conceal a guerdon of golden grace
or hide a threat, insidious as black ice.

autolycus
12-13-2008, 07:10 AM
Whoa, AuntShecky! Beautiful images and half-rhymes there...

Plenty of time left; let's hope to see more excellent poetry!

Pendragon
12-20-2008, 03:07 PM
Solitude

His cardboard box is all that he has ever known,
With newspapers for blankets to keep out the snow,
Perhaps he had different life before, but memory is gone
He hugs his bottle trying to drown out his nightmarish foe
His lunch came from the dumpster behind the usual place,
No breakfast this morning for this forgotten soul.
He’ll take dinner at the mission if he can find a space,
Sermon and soup and crackers to help body and soul.
He dreams of better things lying there in the dark,
One ear always open for people will even rob the destitute.
His small fire has died down to just a fragrant spark—
What keeps him going sometimes he wishes that he knew.
But now he hears the jingling pockets and approaching feet,
So someone steps out from the shadows onto a cold winter street…

Pendragon
© 12/20/08

Silven
12-29-2008, 07:51 PM
A cold and quiet city night,
A restless mood - the vampire’s bite
A haze is cut by moons blue light
To offer you a dim lit sight

Buildings buttress from cobble streets
Foundations built from stone & brick
And rise beyond what you can see
You think – “the devils walking stick”.

But down here now sight aggregates
The chap of a lighter illuminates
A scarred face is offered break
From shadows that envelope sake

Light goes out, now a red glow
Lifted to face the burning ember grows
And smoke swirls round as think as dough
A man begins to move now, slow

autolycus
01-09-2009, 01:14 PM
Contest is closed... I will spend this weekend working on it!

autolycus
01-12-2009, 09:09 AM
Hi there!

Only three entries this time, but I liked each of them, for very different things.

'Slant' (by AuntShecky) has probably the best use of language of the three. It was chilling and exact, like a scalpel's edge. The half-rhymes were well done, and the image conjured was romantic in its foreboding.

'Solitude' (by Pendragon) is probably the most humanly intense of the three. The psychological word-picture, the feel and taste of the atmosphere — these are especially strong in the poem, with a sense of loneliness and loss.

Silven's poem is one that is almost cinematic. It reminds one of vampire movies, of a kind of Batman's Gotham City, and then it zooms down towards the lead character. I liked the movement, and the ambiguity of many of the lines.

=====

All that said, I'm going to go with Pen's poem 'Solitude'. The edge it had over its beautiful competitors was, I think, the sheer sense of humanity that ought to go with the idea of 'someone' — a person who is nameless but still has a clearly-defined self. It was not an easy choice!

Pen, congratulations, and it's your term to propose a subject!

Pendragon
01-12-2009, 09:28 PM
Thanks, Auto

Let's see...

"pain dances in like an intimate friend..."

Silven
01-16-2009, 08:31 AM
Decided to remove my entry. Sorry.

Pendragon
01-19-2009, 03:28 PM
Come on, people, one poem does not a contest make. Skilled you are. There is no try...

NickAdams
01-19-2009, 05:20 PM
Algo Lagain


I removed my slacks
and slacked my briefs.
In brief, I stood exposed.
So my caretaker,
dear caretaker,
could throwaway my clothes.

she said a word,
I disagreed,
she commanded me,
"On your knees,"
I disagreed,
for I had not reached a word.

We deliberated briefly,
before i whispered in Her ear
and later when i would repeat the word
She would say She didn't hear.

Behold the pine-implement,
behold he exposed,
behold a pale flog,
O! a bottom's glow.

Pendragon
01-19-2009, 05:45 PM
Decided to remove my entry. Sorry.
Was it something I said? :bawling:

NickAdams
01-19-2009, 05:48 PM
It took me an hour to come up with that poem, so there could be more than one entry.:(

Silven
01-20-2009, 04:57 AM
Not at all Pen'.

You may have noticed, that poem looked a little out of place for the title of your contest. In fact I wrote the poem years ago, and your title reminded me of it.

The reason I removed it was because that poem is very special to me, and I actually did not want it judged.

I will try and re-submit something soon.

lucidnightmares
01-20-2009, 10:16 PM
pain dances in like an intimate friend
familiar and sadly comforting
lost in my own wick world of pretend
tear me from the smiles facade

let my pain show through
for all of them to see
give way to the taboo
of despairs embrace

the memories fade
and light grows soft
no longer afraid
no longer afraid...

AuntShecky
01-25-2009, 03:21 PM
{ I don't know about the dancing in, but it is about pain. . .}

For Medicinal Purposes Only

The pharmaceutical potentates gain
points with an endless game versus pain,

cranking out pricey capsules by the millions,
racking up sharp profits by the billions,

propping up ads whose tiny print occludes
the fearsome side effects each dose includes.

As alternatives to bait-and-switchery,
home brews bubble just north of witchery:

woodland herbs and blooms and backyard botanics
to snub corporate chemicals and mechanics.

Such irksome ailments as warts or bunions
may meet their banes in garlic and onions.

The nagging malaise which a callus hardens on
could soften with balm from the wort of St. John.

A sagging libido, with its play stopped at “fore,”
recruits a concoction to make it rise, shoot, and score.

Strange-smelling roots set a-boil in a pot
might spark a desired pregnancy (or not.)

When acres of crops, planted by folksy lore,
harvest sad failure, we're still mad and sore.

With scripted pills and discount drugs in bins
we fight on and on. But pain always wins.

Pendragon
02-02-2009, 04:19 PM
End of February will be closing time for this contest. Still time to join in the fun. :D

JBI
02-02-2009, 04:25 PM
I'll be writing one soon, though it will be horribly different from the current entries - how is the voting going to go?

alakungfu
02-05-2009, 09:10 PM
The fateful wind



Fury,
In all his dimensions,
Carouses
Acridly
In the deep night
To get his bearings.
He beats on the absent milk pans,
Straightening out his auditory senses
And adjusting his course.
He whips on ,
Up the narrow streets,
Rain whistling too near his features.
Suddenly afraid of the slivering shadows
That stretch out in prisms --
They conduct him through
Some sudden onslaught
And turbulent tumult,
Stronger than turpitude,
Deadlier than dynamite.
The fray will subside
But only after he is gone
And immemorially forgotten,
To be summoned back
On some unknown miserable chance.

Pendragon
03-01-2009, 09:21 AM
lucid is the winner of this contest. Congrats!:thumbs_up

Shruti Amar
03-11-2009, 11:57 AM
A letter to my Brother

you are the flower of Eden
Please always do leave in my Heart
I request the wind that blows
To touch you with my Warmth

please write your comments

lucidnightmares
03-11-2009, 08:29 PM
wow.
thanks alot Pen, wasn`t expecting that.
haven`t been on in the longest time.
sorry for that.
ok um...so the next is
"a feather on my heart of lead"

alakungfu
03-12-2009, 03:23 PM
The ranks drew in along the march.
We forded a slatted bridge that hedged
The slanted eye of the horizon.
Among the cliffs, our company wedged.

Once past the rocks, bean fields extended.
We hoped to cross the green unharassed,
But suspended our breaths when the glen came alive
And we traded fire in the morass.

When the sun had faded pale we garnered our retreat.
The youngest soldier of my men lost his fight this time:
All that was left with his effects was a lead heart locket
On a chain that bore the legend "Peace" in a serrated rind.

The residual seemed a weary load to send back to Mother.
I propped his clothes in to a crate but before I closed it up
I placed in a feather from the hawks in the canyon
That had swallowed the cliff face shut.

lucidnightmares
03-14-2009, 08:59 PM
great poem alakungfu, would have never suspected that one.
looking forward to judging this:D

AuntShecky
03-16-2009, 02:23 PM
I agree, Lucid, that the first posting for your chosen subject is a good one, but could you please tell the rest of us when the deadline is ? ( As for the "feather" poem, I'm working on it, I'm "on" it, etc.)

The Comedian
03-16-2009, 03:31 PM
I'll toss my feather into this contest. . .

A Feather on my Heart of Lead

I killed those ducks with buckshot
As they flew

D
O
W
N

To land in the marsh for the night

My blind was no blind at all: a fallen log near the shore,
Giving me a clear lane to fire

Pump!

and fire again.

Twenty gauge gun, lead shot: death now, death later.
My dog didn’t care.
Sundered feathers transfixed four-chambered pump with leaden grit and a spear of eiderdown.
Nobody knew what hit ‘em.

AuntShecky
03-18-2009, 05:07 PM
Net Weight

Among the rugged luggage that I've clutched
a cudgel, rough and heavy as a grunt,
makes tougher calluses on hands ill-dealt.
A noncommittal poker mug occludes
the ache from sticky grips. The better score
I couldn't grab, not with this life-long schneid.

The tickle of a feather’s wispy tip –
how irksome and annoying when one’s hands
are full! It’s pesky, like a tardy sneeze.

Yet there’s a capacity for the risible,
a soft spot for capricious balms:
the lingering sibilance of a snappy song,
a rustling bird who nestles in the brush –
a light and airy cache easier to tote,
its leather plushy, all swaddled in suede.

lucidnightmares
03-20-2009, 12:51 AM
again 2 more great poems:D
i`m almost scared to judge them:lol:
as for the due date let`s say, April....11th sound good??

Silven
03-25-2009, 08:15 AM
My attempt:

A faint memory can thus posses,
the crowning jewel of ones success,
- life's trials are cruel, and quite unkempt,
but force our hand to march for best

and force us thus to take effect
and peer with other brethren
we form the links, with passing tests
the chains that give our freedom strength

but as for one - must be for all
and break - a link does cause a roll
bouncing where it may - this ball
does damage down the line some more

but whence you ask does lead strike heart,
-when none is there to break ones strife,
when heavy heart puts out the fire
the world is driven by desire...

ampoule
04-05-2009, 08:20 AM
The residual seemed a weary load to send back to Mother.
I propped his clothes in to a crate but before I closed it up
I placed in a feather from the hawks in the canyon
That had swallowed the cliff face shut.

I don't know if we are supposed to comment here but I just have to say this gave me chills. Your poem reminded me of the wonderful novel by Geraldine Brooks, March.

alakungfu
04-06-2009, 10:15 AM
Thank you, ampoule I grew up watching war movies and one thing about them is that they keep getting better, so they inspire you to outdo the last one, they do for me anyway.

lucidnightmares
04-11-2009, 04:12 PM
ok so it`s the 11th
congratulations alakungfu.
you wins

alakungfu
04-13-2009, 03:02 PM
Thank you, lucidnightmares. I have a subject that's always appealed to me. I hope it appeals to the rest of you. It's "mermaid on the rocks" interpreted any way you want. We'll set the deadline at May 10.

AuntShecky
04-16-2009, 01:44 PM
[Okay, then, I'm going w. a new one]:

Any Port in a Storm

Said a salt left too long at sea
when a dugong climbed up on his knee:
“It might be the thick fog
or those three pints of grog –
But she looks like a mermaid to me!”

~Sophia~
04-16-2009, 07:03 PM
^^^ Love that AuntShecky! Think I'll be a touch more dramatic! http://www.websmileys.com/sm/violent/sterb232.gif

Dashed

Lorelei, Nymph, Siren, Mermaid -
all beguiling rockers of the sea.
Scaled notes decanting those
alluring urchins known
as the femme fatale - she.

But there is only one man
that can cause a woman to
fall from cliff to sea, bereft
of rhyme and reason, it is
the Poet known as - he.

I must remember to remember
it was not a twilight kiss that
ebbed the ocean blue. It was
the spill of a dark ink well that
drowned the dame formerly
known as - me.

http://www.websmileys.com/sm/violent/sterb064.gif

PrinceMyshkin
04-17-2009, 12:26 PM
I was enjoying an order of bagels & lox
with some of the guys from down on the docks.
Some were in sandals, some just in socks
discussing Zeno’s Paradox
when we caught sight of a maiden with long, flowing locks!

“Wow!” said one of us, “Will you look at that fox!”
She was beautiful enough to stop all our clocks,
that mermaid sitting out on the rocks!

alakungfu
04-17-2009, 01:35 PM
Charming poems, I must say. I can see that choosing will be a delightful chore, except that I'll have to leave some out. Drat.

Bloomsday
04-24-2009, 12:36 AM
Goodbye

Here I sit,
Lost in the land of folklore
And fastasy.

I want to be beautiful
I want to be you,
But I can't, you see.

From what they've read
I should be different
I should be you.

My hair grey,
My body round.
They didn't used to.

They come from afar
To adore you
And point out my decay.

Here I sit on the rocks.
Nothing to lose
So I'll call it a day.

alakungfu
04-27-2009, 09:04 AM
very lovely poem. I appreciate the contrast you've used.

autolycus
04-28-2009, 02:10 AM
"I'll have a Mermaid on the Rocks," he said.
Crossing the Bar, he was, before putting
Out to sea. I laughed (men have died for that,
But now my siren days are long ago).

He was formal in dress I found quite odd;
My slitted gills fluttered in discomfort.
The tux was white, the car was whiter still:
I felt sympathy for Lotus eaters.

Somebody launched a torpedo at him;
Irritated, I quenched it in a flash.
"Did you see that?" he asked, blue eyes twinkling.
"There's no such thing as a free launch," I said.

I was outside the car of course; no way
Would I have fit my nether parts into
The shallow well beneath the narrow seats.
I sensed he was amused, and I was too.

"I'm headed next for cold and chilly climes,"
He said, and added curiously, "How fast
Can you go, charming maiden of the sea?"
Old maiden I, but he had charm enough.

I played him fast — we tied at sixty knots;
The sea around us boiled and churned away.
He lost the sleepy look as we sped on,
Our competition made him quite a wake.

I followed him along the Baltic coast.
He asked, "Where do you live, where is your home?"
He did not see my tears, and I dead-panned,
"As you can see, I live among the Finns."

Somewhere towards Archangel we made love;
I have a weakness for a Navy man.
But I regret to say I am part fish,
And so he had no Mermaid on the Rocks.

alakungfu
04-28-2009, 09:51 AM
That poem is positively inspired autolycus. I'm a sucker for character development. Bravo! This contest is going to be quite a job to judge though.

alakungfu
05-11-2009, 01:30 PM
autolycus, you win this one. Congratulations.

autolycus
05-11-2009, 11:30 PM
alakungfu, I'm surprised and honoured; I think it's a weird and wonderful thing that somehow I've ended up with both the 'subject' and 'form' poetry competitions on my hands! thank you...

=====

The subject for this next round is 'Cat Watching'. I've always found it interesting to watch cats or be watched by them... :)

Deadline is 6 June 2009; 8 pm EST (GMT-4).

Have fun!

Monamy
05-12-2009, 06:22 AM
I'm putting this poem here because it... somewhat suits the chosen subject, I've written this one long ago I was so surprised to find it in my folders. Sorry if it leaves a bad taste at the end.
_____________

I wander wander everywhere.
--Just say the word, I've been there!
I do what I want, go where I want,
my mind knows no can't

I moved to a new house recently
in fact, I thought I'll never be happy.
I've been longing to my old place
where I had everything at my pace.

Yet, this... guy, was true and kind
to the point that I didn't really mind
spending the rest of my life by his side
until a better place for me I find

He shouts Don't do this and that
well, I can't help it, I'm a curious cat.
He frowns Oh man, stop jumping to my bed
but at the end, I win him with a tilt of my head

Never thought I'd like the sensation
of being this creature's main attention.
Rubbing my fur, playing with me using a linen ball...
Hey, this kind of life is not half bad at all!

It's been three months now... I didn't know
that, to an ugly end, all this will go.
To my old place... yea, I'm back again,
with a 'Tom' tag still on my neck chain.

I vowed not to get attached to another,
as this parting was so heavy and bitter.
He died, and I never knew of what matter,
but this vow I keep... never another...

AuntShecky
05-14-2009, 12:04 PM
Cats 9, Humans 1

On a level playing field
they're not hard to see:

dozing behind a window screen
or casing some dismal cul-de-sac;

sharing an apartment with a single gal
on lonely Saturday nights;

hitching a ride on Halloween brooms
or stalking smarter cartoon mice;

filling space on old Egyptian walls
or posted on poles declaring them lost.

On occasion stuck up
in a tree, like us;

unlike us, always
landing on their feet.

In common, perhaps
a mutual need, perhaps not.

They live, we live -- in tandem,
like parallels, never meeting.

alakungfu
05-15-2009, 01:46 PM
Provocative vulnerability

Spewing from

Groomed tendrils

And costumes

And accessories

Tenderly outfitted.

Premature felines

Frisk freely

Or haunt the sidelines

Headily

In the prime

Of their attractive

Natures,

Tares from

The frumpy mousetrappers

Waiting in their

Round middle-section-

Pampered frames.

Too kewpie;

Cutie coos,

“What’s to become

Of you?”

autolycus
05-17-2009, 04:46 AM
Oh dear, this is going to be one of the difficult competitions... :)

qimissung
05-30-2009, 07:21 PM
lucy who was wild and whom I taught to trust
gave birth
and there they were all six
a multi-colored quilt of breathing fur
but one was the smallest of them all
born naked as a human babe
and just as helpless
I hovered, wondered, scratched my head
finally resolving his urgent need to live
with a strip of the softest, oldest cloth
dipped tenderly, hopefully
as a spring day, in formula
held him cupped in my hand;
his tiny head lay limp as string
on my raft of fingers
then, as though fishing for the
wiliest catfish, lowered the bait
of life as near his mouth as I could get
he sought it like his mother’s teat
sucked once, twice then dropped exhausted
I fed him in the night
stood watch all next day
he and I, partners in crime,
determined together to stay death’s hand
at last I had to put him back and
trust to Mother Nature, that merciless wench,
but luck was with us and we triumphed
he lived
others have done more, I know
still, when I look at him
dancing under my stroking hand
I think “I saved him”
and I am proud

alexar
06-05-2009, 06:39 PM
You little assassin.
Jesus you did it again.
They say this is a gift
For me. Thanks cat. Half a mouse.
OK more than half.
Next time stick to chocolates.

Yesterday I walked out on the grass
And heard a mew
And there you were
And there was another creature
Before you, helpless, damaged, breathing hard.
Blue, feathered, tiny,
Breathing hard.

I can do without these dilemmas,
I have enough dilemmas, cat.

autolycus
06-07-2009, 08:07 AM
OK, looks like we're nearly done...

autolycus
06-08-2009, 05:14 AM
Not to be overly polite or anything, but this was a tough one in many ways. What's a cat all about? Why are we watching, what are we watching, is the cat watching us? I enjoyed the poems, and like cats, they were all the same but very different.

Monamy's cat-viewpoint monologue was very touching while Aunt Shecky's trim and interesting (and somehow mathematical) poem was something really to ponder. Alakungfu's haiku-like work was another one like that, except that it reminded me of Ira Levin's 'The Stepford Wives', somehow... Qimissung's story of the rescued kitten was a very heartfelt piece; my own kittens (well, now two late cats and one middle-aged one) were all rescues. But argh, Alexar sort of captured the essence of a particular kind of human-cat relationship.

Decisions, decisions. To paraphrase,

"I can do without these decisions,
I have enough decisions, Alexar."

It seems to capture the spirit of this contest too, in some ways. For a very sharp and punchy piece which has a catlike spirit all the way through, I've decided Alexar wins and will give us the next topic. Congrats!

alexar
06-08-2009, 06:05 AM
Hey thanks Autolycus! You never picked up a more unconsidered trifle!

...and now I have another dilemma...

ok my theme is 'every time it rains'.

If I give about three weeks, is that ok? Someone tell me if it should be different, I'm new. So the deadline is 29 June, 8pm in the UK (which is where I am).

Thanks again, I enjoyed the other poems and they inspired me!

Monamy
06-09-2009, 12:13 AM
To be honest, I did have the feeling that alexar will win this one...

what?

No, really, I did!

Oh nevermind :D Congrats, Alexar, and welcome to Let Nit!
Everytime it rains? Hmm, I'm living in an island that is RARELY blessed with rain so I wouldn't know :lol: I'll give it a try later though, seems interesting:thumbs_up

alexar
06-09-2009, 05:12 AM
Thanks for the welcome Monamy!

I don't mind if you read 'every time it rains' any way it will read, so if it's about a once-in-ten-years rain, that's got to be ok. Come to think of it I kind of like that idea.

qimissung
06-10-2009, 01:45 PM
Congratulations, alexar. I also liked your poem a great deal. It had a liveliness and warmth to it, however much an 'unconsidered trifle' it was! I love the first lines:

"You little assassin.
Jesus, you did it again" :lol:

If that isn't a cat all over-and then they are making those cute little noises like "See what I did?!"

alexar
06-10-2009, 05:08 PM
Bless you qimissung. Yes my cats are a pair of little black killers. I tried to bell them but they have snakelike heads and off came the collars, so the wildlife continues to pay the ultimate price for their beautiful presence.

Let's have a rain poem then.

alakungfu
06-10-2009, 07:36 PM
When we were starting
a Zen couple in transit
tears bound up our sighs

We survived rivals
honeymoon night together
swore vows at the Falls

Anniversaries
at the neighbourhood fountain
throwing pennies in

Tomorrows pressed like
dried rainbows in mesh scrapbooks
beckon to the years

Now, time after time, it rains
like the times that bid their grace.

rabid reader
06-12-2009, 05:27 PM
These are the Rainy Days

The great purge, of those dirty.
It cleans with natures fury.
The sky though wet may blaze
These are the rainy days.

As the window’s threatened with ever gust
The hearth sizzles, and begins to rust
The warmth sinks, in a dreary haze
These are the rainy days.

The lights flicker, with thunderclap
The sockets simmer with a spark and zap
As the clouds thicken, and look glazed
These are the rainy days

As hopelessness begin to sink
The clouds part and one thinks
That rainbows have the prettiest face
These are, the moments of grace.

Rabid Reader

alexar
06-13-2009, 02:20 PM
Ah we have a competition. Excellent! Thanks to alakungfu and rabid reader for joining in. I like the droplets that fall all the way through 'Waterford Crystal', and the rhymes through 'Rainy Days' that by the end seem inevitably to have led to the word 'grace'.

I like the rain.

Silven
06-14-2009, 07:22 AM
Then it rains...


Closet closed, cant get away,
not random, when you look that way,
cant stand it, that one day I'll pay,
lest right now - it rain again.

a running score, me one them four,
running faster, than thought before,
brought to dawn, and struck my core,
and look - its raining down some more

Fate repay, and congregate
and conjure spell to emulate,
a normal life be mine today
and fix the rain to go away!

Pendragon
06-14-2009, 12:21 PM
After the Flood

There came a time, in the early spring,
when the creek overflowed
like a stopped-up commode,
and the Dark Clouds wept
as if the Earth had died.
The lightsabers flashed as the Duel continued,
the Darkside of the Force battling to stay.
We waded the water, and talked about Arks.
Flat-bottomed boats took the place of taxies.
We hung our keepsakes and memories out to dry,
scraped up the gooey remnants of our lives,
and sloshed on.
Some things could be replaced.
Some could not.
We buried our dead quietly.
Our tears rivaled the torrential rain
that had caused all of this heartache, sorrow, and madness.
But, it was time to rebuild.
We intended to stay.
Business as usual—
almost.

Pendragon

alexar
06-14-2009, 05:35 PM
Thanks Silven and Pendragon. An almost claustrophobic, personal piece with insistent rhymes that I loved - and an epic-scale bleeding chunk of history. It's dawning on me that I'll have to judge these. Hmm.

qimissung
06-16-2009, 01:00 AM
Every time it rains
Gaia washes out her hair
Washes out the dust and smoke
The desiccated leaves
The dung and the stink
And the unfettered flotsam
Of human endeavors

Languorously she scoops
Sea foam with a negligent hand
Luxuriously lathers her
Shining tresses, brown strands and gold
Intertwined each lock reflecting
the variegated hues of cinnamon
and saffron and poppy and bark

she runs her fingers through the
valleys and crevasses of the mountains
the towers and canyons of the cities
the trenches and abysses
of the oceans and the seas
with a gesture smooths
the desert and the plains

then rinses in the downpour
the foamy brew of beaches
and the surf
rinses in the torrent
in the deluge in the shower
glories in the water
cascading from her brow

with a flourish throws back
her mighty mane
creating without a thought
a tidal wave a thunderstorm
a hurricane of seas that make her
locks as black as night
oh to be a goddess, to be revered again

with nimble fingers she
brushes out the tangled glory
shining in the apple sun
lemon swirling in the air around her
pink rosebuds to lay on her Madonna brow
revels in the lightness of her being
every time it rains every time it rains

AuntShecky
06-16-2009, 02:15 PM
Weather Report

The gray outside invades the room,
where the air’s already a heavy drudge
and the mood darkens into smoky glass.
Plans drop as more thick clouds loom
and drip, drip, dr –-

now it’s coming earnestly down.

Faces segue from wince to frown
With their favorite steeds washed off the grass,
or their little picnics ruined, alas.
Me, I can't see the silver behind the gloom
But then, who am I to begrudge?

When good turf’s pounded into sludge
worms will come up, but so might blooms,
defying the odds. Splashing sad streams
the weeping window doesn't reflect
facts that we occasionally neglect:

at the sky’s soft edge the sun’s dry traces
mirror themselves in brightening faces;
that after a storm, comes a cooling breeze,
releasing pressure through a timely sneeze,
and relieving brains and bones with lesser pains --

sometimes -- but not every-- time it rains.

alexar
06-18-2009, 05:34 AM
...oh my goodness two magnificent poems. I am feeling unworthy! Thank you qimissung and AuntShecky for responding to my theme with respectively a beautifully, oh, preraphaelite-esque (ugh! but you know what I mean) allegorical scene, and with a poem that combines colloquial ease with tight musical patterning and produces that rare thing, wit...

qimissung
06-20-2009, 12:38 AM
AusntShecky is witty, isn't she?

alexar
06-21-2009, 05:09 AM
AusntShecky is witty, isn't she?

:) she is. And you are lyrical and vivid :). Thank you all for sending these poems, there is something magical about having occasioned them.

alexar
06-27-2009, 09:37 AM
OK, just a couple more days to go...

alexar
06-29-2009, 11:13 AM
Four hours to go.

alexar
06-29-2009, 03:41 PM
is finally here. OK let's take a look:

Waterford Crystal

When we were starting
a Zen couple in transit
tears bound up our sighs

We survived rivals
honeymoon night together
swore vows at the Falls

Anniversaries
at the neighbourhood fountain
throwing pennies in

Tomorrows pressed like
dried rainbows in mesh scrapbooks
beckon to the years

Now, time after time, it rains
like the times that bid their grace.

(Alakungfu)

I loved this. There's a hidden progression - tears, Falls, fountain, rainbows - that is so beautiful a response to the subject. And a sense of honesty, and being true to a relationship. The last line is very beautiful, and has a sweet mystery.

These are the Rainy Days

The great purge, of those dirty.
It cleans with natures fury.
The sky though wet may blaze
These are the rainy days.

As the window’s threatened with ever gust
The hearth sizzles, and begins to rust
The warmth sinks, in a dreary haze
These are the rainy days.

The lights flicker, with thunderclap
The sockets simmer with a spark and zap
As the clouds thicken, and look glazed
These are the rainy days

As hopelessness begin to sink
The clouds part and one thinks
That rainbows have the prettiest face
These are, the moments of grace.

(Rabid Reader)

I am a complete sucker for poetic repetition-with-variations. I liked the way the idea of grace was picked up from the previous poem. We are writing to one another; poetry rarely does that.


Then it rains...

Closet closed, cant get away,
not random, when you look that way,
cant stand it, that one day I'll pay,
lest right now - it rain again.

a running score, me one them four,
running faster, than thought before,
brought to dawn, and struck my core,
and look - its raining down some more

Fate repay, and congregate
and conjure spell to emulate,
a normal life be mine today
and fix the rain to go away!

(Silven)

This manages to be intensely personal and highly communicative at once. The rhymes add to the intensity. Yes it is just like a spell, Silven. Magical.


After the Flood

There came a time, in the early spring,
when the creek overflowed
like a stopped-up commode,
and the Dark Clouds wept
as if the Earth had died.
The lightsabers flashed as the Duel continued,
the Darkside of the Force battling to stay.
We waded the water, and talked about Arks.
Flat-bottomed boats took the place of taxies.
We hung our keepsakes and memories out to dry,
scraped up the gooey remnants of our lives,
and sloshed on.
Some things could be replaced.
Some could not.
We buried our dead quietly.
Our tears rivaled the torrential rain
that had caused all of this heartache, sorrow, and madness.
But, it was time to rebuild.
We intended to stay.
Business as usual—
almost.

(Pendragon)

An epic quality here. Also a sense of being sick of war, and not knowing how to get outside it: 'Some things could be replaced./Some could not.'


Gaia's hair, as black as night

Every time it rains
Gaia washes out her hair
Washes out the dust and smoke
The desiccated leaves
The dung and the stink
And the unfettered flotsam
Of human endeavors

Languorously she scoops
Sea foam with a negligent hand
Luxuriously lathers her
Shining tresses, brown strands and gold
Intertwined each lock reflecting
the variegated hues of cinnamon
and saffron and poppy and bark

she runs her fingers through the
valleys and crevasses of the mountains
the towers and canyons of the cities
the trenches and abysses
of the oceans and the seas
with a gesture smooths
the desert and the plains

then rinses in the downpour
the foamy brew of beaches
and the surf
rinses in the torrent
in the deluge in the shower
glories in the water
cascading from her brow

with a flourish throws back
her mighty mane
creating without a thought
a tidal wave a thunderstorm
a hurricane of seas that make her
locks as black as night
oh to be a goddess, to be revered again

with nimble fingers she
brushes out the tangled glory
shining in the apple sun
lemon swirling in the air around her
pink rosebuds to lay on her Madonna brow
revels in the lightness of her being
every time it rains every time it rains

(qimissung)

Allegory is another of my favourite things, and this one works so completely, turning the rain falling on the earth into a living magic. The repetition of my title phrase in the last line was a charm!


Weather Report

The gray outside invades the room,
where the air’s already a heavy drudge
and the mood darkens into smoky glass.
Plans drop as more thick clouds loom
and drip, drip, dr –-

now it’s coming earnestly down.

Faces segue from wince to frown
With their favorite steeds washed off the grass,
or their little picnics ruined, alas.
Me, I can't see the silver behind the gloom
But then, who am I to begrudge?

When good turf’s pounded into sludge
worms will come up, but so might blooms,
defying the odds. Splashing sad streams
the weeping window doesn't reflect
facts that we occasionally neglect:

at the sky’s soft edge the sun’s dry traces
mirror themselves in brightening faces;
that after a storm, comes a cooling breeze,
releasing pressure through a timely sneeze,
and relieving brains and bones with lesser pains --

sometimes -- but not every-- time it rains.

(AuntShecky)

I liked this worldly poem. 'and drip, drip, dr –-//now it’s coming earnestly down.' enacts a real moment dramatically and wittily. 'worms will come up, but so might blooms' has aphoristic power. I love the knowing caveat in the last line.


OK which is the nearest to perfection. I'm hesitating between Alakungfu's suggestive haiku stanzas, and qimissung's grand-scale imagery. As a pure personal thing I think I like Alakungfu's best, marginally... but I'm just not totally sure about the last stanza,I mean I love the last line, but not sure I quite get the whole stanza... and qimissung's poem WORKS so well... So by a short head... qimissung is the winner!

Now I'm going to go hide.

qimissung
06-30-2009, 06:18 PM
Thank You, alexar. And my congratulations to alakungfu, Rabid Reader, Silven, Pendragon, and Aunt Shecky. I really enjoy pitting myself against myself, and I love writing with you all and I love seeing what everyone else comes up with. No lack of imagination in this group.

And, alexar, I understand well the feeling of going to hide! :lol:

Now, on to the next challenge. The subject is "...the letter in his pocket."

Good luck, have fun, be brilliant. The contest will close July 24, at 8 p.m.

rabid reader
07-09-2009, 11:50 AM
From Me with love

Speak with me, don’t forget my son,
The words which hold my thoughts as a locket.
Don’t bend, and don’t fold, or crease
This letter that’s in your pocket.

For the love that I tell you,
Cannot be fond in some general thought
It is I your bearer to you my son,
Which is love that cannot be sought.

So please remain well, and brush your hair.
Remove the dust and crumbs from it.
If your lonely and need some care,
Look upon the letter that’s in your pocket.

qimissung
07-09-2009, 08:47 PM
Thank you rabid reader! I was beginning to despair of any entries. Yours is a fine one. Love the second line..."The words which hold my thoughts as a locket."

Haunted
07-09-2009, 11:07 PM
there is this letter
that wanted to belong
to someone

one day he came along
and accepted it

if a letter could feel
it was happy and safe
in his blue jean pocket
warmed by his hand

but who would wear
the same jeans forever?

They were left behind
on the closet floor
when he moved on

still in the pocket
now long forgotten
is the letter...

this little
letter...

i

Sapphire
07-10-2009, 09:09 AM
Here is my little contribution. I guess it shows that I have been focussing on lyrics a bit too much lately :lol:

The mailman came today

The door opened, the door closed
he came in - but still alone
His eyes show secret memories
but he does not speak to me

_____________There's a letter in his pocket

I dipped a pencil
into a well of many words
Careless, but no whispers [**]
only silence to be heard

_____________There's a letter in his pocket

I am inscensed; I bottle up my fears
and throw them in the ocean
Let them never reach the shore
All these fake emotions

_____________There's a letter in his pocket
_____________and it is not mine to read


I wait for Monday [***]
to wash it all away

[]
* Robert Plant and Allison Krauss - Please read this letter
** George Michael - Careless whisper
*** the Scaffolds - Today's Monday

I can't figure out how to "outline" with just spaces so I used _____ to get it right. And I added as references - I am not sure whether it is necessary but sometimes it is nice to know where an idea comes from. :)

qimissung
07-10-2009, 08:01 PM
Haunted and Sapphire, your poems are by turns beautiful, clever, moving! Thank you so much for participating.

The Comedian
07-13-2009, 10:52 PM
Here's my submission!

Ode to Trash, Which Might Mean Something If We Knew the Story of How It Got There

Potent, acrid, & grimy --
the thing smelt like gasoline
and dirt

rubbed together
like a hippie worry bead
wrinkled

probably torn & soft as tissue
paper even by then
despite

his hands, which could not help
but paw the letter in his
pocket

Who knows what it said?
I sure don't. The ink was rubbed off when I
found it.

But I could still smell his workman's hands
when I brought it to my nose
and down

again to the jimson weeds that grew
by the shed where he worked
at night.

Nick Capozzoli
07-14-2009, 02:35 AM
Dead Letter

We found him in the woods not far from where
Main Street became Route 7 leaving town
From the South. He wandered in about a 100 yards
Along the path that led to Miller's Creek. Before
He reached the Millhouse he had found a tree,
A chestnut, giving August shade and close
Enough for him to hear the water's minor turbulence.
The 12 guage blast must have rung
For some time, before the water could be heard
Again by anyone else in the vicinity.

When we found him it was quiet enough
To hear the nearby creek from where he sat
Back against the treetrunk, the top half
Of his head was gone, hidden by a buzzing
Gauze of flies. In the right breast pocket of his shirt
We found a note.

qimissung
07-14-2009, 06:13 PM
Comedian and Nick, I am quiet, thoughtful...stunned really, with a chill still rolling up my spine. Thank you.

Free Falcon
07-15-2009, 01:52 PM
It was the last breath
before he left

his soul flew
on wings of a white angel
his body was lying
on the dusty bed

something briliant in his eyes
seemed to be
stronger than the death
something ambiguous
but fascinating
exactly like his speechless smile
the last one
which has been drawn
on his dead face

a letter in his pocket
was written since many years..
a throne peace of pink paper
and lines of pale ink
told me all the secrets
of the smily eyes
through the darkness of death
enlighted by a hope
to meet his love
which he has lost oneday
May be..in an other world
in an other life

March Hare
07-16-2009, 02:26 PM
A letter
Stuffed carelessly into his coat
Along with the day's other mail
A letter hoped for but not expected
In it a final chance
In it a choice revealed
Like an obscured path spied through dust and dusk
Nearly passed by
In it things unknown made known

That letter in his pocket
By twist of fate
Fell
Unread
Into the street

qimissung
07-16-2009, 03:21 PM
Free Falcon and March Hare, wowzers!!!! Touching...then stunningly ironic. Thank you!

alakungfu
07-16-2009, 04:01 PM
To last overnight
and over the conscience
leading back to Hermes' closet
in a predominant knot of woven plusses and rugged ruses,
trying to answer
the letter in my breast pocket
with a sufficiently glib
evil phone call dictated from a point
elucidated from somewhere deep in Pandora's trunk
in the core of Elysium's
virtual treasure map
buried in the philosophical directory listings
of pain referenced to revenge.

qimissung
07-17-2009, 04:03 PM
I feel like I've been on a journey deep in the heartland of a mythical land. Thank you, alakungfu, for taking me from one end of this country to another!

Pendragon
07-20-2009, 11:03 AM
Reread Letter

There's a letter in his pocket,
old and wrinkled, touched by time,
the letter from his sweetheart that he found
on the tree where they were to meet:
"I'll be there. Just wait on me. I love you so much."
Now he stands at her grave,
for she went on before him,
and the words have new meaning
and fill him with the hope
that they shall meet again...

Pendragon

qimissung
07-20-2009, 05:50 PM
There is so much tender feeling invested in these few words. Thank you, Pendragon.

Indy
07-22-2009, 07:14 PM
Ablation

It was easier than she'd thought;
Just one knock at the door,
And a man standing patiently there.
The letter in his pocket telling her all she could bear to hear.

Not even a word needed to be spoken,
She already knew what it was;
Just another drop of pain in the storm that had engulfed the town;
These icy letters falling hard on soft quivering hearts.

But this particular hailstone still knocked her off her feet,
She couldn't even cry,
Just softly murmur a groan.

George wasn't coming home.

qimissung
07-24-2009, 01:53 AM
I had an idea, Indy, where you were going with this, but it still took my breath away.

Only one day left. The contest ends tonight at 8 p.m. I would like to thank everyone who entered, and for your fine, fine entries. It was more than I ever hoped for.

Indy
07-24-2009, 10:42 AM
Thank you; it was intentional , I thought the competition could benefit from something simple but -hopefully- poignant, the inevitablity of the ending hopefully bringing closer to mind the plight of the narrator waiting nervous at every knock knowing what it would bring and finding when it did happen even with all her prior preparation it was still as painful as she thought.

P.S And I am sure I speak with the voice of all the contributors when I say a hearty thank you to you for running this competition and judging it thus giving us something to focus our efforts and sharpen our abilities against.

qimissung
07-24-2009, 12:51 PM
Thank you, Indy.

Your poem is indeed poignant; I, myself, have had instances where I have had that same feeling.

qimissung
07-25-2009, 12:07 AM
This contest is now closed. My words to you upon initiating this go round were "Good luck, have fun, be brilliant." I hope you had fun, I know you were brilliant. I will have the results posted in just a few days. Thank you so much for your brilliant, beautiful entries.

qimissung
07-27-2009, 01:21 AM
And the winner of this Subject Poetry Contest is:

Nick Capozzoli




Rabid Reader:

Yours was a tender missive of father to son filled with loving advice which ended:

So please remain well, and brush your hair.
Remove the dust and crumbs from it.
If your lonely and need some care,
Look upon the letter that’s in your pocket.


Haunted:

Yours had a surprise ending, a play on words, which you invested with a wealth of meaning; I thought perhaps it was about a broken love affair.

still in the pocket
now long forgotten
is the letter...

this little
letter...

i


Sapphire:

You used a number of allusions to current songs to good effect. I liked the idea of the letter as a message in a bottle.

I am inscensed; I bottle up my fears
and throw them in the ocean
Let them never reach the shore
All these fake emotions

Comedian:

You use language well, painting a vivid picture of a discarded letter, giving importance to that which is unimportant.

Potent, acrid, & grimy --
the thing smelt like gasoline
and dirt

rubbed together
like a hippie worry bead
wrinkled

Free Falcon:
A tender paean to a long lost love which made my sentimental heart ache to read it.

a letter in his pocket
was written since many years..
a throne peace of pink paper
and lines of pale ink
told me all the secrets

March Hare:
This one was rough to read, man. Note the twist at the end in the full version.

In it a final chance
In it a choice revealed
Like an obscured path spied through dust and dusk
Nearly passed by
In it things unknown made known

Alakungfu:
So literate, so many twists and turns, you use language like Arachne. I like your use of mythology!

trying to answer
the letter in my breast pocket
with a sufficiently glib
evil phone call dictated from a point
elucidated from somewhere deep in Pandora's trunk
in the core of Elysium's
virtual treasure map


Pendragon:
A letter from his deceased sweetheart, which gives new meaning and hope.

the letter from his sweetheart that he found
on the tree where they were to meet:
"I'll be there. Just wait on me. I love you so much."
Now he stands at her grave,
for she went on before him,
and the words have new meaning

Indy:
This one knocked me off my feet, the letter every mother dreads getting.

But this particular hailstone still knocked her off her feet,
She couldn't even cry,
Just softly murmur a groan.

George wasn't coming home.


Nick Cappozoli:
Between Nick, alakungfu, March Hare and Comedian, I was a little torn (no pun intended), but the solemn force of his words and the masterful way he handled the subject makes this one the clear winner. Thank you all, thank you Nick.


Dead Letter

We found him in the woods not far from where
Main Street became Route 7 leaving town
From the South. He wandered in about a 100 yards
Along the path that led to Miller's Creek. Before
He reached the Millhouse he had found a tree,
A chestnut, giving August shade and close
Enough for him to hear the water's minor turbulence.
The 12 guage blast must have rung
For some time, before the water could be heard
Again by anyone else in the vicinity.

When we found him it was quiet enough
To hear the nearby creek from where he sat
Back against the treetrunk, the top half
Of his head was gone, hidden by a buzzing
Gauze of flies. In the right breast pocket of his shirt
We found a note.


Nick, you will choose the next subject.

Appreciatively Yours,
Qimissung

March Hare
07-27-2009, 12:30 PM
Congrats, Nick. Well done.

And well done to you qimissung. A fair and industrious judge.

Nick Capozzoli
07-27-2009, 10:35 PM
Well, thanks very much. I'm honored.

So I guess I get to propose a new subject.:redface:

How about a first line, with an image to be expanded? I wrote a poem some years ago with this as the first line, but I'm curious to see where it could go.
...

"After the first one, killing them was easy"

Nick

The Comedian
07-29-2009, 01:26 PM
Congrats Nick! :D

alakungfu
08-06-2009, 10:58 AM
Congrats, Nick. Here is my poem:


The Road Less Flawed

He saved his wife the sordid shock
After his destiny did him mock
And vampire lust possessed his soul
One sultry night that did ill knock.

Dierdre did her beloved toll
All his time spent on the knoll
And warned him he would be her death
If danger rested as his dole.

When he found her and kissed her breath
His temper rose and raised the heath
Within his unnatural melodrama
And turned his head to the bloody beneath.

He missed his turn to pose Dierdre harm
And considered his rose that was yet warm
Turned to scented stone and gristle
And knowingly let go her arm.

He fled through the threshold back to the thistle
A fiend of the moonstream and stretch of the whistle
And agonized as he studied a stamen and pistil
He would gain her, would embrace the ravenstoke missal.

Nick Capozzoli
08-09-2009, 10:03 PM
Congrats, Nick. Here is my poem:


The Road Less Flawed

He saved his wife the sordid shock
After his destiny did him mock
And vampire lust possessed his soul
One sultry night that did ill knock.

Dierdre did her beloved toll
All his time spent on the knoll
And warned him he would be her death
If danger rested as his dole.

When he found her and kissed her breath
His temper rose and raised the heath
Within his unnatural melodrama
And turned his head to the bloody beneath.

He missed his turn to pose Dierdre harm
And considered his rose that was yet warm
Turned to scented stone and gristle
And knowingly let go her arm.

He fled through the threshold back to the thistle
A fiend of the moonstream and stretch of the whistle
And agonized as he studied a stamen and pistil
He would gain her, would embrace the ravenstoke missal.

alakungfu,

Well, that is an interesting poem, but it doesn't seem
to take off on the phrase I suggested, i.e. "After the
first one, killing them was easy." I was hoping that someone
would be able to incorporate that phrase into a poem. I'll give
a couple of weeks for Lit-Forum members to submit to this
"contest."

Nick

PoemsEulogy
08-10-2009, 06:54 PM
Bloodtrails fade fast in the rain
And it helps the flesh to decay.

These are tricks you learn as you go
Which every time are only more important

After the first one, killing was easy
But always getting harder to hide

Nick Capozzoli
08-10-2009, 11:29 PM
Bloodtrails fade fast in the rain
And it helps the flesh to decay.

These are tricks you learn as you go
Which every time are only more important

After the first one, killing was easy
But always getting harder to hide

PE,

Interesting and creepy (serial-killer-like) take-off on the suggested phrase.:eek:

Nick

March Hare
08-11-2009, 01:46 PM
Well, PoemsEulogy stole my psychopathic thunder but here goes...
---------------------------------------------------------------

After the first one killing them was easy
Before you know you're kinda
S***ting your pants
And thinking
Thinking
Get the hell outta here
Go home go anywhere

I took some deep breaths to calm down
Went in
Closed the door
And aimed

Pop pop pop

She fell like a brick
I looked at her
I knew her
I knew her pretty good
Since like third grade

Oh f*** I whispered
And man I was shaking
Maybe crying
Crying and thinking
Is this it is this what's gonna happen
Can I get out of this situation
And then laughing
To myself
At myself
Situation that's a good way to put it
And the laughing froze my blood

My blood froze
And I aimed again

The Comedian
08-11-2009, 09:14 PM
Here's my entry!

After the first one, killing them was easy

It took ten days to axe them -- limbs and all
It took nine to split them to the grain
And eight to clear the uneven ground
Seven to build the the level rows
And six to stack them up
Five to cover them
And four to pray
Three days 'till
Winter's
Here

Nick Capozzoli
08-12-2009, 12:06 AM
Keep 'em coming! We're getting somewhere...even if it ain't very pretty...I mean can't we imagine putting the phrase in a poem with a non-psychopathic
point of view? :( I'll give it another week or so.

Nick

Pendragon
08-12-2009, 04:05 PM
Bloody Hells

After the first one, killing them was easy—
Millions liquidated for a Madman’s eternal dream…
The blood still cries out from the ground,
From these Gates to Hell on Earth:
Auschwitz-Birkenau, Belzec, Chelmno, Majdanek, Sobibor, and Treblinka.
It would look like mankind would finally have learned,
But new places for mass-slaughter arise like a bloody sun,
Cambodia, Dafur, Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Rwanda…
The stifling cry of copper-tasting blood still echoes from the ground,
And who among is there to answer that silent scream…

© Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Pendragon

LMK
08-12-2009, 11:10 PM
After the First One, Killing Them was Easy
by LMK

After the first one, killing them was easy
One by one their heads fell
I watched the first, disbelieving
But soon a flash of ecstasy shot through me
And after it a release I had never imagined

I carried on in frenzied, passion, a burning fury to kill them
Everything was covered in red, there was so much red
The younger ones had little to give up,
Just tiny buds, barely life even begun
But, the older ones with little blush left on their bloom were my favorite

Sharpened blades made all the difference
Why did I wait so long to do this?
Such liberation, to be rid of them all
Oh, that I could escape from them, I often dreamed
Their dying, turning to dust, blowing away in the wind, left to be nothing

It was a satisfaction I never expected to fulfill
For how long did I pretended to love them
While hatred and resentment grew in my heart
I waited, biding my time, not forming any plan
Patience rewarded me with such exhilaration I never conceived

I still can’t believe that he planted red roses
He knew I had asked for lilac bushes
I spoke often enough of how they would perfume the air
With spring’s gentle breezes; the fragrance of my youth.
He understood, he knew, he did it to mock me; “a love that will bloom forever,” he said

“Mother’s won another ribbon,” he’d gloat over her prize roses
For five years, I fawned and pruned, cut and trimmed
Keeping their blossoms full and their stalks trained while he recounted her latest win.
Well, no more, the last bud, flower, stem and root
Composted, leaving only a small track of petals I’d tired of picking up, as if a trail of blood

Yes, after the first one, killing them was easy.

Let him grow roses and compete with his mother if he wants,
I'm ordering lilac bushes!
/*
~L

Nick Capozzoli
08-13-2009, 12:08 AM
PenD and LMK,

Wow! Great stuff! I really like this new turn. I think that LMK is the one to beat, so keep it up Lit Netters. We'll give this part of the contest another
week. :)

Nick

qimissung
08-13-2009, 09:56 AM
Wow, these are AWESOME, each and every one!

Nick Capozzoli
08-20-2009, 01:26 AM
I guess there has been enough time for submissions. I've never had to judge a poetry contest before this, and I don't feel cabable of judging this one.

I can submit the poem I wrote with the line ti use as a take off, "after the first one killing them was easy..." Here it is.

Cowslaughter

After the first one, killing them was easy
As learning to place the shot well
Back of the ear, the others waiting
Behind a door ready to kick the bar out
When she would fall against it, as if
Suddenly realizing her own weight.

Cutting was the most difficult. To break
The skin it seemed you’d need a hammer
To pound the knife in, your hands working
Behind a curtain of flesh, probing
For the right vein. The blade
Came always on the same things:
The white wall of sinew, loose flesh,
Then scraping along the windpipe where
You 'd find it,
The quick release of blood.

You don’t think of that, only knives moving
Rapidly, the skin falling to the floor
In folds, like a tarpaulin. Better now,
That it looks like work: a groundcloth
To catch the mess, a winch lifting
The carcass by hind legstumps, a grainsack
You cut open. Spilling what was inside
You gather it back to its own skin, hauling it
To the dump in a pickup truck.

Hours later when you return.
The shed is empty, filled with breeze;
The hollow carcass hung in halves:
No blood now, all washed away
Or receded into the horny flesh.
Whatever had been on the air is gone.
The cattle and horses no longer edgy
Fall back to gnawing the bales of hay
You toss to them. Only you,
Who smelled nothing at the time,
Recall many years afterward
The smell this blood left on your hands.


Someone else, maybe Q-Sung, shoud judge this
competition.



Nick

qimissung
08-20-2009, 01:16 PM
Yours is quite beautiful and powerful, also, Nick.

I would like to help, but this is your party! :)

PoemsEulogy
08-20-2009, 03:48 PM
PE,

Interesting and creepy (serial-killer-like) take-off on the suggested phrase.:eek:

Nick

Thanks

Nick Capozzoli
08-21-2009, 12:58 AM
I would like to help, but this is your party! :)

OK. I guess this challenge has been out there for a while, but I'll set a date to end it: August 23, at 2000 hours (Pacific Time). Keep 'em coming!

Nick

Nick Capozzoli
08-24-2009, 04:01 PM
Thanks to alakungfu, Poems Eulogy, March Hare, The Comedian, Pendragon, and LMK for their excellent submissions!
It was hard to select a "winner," as all of your entries were strong, with powerful images.

I guess that I should have expected the take-off phrase, After the first one, killing them was easy would prompt a poetic exploration into the mind of a psychopathic killer (either an individual or, as in Pendragon's excellent Bloody Hells, a collectivist State bent on murder).

But I had to select a "winner, and here it is (DRUMROLL):

LMK


After the First One, Killing Them was Easy
by LMK

After the first one, killing them was easy
One by one their heads fell
I watched the first, disbelieving
But soon a flash of ecstasy shot through me
And after it a release I had never imagined

I carried on in frenzied, passion, a burning fury to kill them
Everything was covered in red, there was so much red
The younger ones had little to give up,
Just tiny buds, barely life even begun
But, the older ones with little blush left on their bloom were my favorite

Sharpened blades made all the difference
Why did I wait so long to do this?
Such liberation, to be rid of them all
Oh, that I could escape from them, I often dreamed
Their dying, turning to dust, blowing away in the wind, left to be nothing

It was a satisfaction I never expected to fulfill
For how long did I pretended to love them
While hatred and resentment grew in my heart
I waited, biding my time, not forming any plan
Patience rewarded me with such exhilaration I never conceived

I still can’t believe that he planted red roses
He knew I had asked for lilac bushes
I spoke often enough of how they would perfume the air
With spring’s gentle breezes; the fragrance of my youth.
He understood, he knew, he did it to mock me; “a love that will bloom forever,” he said

“Mother’s won another ribbon,” he’d gloat over her prize roses
For five years, I fawned and pruned, cut and trimmed
Keeping their blossoms full and their stalks trained while he recounted her latest win.
Well, no more, the last bud, flower, stem and root
Composted, leaving only a small track of petals I’d tired of picking up, as if a trail of blood

Yes, after the first one, killing them was easy.

Let him grow roses and compete with his mother if he wants,
I'm ordering lilac bushes!
/*
~L

LMK, as the winner, it is now up to you to chose a topic and judge the entries. Good Luck and Godspeed,

Nick

NickAdams
08-24-2009, 04:26 PM
This is reminiscent of the third inter-chapter in Hemingway's short story collection In Our Time:

"We waited till he got one leg over and then potted him. He had so much equipment on and looked awfully surprised and fell down into the garden. Then three more came over further down the wall. We shot them. They all came just like that."

What a great take off phrase; wish I would have came upon it sooner.

LMK
08-25-2009, 01:56 AM
Thanks Nick!

OK, how about something a little different, and random perhaps?

The subject is hope, and the words, "...red button..." should appear somewhere in the piece.

If there is enough response (at least 3), by September 15, then that will be the last day of posting entries. If there is not enough response by then, I'll give it to September 30.

Hope you enjoy,
~L

Pendragon
08-26-2009, 12:18 PM
Panic Button

Panic is a slimy thing
Curled like the Midgard Serpent
Enchaining the human heart
Keep all thoughts on-line
For hitting its bright red button...

Hope is that feathered thing,
Perched precariously upon
A bust of Pallas deep within the soul
That keeps our frenzied minds and hands
From pressing that red button...

Pendragon
© Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Sapphire
08-26-2009, 12:46 PM
I don't think it is random ;)

Which one?

Do you see them?
___________2 round buttons
___________yours to push

Which will you press?
___________the red button
___________or the green

It is sure that one
___________will bring disaster
___________the other salvation

You decide which
___________be colourblind
___________it is all up to you

Press none
___________and all you'll have
___________is hope

PoemsEulogy
09-04-2009, 10:47 PM
My red button down shirt
Is my now-shirt
For the now-place
That's fine for right now.

The bright yellow lights
Are the tomorrow-lights
That I can't see past.

alakungfu
09-12-2009, 02:34 PM
The song let loose
The last troubadour stood down
Sidestepped the noose
And denied what he'd known

An epic life no longer his
He looked to the sky to lead him forth
After shedding ritual guise
And embraced again the Star of the North

He undid each red button of his dwindling breeches,
Slung on a new belt to fit his new tunic
Pulled on some larger pants, disappearing into the beeches
As the knave took off into the rustic

What had been of the buccaneers
Hung in the chorus of his song in the trees
To be tried by peers and seers
With a cryptic map of creaks and leas

The captain of yore, abandoned in part,
But left, in his words, to the judgment imparted
A random message and a new start
An extension of the course first charted

balehead
09-26-2009, 03:32 AM
Is this one still open??

Pendragon
09-26-2009, 06:46 AM
Is this one still open??

I haven't seen notice of "contest closed" so I would say, yeah, it's still open...

LMK
09-28-2009, 11:51 AM
Sorry all, I've been living in hotels and airports for the last few weeks, so lets keep this going until the end of the month.

Thanks so much to all who have entered so far!

LMK

LMK
10-06-2009, 06:45 AM
The Hope/Red Button subject contest is closed.

Thanks for all who participated, the winner will be announced shortly.

Thanks for all who participated...FABulous work all!

LMK

LMK
10-07-2009, 12:10 PM
Thanks to Pendragon, Sapphire, PoemsEulogy, Alakungfu for your submissions.

The concept for a poem about hope that included the words “red button” came from some lines that popped into my head when considering various subjects and topics for this contest. I have yet to write the poem, but the lines are roughly the following:

“All I have left is hope.
To see the shiny red buttons on her favorite sweater
To feel her gentle touch stroking my hair
To hear her softly whisper that everything’s going to be ok
To hope….”Pendragon I enjoyed the metaphoric imagery of slimy panic and feathery hope.

Sapphire what a fun structural form!

PoemsEulogy, you nicely captured the essence of a less-is-more moment for me.

Alakunfu, you were able to conjure some great emotional imagery.

Thank you all, it was fun reading and re-read the entries. While all complied with mentioning the the words "red button" and included an element of hope, the piece that included the words and seemed to be about hope (if I am reading it correctly) was Alakunfu’s, “By Order of a Buccaneer.”

Congratulations Alakungfu!

alakungfu
10-08-2009, 12:31 PM
Thank you, LMK. I confess, that was a bit of a surprise.

The next subject is going to be "mixed feelings" and the poem has to include the phrase "tortured soul".

The contest deadline will be October 31

~Sophia~
10-08-2009, 04:32 PM
Skinned Alive

You say you want to know me? I suppose you can
try looking into my eyes and if they are not cloudy,
you may see the tortured soul you’re looking for.

You might even engage a mettle detector to count
the ticks but it often races and it sometimes skips.
At best you’ll be listening to a faulty metronome.

If you really want to know me, examine the skin.
This stretched, limed and living parchment with
a thousand nerve endings to the inch.

That’s where you’ll find the indelible fingerprint
of everyone who’s ever touched me. And, yes,
I’ve got a few scars but there is a hell of a story

behind each one. Bruising? Of course. I call that
my black and blue collection. More wrinkles than
I’d like - that’s life. Feel free to add up the laugh

lines I want to multiply by a hundred fold. Those
freckled places the sun seldom sees? I’ve been
told they’re kisses from God. Deviant perhaps -

but who can stop God? Then, after you’ve x-rayed
each subtle essential layer, goosebump, dimple,
dip and irregularity.... you’ll know.

alakungfu
10-08-2009, 05:53 PM
Beautiful poem, Sophia -- introspective but not unnecessarily critical. This contest is off to a good start.

Dark Muse
10-09-2009, 12:28 AM
Between Sunrise & Sunset

Upon the crossroads
between shadow and light
a tortured soul
stands half in night
and half in day.

Before his eyes
swings the pendulum
of virtue and vice,
feeling trepidation
stir within his blood.

A road weary traveler
tempted to lie to rest
in the devil's embrace
but in his ear calls a voice
to walk into the rising sun.

Neither sinner nor saint
there comes the moment to choose,
dust upon the brow,
steeped in days long sweat,
the question hovers
to turn east or west.

One lone soul
stranded in the middle
his heart pulled
two different ways.

The path that offers ease
at the end of his labors,
but at what eternal cost,
while the other road
means more work to come
but for what reward?

Pendragon
10-09-2009, 08:26 AM
Mixed Feelings

Do I keep moving along the rugged pathway
Hoping to meet new beginnings at its end—
Do I search for light and brighter days,
Or just contemplate whatever life sends…
I’m just a tortured soul in need of solace
I wonder: do I give up or just give in…
Heartaches unnumbered, so out of place—
Do I continue walking or return to where I began—
Would starting over really be that bad
Even though my race is approaching the line—
Is it worth my while, or will it just make me sad,
To trade the night’s comfort for blessed sunshine…
I have had a close call, near as I can figure:
But sometimes my tortured soul wishes I had pulled that trigger…

Pendragon
© Friday, October 09, 2009

alakungfu
10-09-2009, 11:11 AM
Thank you, Dark Muse, I loved how you paced your poem. And Pendragon, you painted an impressive picture with your poem. Thank you for your submissions. I hope this contest gets a good draw. It will by the look of things.

AuntShecky
10-13-2009, 05:30 PM
Mixed Emotions

Long ago one could find
a cut called “Mixed Emotions”
on an album by McKenna.
Which was better – the class
of jazzy notes Dave transcribed,-- or
his own piano style
rich with stride and sass?
Though years later my mind
can still hum it well,
I can't tell.

Filling a page may lighten
life’s ever-plodding load,
as a free spirit shedding care
while strolling up an off-beat road.
Sometimes unsolicited stigmata
from a deep psychic vein may swell.
Which is better,-- or
is neither worth the time and fare?
I can't tell.

On rare occasions the arty scam
pipes up and starts to sing:
“This could be it, maybe the real thing.”
Then again, it might all be a mere sham.
I'm the proverbial tortured soul, –- or
just a comedian, quirky as hell.
I can't tell.

alakungfu
10-14-2009, 09:10 AM
Wow, Aunt Shecky, you really marry the poem to the chosen topic, well done. And nice choice of form, as well.

qimissung
10-14-2009, 09:06 PM
The doe came stealthily,
from the great lonely,
to the salt lick,
white all around
and she graceful in it.
Morning stirred around her
and she raised her eyes
to peer into mankind,
seeking,
ame torturee pauvre,
something.
Then,
without another glance
at abandoned civilization,
she leaped once more
into the
dragon’s teeth.

Qimissung

alakungfu
10-15-2009, 01:53 PM
Lovely metaphor, qimissung, just like they used to write in days of olde. Dante and Chaucer couldn't have done better. Thank you for your poem.

alakungfu
10-28-2009, 02:05 PM
Beautiful poems so far. And only four days left.

alakungfu
11-02-2009, 10:17 AM
First of all, I must commend you all on your superb poetry. I especially like a poem that thinks itself through and out, answers its own questions so to speak. So, I have selected "Between Sunrise and Sunset" by Dark Muse.

qimissung
11-02-2009, 12:05 PM
Congratulations, Dark Muse. I kind of like yours because it leaves me with more questions than I started out with!

As you said, alakungfu, everyone did a superb job. Well, it was an interesting subject!

Dark Muse
11-04-2009, 03:41 AM
Oh wow! I had no idea I won.

Thank You!

This came as a complete surprise to me

Dark Muse
11-06-2009, 01:05 AM
Ok, the next subject is Alter Ego and poem should include the phrase "hidden truth"

Deadline December 3rd

Pendragon
11-09-2009, 09:22 AM
Nice going, Muse!

Pendragon
11-09-2009, 09:37 AM
Masks and Dreams

Searching the mirror where hidden truths lie,
The Alter Ego that prays to escape—
Which one with I become when the Night presses on,
For all are just fragments of me...
Faces float in the depths of my mind
A kaleidoscope of personalities, each just a part of the whole—
Masks to be put on or taken off as the mood takes me...
They call it “mental illness” but what it really is
Is the Alter Egos just struggling for air time
On the TV station that I call life,
The babbling voices that beckon and entice,
Blank visages awaiting the paint to give them uniqueness:
Jonathan Blade, Raven Darkendale, David Pendragon and more—
Who will I be in the end—
What name do I inscribe on my stone—
When my life has been one of charades?

Pendragon
© 11/9/2009

http://image.orientaltrading.com/otcimg/25_1185.jpg

Dark Muse
11-09-2009, 12:31 PM
Nice going, Muse!

Thank you, and great poem, it has kind of an eerie quality to it.

alakungfu
11-09-2009, 05:01 PM
Shards of bevelled mirror
Shades of crooked canvas
Shreds of iced fabric
Diced to innovative imperfection
Enticed to leading inhibitions
An extemporaneous
Colloquial collage
Merging twill with teetering type
Trite with smoldering smut
Wrecked with onerous billowing
Tacit with blessedly believable
And what do you have?
Nostalgia
That is, someone's hidden truth
Or, better yet,
Just a trick of isolation
Put together for aesthetic sake
With Alice's sense
In a brief world
All too certain.

Dark Muse
11-09-2009, 05:05 PM
Oh wow! That was fantastic

Dark Muse
11-17-2009, 01:12 PM
It is near the middle of the month and only 2 entires so far, before you know it the deadline will be upon you.

Dark Muse
12-01-2009, 04:43 PM
Since the deadline is almost upon us and only two entries so far, to try and make more of a contast of this, I am going to extend the deadline as I know for many this is a busy time of year.

So the new deadline is January 15

Dark Muse
01-03-2010, 07:12 PM
*bump*

qimissung
01-06-2010, 12:59 AM
I want to be the girl
who loves her life best,
like my friend who has
a hundred friends
like a parcel of random gems
she is never without one

there was the guy she first slept with
after breaking up with a boyfriend
and who, after hanging out and
having sex with each other
for three months, bought her
a purple teddy bear with hearts
on its paws, but that wasn't who
she was
so she apologized and moved on

and the one she spent three years with
who she thought might be the one,
but two years later he wasn't

or the one she lived with for five years
she thought for awhile that she might like to
live in Paris
she never said whether he would join her
or not

in the end they can hang
around
if they want to
that's ok with her

but i am not a nomad
in matters of the heart
i live
i love my family
i write, i paint, i think
some days i save the world

but the hidden truth is that
i'm lillian gish
floating downstream on an ice floe

and all i really want is for
someone to care enough
to stay with me til i die

Qimissung

Dark Muse
01-16-2010, 10:41 PM
Thank you to those who have entered, though it makes it even harder to judge, with so few to choose from, as all three entires were quite good, but alas there can be only one winner.

Pendragon: I loved your use of the masks, I have a fasncation with masks myself and so I quite enjoyed that asepct of your poem. A great concept, with some wonderful lines and paints a rather vivid scene with your imagery.

oqimissung: I really enjoyed your poem, I just loved the apporach you took. I thought the concept behind the poem was really great, and I loved the fact that it did have such a personal feeling to it.

But the winner goes to

alakunfu: Your poem was so richly and wonderfully original and the langauge you used was fabulous, it was a very expertly and brillinatly crafted poem and I most particuarly enjoyed your use of the resquted phrase "hidden truth"

qimissung
01-17-2010, 02:15 PM
Congratulations, alakungfu. The language you use is always rich.

Pendragon
01-22-2010, 10:16 AM
Congratulations, alakungfu. Very nice poem there!

qimissung
01-22-2010, 09:58 PM
Yours, too, Pendragon. :)

Pendragon
01-27-2010, 10:30 AM
BUMP! Next subject?:alien::alien::alien::alien::alien:

Pendragon
02-12-2010, 11:01 AM
Paging alakungfu! Next subject, please! Hello, anybody out there?

Pendragon
02-16-2010, 11:22 AM
As of today, I am reopening the subject poetry contest. I trust alafungfu is doing well, but she hasn't been here of late. My prayers go out to her.

The next subject is "Werewolves", and should contain the line "by the lemon twilight of the pale full moon"

Best of luck to everybody, deadline on March 5th.

pendragon

Dark Muse
02-16-2010, 10:32 PM
Reckoning

By the lemon yellow twilight of the pale moon
rises the eerie song of a sorrowful serenade
shattering the stillness of the night, offered like
prayers to the shining stars with their ever watchful eyes,
but no wishes will be granted tonight.

Warmth evaporates quickly into deathly cold
of the sanguine stained earth, for the bitter offering
of life stolen on the head of the hunter's silver bolt,
while she dies within the arms of her alpha mate
his own heart torn from within his breast with her
last precious breath bestowed upon his face.

Upon this night a new vow is forged with
his eyes turning red from the growing rage
which eases away the pain, while his call tares
open the sky, from this point forever more he
pledges that the man within him may be
buried within her own grave.

And awaken the wolf to claim free reign
and shed the last remaining shackles of humanity
to spread the plague of death and terror
until vengeance at last be held within the jaws
that he may close his eyes for eternal sleep
by her side once the hunter's blood is bitter
sweet upon his tongue.

Liz J.
02-17-2010, 02:14 AM
A ROSE PETAL FALLS TO THE FLOOR


A rose petal falls to the floor.
Tiny lips pout, then giggle once more.

A rose petal drifts through the door.
“Can I grab the keys, Dad, and drive to the store?”

A rose petal’s tossed to the crowd.
Both parents cry, but still they are proud.

A rose petal blows far away.
Joy comes with visits, but never can stay.

A rose petal falls in the grass.
Unnoticed, a lifetime flies past.

A rose petal’s placed on a stand
While time strokes a shriveled old hand.

A rose petal's dropped in a grave.
Another pressed flat in a good book to save.

A rose petal flutters and glides.
Baby tosses the old book aside.

A rose petal's stuffed in the mouth,
Mommy fishes the nasty thing out.

A rose petal falls to the floor.
That’s what the dustpan is for.

Pendragon
02-23-2010, 09:07 AM
Come on Poets! Write, write, write! :grouphug:

The Comedian
02-25-2010, 11:22 PM
The Events of the Evening of February 25, 2010

She woke up last night and said,
"by the lemon twilight of the pale full moon"

I whispered "wha-?"
But her eyes locked shut and she was out.

The sky black and cloudy.
I remember thinking about coffee

When she woke and said,
"by the lemon twilight of the pale full moon"

Out again. I nudged her knee: Nothing.
"Christ" I muttered.
And I swear I heard a snort outside the window.
It was morning when we woke up again.

She said "I had this crazy dream
That I was outside our window
Looking in at you, and you cursed at me."

"Full moons" I say.

Pendragon
03-05-2010, 09:47 AM
Today is the close of the contest. We had a slightly disappointing contest, but que sera, sera.

LizJ: very beautiful and potentially winning poem. Unfortunately, you did not use the current subject. Keep up the wonderful writing, just double-check that you are one the current picture/subject/form etc. Best of luck to you.

The Comedian: A wonderful poem that leaves the reader to think beyond the words. Thank you.

Dark Muse: You have captured all of the requirements for the poem and written a work of epic proportions to boot! You may choose the next subject.

Thanks to all of you poets, without you, there would be no contests!

Pen

AuntShecky
03-05-2010, 12:22 PM
Congratulations, Dark Muse. Loved the use of "evaporate" in a whole new context, and the idea, though a bit disturbing, that humanity is "shackled. LizJ's "A Rose Petal Falls to the Floor" was the subject of a previous subject poem contest, methinks. And TheComedian -- your poem was witty as all get-out!

Most of all, THANK YOU, dear Pendragon, for keeping this contest going!

qimissung
03-05-2010, 01:22 PM
Sorry, Pendragon, I did want to write about this, but other things kept interfering with my thought processes.

Congratulations, Dark Muse. I liked these lines:

"pledges that the man within him may be
buried within her own grave."

I enjoyed yours a great deal, Comedian. Love those poems that allow our imaginations to work overtime!

Dark Muse
03-05-2010, 01:41 PM
Thank you! Of course I loved this subject!

I will have the next subject posted shortly.

The Comedian
03-05-2010, 01:50 PM
Congrats Dark Muse -- a big wolfish Howl to you!

Dark Muse
03-05-2010, 03:52 PM
Ok the next subject is the "muse" and the poem must contain the phrase "words fall like ruby red gems"

Deadline March 21st

Pendragon
03-06-2010, 10:02 AM
The Muse Arrives

When the Muse at last puts in her appearance,
Words fall like ruby red gems
A world of rich treasure overflowing in words
A song of life that enriches the reader

When the Muse at last puts in her appearance,
Words flow like raindrops from pen to paper
The Voice of Many Waters
A deluge of sweet sorrow and unsurpassed joy

When the Muse at last puts in her appearance,
Dawn breaks eternal on magnificent horizons
The Gleam of the Day Glow
Refreshing the heart and the soul

When the Muse at last puts in her appearance,
Everything is beauty…

Pendragon
© March 6, 2010

The Comedian
03-06-2010, 11:18 PM
Inspiration

We have this bag of beads;
They're glass and green and red.
My muse she spills them on her head
Like a giant pouch of Burpee seeds.

My muse is two not three,
And she'll tell you how it is:
"These beads are mine" she'll say, "not his."
And so I'll fain to leave her be.

She'll tell me that they're jewels.
She'll tell me that they're cats.
I'll "meow" and drink my cold Labatts
Because I know we're playin' fools.

"Words fall like ruby red gems"
I'll say to her in glee.
"These ruby red words are for me"
She'll reply, sweet as M&Ms.

I saw my muse at birth;
I saw my muse today;
You know the one of whom I say?
Then throw some beads for little Mirth! Hooray!

Dark Muse
03-06-2010, 11:20 PM
Thank you both for the early entries, they are both great!

qimissung
03-09-2010, 12:00 AM
The Gift

We sit across from one another
candle light flickering in the darkened room,
casting ghostly shadows
that waltz upon our faces
we gaze raptly at each other
across the expanse of snowy linen
forks poised demurely above the hungry food

With an almost unseen flick of an eyelid,
we begin the feast,
a bite of the tenderest chicken cooked in wine
asparagus damp still from the earth,
crisp and green with new spring
and fragrant potatoes redolent of childhood and life
a white sauce that glides joyously down my throat
and pale wine that glistens with a thousand stories

they light upon my tongue like a flock of noisy seagulls
on a winter day
and in a burst of trancendent magic
are transformed into words
that fall like ruby red gems

we gaze in astonishment, my muse and I
then, laughing like children, we fall upon them,
with ravenous delight

Qimissung

krymsonkyng
03-09-2010, 11:44 AM
The seven sing songs of swords and souls
Those bloody Greeks
And their poor chores
Whose words fall like ruby red gems
To be trod upon.
By Roman boot heels
The daughters of gods and mortal men
Trade divinity
For clarity
Before cast to the seven seas

blank|verse
03-09-2010, 04:32 PM
words fall

I write
words fall like ruby red gems…

then screw
it up and start again.

My mind
is blank as paper;

my blood
waits for its orders.

My heart
is open over, over

my love
is coming closer, closer.

My eyes
shut. Death black then indigo

lapis lazuli
wild orchid white and dark yellow

ochre.
I grab her hand and hold her tight.

She tells
me of her undreamt worlds and through the night

we disappear
where angels fear and heavens rage

and reappear
through atmospheres as from backstage.

We harmonize
the universe in perfect fifths

recite songs
from The Tempest, rewrite Ovid's myths.

We speak in rhyme,
dithrambics and in syzygies

and improvise
encomia for Mnemosyne.

Her sisters
kiss and laugh and feed me nectar sweet

and trace their names
across my skin and lick my sweat

and crown me
with Parnassus' golden laurel leaves

and whisper
endless promises and I believe.

My lover's
hand frees mine then beckons through the glow...

I fall
and plummet backwards to the space below.

My open
eyes see only page and pen.

My blood
dries and I am blank again.

Dark Muse
03-09-2010, 04:34 PM
Wow, this is already going to be a hard one to judge, great entries so far!

AuntShecky
03-09-2010, 04:55 PM
We Are Not Amused

My words were fakes. Though I earnestly fought,
no line I wrote would set an immortal jewel.
Divine inspiration’s a myth, I thought,
a childish tale, and twice as falsely cruel.

Then she swept down, all draped in silk, with hems
of stars. My ceiling shook to hear her speak.
Perhaps her words fell like ruby red gems,
but I wouldn't know, since I don't know Greek.

autolycus
03-11-2010, 11:29 AM
Somewhere in middle Burma
Where gorges cut the land
The corundum gods bled out
In lakes of ruby sand

The mighty rocks laid cover
Upon the ruby pools
To keep the god-red essence
Far from the hands of fools

Where riches hide in splendor
Man's heavy hands will go
And so it was with Mogok
Where ruby veinlets show

Gods demand a sacrifice
For every ruby found
And so the Burmese warlords
Gave tribute to the ground

I took a walk in Thailand
I bought a ruby ring
I dreamt that night of Mogok
Of endless tunnelling

Where passages are narrow
They send the miners deep
To harvest ruby darkness
Up from its stony sleep

My dream was one of children
Enchained in endless line
Chipping out each ruby
From filthy fractured mine

One turned to me in silence
Her words were blood-red tears
They fell like rubies falling
Upon my flaming ears

I came alone from Thailand
No ruby on my hand
But dreams at night still haunt me
Of distant grieving land

paradoxical
03-14-2010, 07:05 PM
St. John, Virgin Islands


holding hands under
a cobalt blue sky,
walking to our hotel room
on white sand, you smile
by an aquamarine sea

sitting in the wicker chair
I begin to write poetry,
like a new dream,
a warm tropical sun;
you have become my muse

you stretch out in bed,
reading a brochure
as I watch you from behind,
sea caves, you say
there are sea caves

we will go tomorrow,
I begin to write a story
as the sun goes down,
we point at distant stars
but you inspire me more

and I kiss you,
your lips like spun cotton
lying here with you,
voices rise like children,
words fall like ruby red gems

Dark Muse
03-21-2010, 01:57 PM
Thank you all for the great entries, this is going to be a hard one to judge. I will have the results up soon hopefully.

Dark Muse
03-21-2010, 07:21 PM
Trust me when I saw this was incridably difficult to judge. I am quite happy with the nuerious and all wonderful entries but alas I must find a way to choose one to win above the rest.

Pendragon: As always you have a beautiful way of words. You produced a beautiful image with your wonderful words, and I particularly enjoyed the way in which you took the given phrase and turned it into a sort of refrain with slight alterations each time.

qinissung: A wonderfully vivid poem which evoked all of the senses and really seemed to bring the words into life. I particularly loved the allusions to food within your poem and thought it was quite delightful and savory to read.

krymsonkyng : I loved the classical references in your poem, and this one was a close front runner to win. I thought the imagery was great and loved the descriptions you used. You packed quite a powerful punch in a few lines.

blanklverse: This was a remarkable poem, and another one which came quite close to winning. I applaud your ambitious use of language and quite apt considering the topic of this poem. You had some wonderful use of words in your poem. I also loved the concept of your poem.

AuntShecky: A delightful poem, I thought the first verse was particularly wonderful. I loved the imagery you captured with your poem. I also loved the self-criticism as a poet expressed in the first verse. That verse line "My words are fake" most particularly caught my attention and I thought it was a wonderful opening. The very last line also made me chuckle.

autolycus Your poem was skillfully written with some absolutely stunning verses. I loved the feeling that it captured, and this poem may well have won, but though the concept of the muse is a subjected of one and everyone interprets different within your poem I just could not quite see the inspiration and influence of the muse within the subject of your poem.

paradoxical : One of the things that really stuck out about your poem, was the fact that I really liked the way in which you choose a more mortal influence to be your muse within the poem. That was a creative take upon the topic and I think you approached it in a wonderful way and captured some lovely moments. It was a sweet, charming and tender poem.

But the winner for this contest is

~drum roll~

The Comedian Your poem stood out to me above the rest. For one thing, it had me in near hysterics all the way through. There was something that seemed so completely original and unique in your approach of the subject, and you had one of the most creative ways of inserting the required phrase. Your poem did produce the strongest reaction from me in reading and was delightful and skillfully done.

solem grace
03-21-2010, 07:59 PM
In moonlit dim, where shadows lie, soft white curtains, flow by and by. The summers wind caresses night, giving life to candlelight. And on the marble, in glass you see, the last of a rose that will ever be. The end of its beauty.

"Songs of the universe, And there I lie, Under stars of heaven," FINISH ME

qimissung
03-21-2010, 10:01 PM
An M&M for your muse, Comedian. Well done!

paradoxical
03-21-2010, 11:23 PM
Yes, well done! I'm just happy that my poem was even considered.

Pendragon
03-22-2010, 08:54 AM
Congrads on the win, The Comedian! :hurray::hurray::hurray:

blank|verse
03-22-2010, 10:13 AM
Well done, The Comedian.

And paradoxical

I'm just happy that my poem was even considered.
I shouldn't be so modest; personally I thought yours was better than Comedian's.

qimissung
03-22-2010, 10:15 AM
And I personally, thought yours was the best of all.

The Comedian
03-22-2010, 01:01 PM
Wow -- there were so many excellent poems written for this topic -- Dark Muse, you certainly had a challenging task. I'm humbled. When I wrote the poem, I hoped to demystify the idea a muse and offer that a muse could be playful, simple, and fun. I'll think of a subject and a line and post them in a day or two.

autolycus
03-23-2010, 09:29 AM
Congrats to The Comedian! :) May you have inspiration as you define the new round...

The Comedian
03-23-2010, 09:45 AM
Okay, I have the subject and line for next round of competition.

Subject: a shared meal

Line: "the steam rose and then dispersed"

BienvenuJDC
03-23-2010, 01:03 PM
The morning sun dawned clear and bright
The chill was in the air
'Nother day to endure the fight
Extinguishing despair
The yield was taken in the blight
Life seeming so unfair
No morsel in which to delight
No one to even share

The coffee brewing hot and bold
The morning paper served
Real butter melting from its mold
Wealth given undeserved
China, silver, and linens fold
Ham, bacon, meats preserved
Not by a beggar in the cold
These items were observed

Seen from the balcony -- the cursed
A mendicant in dregs
Then the steam rose and then dispersed
From his neck as he begs
Sores that festered long soon to burst
A stench like rotten eggs
Depravity shown at its worst
As he sat on his legs

Compassion streamed from bleeding heart
Love deeming to appear
The riches on the breakfast cart
A gift to be sincere
"Shall I to him a crumb impart?"
Said servant with a sneer
Gazing into a world apart
"Please bring him to eat here!"

aliengirl
03-24-2010, 03:17 PM
So sweet Bien! It touched the cords of my heart. Best of Luck!

AuntShecky
03-24-2010, 03:33 PM
Nice initial entry.
What's the deadline, Comedian Sir?

Dark Muse
03-24-2010, 11:21 PM
The Ritual of Morning

White snow covered the ground
in the chill mist of early morning,
seeming to dazzle under the touch
of the new born light of dawn.

Without there was no hush
of a stir, yet against the wisps
of blue and white sky, curling
through the fresh pine trees,
a tendril of black smoke rises.

Amid the stillness of solitude
an isolated cabin sat, and through
the soft yellow glow of its windows
a morning scene unfolds.

Spry lean limbs start to unfold
as the youth rises from the warmth
offered within his bed, casting off
blankets to brave the chilly air
as bare feet slap eagerly against the floor,
without hesitation.

With haste he dresses in
anticipation of this moment
the best part of the day,
padding, bare foot down the hall
to emerge within the small kitchen
his eyes turned upon the back of
the older man, and the one he looks
up to most.

Already the smell of coffee lingers
in the air as the steam rose
and then dispersed to carry the enticing
aroma that reassures as the lad
makes his way to the table to take
the place which will always be waiting.

His father always seems to know
when he arrives, no matter how hard the
boy tries to mask the noise of his step
and like clock work in perfect time turns
and lays out breakfast upon the table.

It is a daily ritual, which occurs without
fail, that the boy takes the mug of the
steaming hot black liquid and with practiced
care lifts it to his face and drinks
and like always, without fail his nose
crinkles up and he sits it aside.

"Not yet!" The father says with a twinkle
in his eyes as he smiled. "No, not yet," the
boy confirms with a trace mixture of both
disappointment and relief, it is the boys
belief that there lies within that strong drink
the secret key, and the day he too becomes
a drinker of coffee, he will enter the elusive
rite as manhood.

The Comedian
03-25-2010, 10:46 AM
Nice initial entry.
What's the deadline, Comedian Sir?

Hey Auntie! Thanks for reminding me. Let's give it a pinch more than two week from here. Due date April 12.

EDIT: excellent entries thus far, lady and gentleman.

AuntShecky
03-25-2010, 03:38 PM
Sunday “Din”ner

Commander Mom made official decree:
they all would dine genteelly, en famille.
The Blackberry’s banished from the place
for “Pleasant Conversation” face-to-face.
All afternoon she slaved (she'll have them know.)
“Again with the martyr bit, here we go!”
said Dad, demanding what all this grub cost.
On Sis, the homily that morn’s been lost,
with thoughts of holy loaves and fishes
now wiped away by gripes of dirty dishes.
The course first up was a querulous platter
which bit right back with rumor-fed chatter,
unpaid bills, chores, and studies left undone.
Yet Junior, well aware of the thirst for fun,
the unexpressed hunger for a good joke,
with his fork in his mouth pretended to choke
when Mom lifted off the casserole lid.
The laugh, an early dessert from the kid,
exploded like a burp or something worse,
as the steam rose and then dispersed.

Babyguile
03-25-2010, 06:05 PM
^ This poem is brilliant!

Pendragon
03-27-2010, 08:57 AM
Final Meal

They were all gathered around a trash can fire,
Sharing what little they could beg, borrow, or steal
The steam rose and then dispersed like a ghost
Who knew it would be their last meal?
Since many a scrap of food came from dumpsters and trash
There was death in that pot, although nobody knew
The hunger was upon them from such a long fast
They hurriedly ate just as fast as they could chew

They ate with gusto the little that they had--
The morning dawned upon still bodies seemingly in sleep
The Men of the Bowery now silent and gone
All sorrows past, no more shall they weep
Will they wake in a land where they will hunger no more
There in the beauty of heaven's fair shore...

Pendragon

paradoxical
03-31-2010, 05:08 PM
on our very first night
we ate cold pizza,
drank Mexican beer.
I can see you smiling,

arms around each other
in that little house
on St. Patrick Street.
"We will cook rice."

"We will make fried rice
tomorrow," you said.
I listened, had no idea,
just warm like morphine

or old books, memories,
a faded picture in my mind.
"I got it off the internet,"
you said, laughing

I see you the next day,
standing at the stove,
steaming white rice and
heating oil in a wok

and now I feel love
like I have never felt,
just us two, together.
you turned off the stove,

removing the lid,
you began to stir the rice
while the steam rose
and then dispersed,

floating up to heaven

Haunted
04-06-2010, 09:44 AM
What superb poetry from everyone! I’m so inspired.
I came up with something but it’s way below your level.
Hope you don't mind...here it is...






Hot Dish


1.

when our eyes
met for the first time
they locked like the
strongest deadbolt

we went to a movie
and left before
it was over


2.

hair flows down
your eyelids flutter
my hand......almost touching
instantly your lips part
you hungry...


3.

the appetizers were
slowly savored but
we almost couldn't wait...

with the main course
the steam rose
and then dispersed
into minute murmurs

it was the
longest dinner
ever


4.

you whisper:
will there be seconds...

I whisper:
what does your gut tell you...


5.

just as in an old movie
I wrote on a matchbook
then I left Room 1105
the door locked itself behind me

BienvenuJDC
04-06-2010, 09:50 AM
What superb poetry from everyone! I’m so inspired.
I came up with something but it’s way below your level.
Hope you don't mind...here it is...


Below the rest? ....I don't think so....you write with such passion!!!!!

Haunted
04-06-2010, 09:53 AM
Below the rest? ....I don't think so....you write with such passion!!!!!

thanks for your kind words!

The Comedian
04-12-2010, 12:41 PM
Today (April 12) is the due date for this installment of the Subject contest. If you have a poem in mind, please submit it ASAP. I'll do the judging tomorrow.

The Comedian
04-13-2010, 01:12 PM
I loved every submission here. And I don't say that out of common curtsy. The Judging was most difficult. But here goes:

Bien's "Breakfast in the Morning" is a beautiful poem of charity and civility centered around the contest subject: a shared meal. Bien's work addressed the idea of shared meal as something we should do out of a moral responsibility to humble and the hungry. I also enjoyed his incorporation of the required line about "steam" as coming off the mendicant's neck which evokes a profound image of chill and isolation.

Dark Muse's "The Ritual of Morning" was an excellent tragi-comedy with the most unexpected ending of the group. DM, I greatly enjoyed your build up to the momentous occasion of one's first morning cup of Joe (denied!) as rite of manhood and adulthood. Too true!

Pendragon's "Final Meal" offered a sad glimpse into the life of hunger and isolation. (If only the narrator of Bien's poem could have seen them, I wondered). I thought that the great strength of Pendragon's poem was its use of a playful rhythm to contrast the horror of the narration. This combination gave the horrible event an even greater horror of commonality. I felt that Pendragon also played on the grand idea of a Biblical "last supper" with this sad lot's "final meal".

Haunted's poem "Hot Dish" (Dear Lord are you from the Mid-west?) played on feelings of appetite and the ancient connections between the sensuality of eating and courtship. Each numbered bit of the poem was soaked in anticipation.

paradoxical's "Newlyweds" was an amazing poem. I loved the subtle parings of divergent cultures in the opening two stanzas: "pizza", "Mexican beer", "St. Patrick's Street", "rice" which perfectly parallel the idea of two different people learning the art of a shared life. The modern, free-verse stanza added a contemporary feel to the poem. And the simplicity of the scene somehow felt, accurate (lousy word, I know) to me.

But the winner is. . .
the sad sack herself: AuntShecky. There is no other way I can say it: "Sunday 'Din'ner" kicks ***. The iambic pentameter & rhymed couplets structure the traditional idea that the poor mom is going for with her meal (and how she structures the meal). But this structure contains bombastic blasts of chaos, tension, noise and distraction in both content and the aural qualities of this poem. "Sunday 'Din'ner" is funny as hell and sad as hell at the same time.

Hey Auntie! I'll clean up the kitchen; you pick the subject for the rest of us sad sacks. ;)

AuntShecky
04-13-2010, 01:59 PM
Aw, thank you very much, Comedian. I am honored and surprised. The quality of the entries this time was remarkable, with Bienvenu's clever, alternate rhyme scheme, DarkMuse's soft and comforting imagery, Pen's philosophical mixture of despair and hope, Paradoxical's refreshing wit, and Haunted's pithy lines which call to mind the work of A.R. Ammons (the poet who used adding machine paper to keep his lines short.) These were all gems, methinks.

So I have high hopes for the next round of this contest. I'm purposely not including a line to quote, as the topic will be more-or-less wide open, and that is:
change (either temporary or permanent) upon a specific placeand its effect upon a particular individual. (The change should not be merely seasonal.)

Length: 4 lines minimum, 36 lines max.
Any form, meter or free, rhymed or unrhymed.
Use contemporary language; colloquial diction okay, though not required.

You can post your entries anytime between right now and May 10. (Hope Pong II holds out that long!)

Thanks again!

Babyguile
04-13-2010, 04:00 PM
I'm interested in submitting for this contest but can I just clarify: do you mean on a particular place OR a particular person...or both?

Also, as I said earlier, I loved your poem and it deserved to win.

BienvenuJDC
04-13-2010, 04:12 PM
Great Job, AuntShecky!! I will be working on my entry directly....great subject too!!

qimissung
04-13-2010, 04:51 PM
Those were good entries. Well don everyone, and a special congratulations to you, AuntShecky. Yours was brilliant.

AuntShecky
04-14-2010, 02:07 PM
I'm interested in submitting for this contest but can I just clarify: do you mean on a particular place OR a particular person...or both?

Also, as I said earlier, I loved your poem and it deserved to win.

Hey, Dave, that very question kept me awake last night. I think I mean both -- a change upon a place and its effect upon an individual. In both cases we're looking for specifics.

Thanks for your kind words.

Pendragon
04-15-2010, 09:03 AM
After Twenty Years

We were just kids, barely sixteen,
And we were in love—
Or in lust, or whatever—
And we’d kiss and cuddle and giggle
And have a wonderful time.
We were often serious,
Playing grown-up to the fullest;
That “Perfect Couple.”
One year later, we had split up—
A hurt that I thought would never go away;
A betrayal of all that I called “Me.”
But I had a friend, a wonderful friend
Who became more than just a friend—
My lover, my wife, and the mother of my children.
Now I stand here shaking your hand at your Uncle’s wake.
As I stare into your eyes once more,
I am amazed at how much has changed—
After twenty years…

Pendragon

with a nod to O. Henry for the title

The Comedian
04-20-2010, 12:13 PM
Here's my submission:

Cleaning Up the Crap at #6

When I walked the path by Reservoir Six
In a business suit and Italian shoes
Each morning before work and during lunch,
I thought "there are so many ways to lose".

A new career, a new wife, a new walk
Five ties, two blazers (blue), one ham sandwich -
And this same piece of litter on the path,
I thought "what a thoughtless son of a *****!"

A few months pass with this endless sad schtick:
Same steps, same sandwich, same ugly litter.
Drunk on depression I picked up a butt,
And thought "I'm sick of being a quitter".

After that I picked up all sorts of junk:
Torn bags, old soles, spent fags, pop cans and glass -
And threw them all away. "My business suit,"
I thought, "is no excuse for being an ***".