Mum’s always telling us
not to talk to people we don’t know,
not to get in strange cars.
And just in case of an unforeseen hitch
which stops her coming to fetch us
she’s given us a password
we must ask for.
A man said, outside the school
”Your Mum can’t come -
her car’s broken down,
she says you’re to come with me.”
I said back to him, ever so politely,
”Please give me the password
so I’ll know that what you say is true.”
He um-ed and ah-ed
then climbed in his car.
and drove off furiously,
as we ran home, happily.
PS the password was secret
Napowrimo wanted a poem for a child yesterday.
Brevette = a three word poem: noun v e r b noun for Creative Bloomings
s o o t h e s
p r o v o k e s
c a u s e s
c a l m
We navigate by water towers,
wind turbines, slip roads to the motorway,
or tractors towing mountains
of fat round bales of hay.
We navigate by birds of prey
hovering above – that’s a kestrel -
or swallows gathering on the wires
discussing whether to go or stay.
We navigate to go somewhere -
it doesn’t matter where
just for the rhythm of the journey
just a jaunt or faraway.
for dVerse Poets’ Pub, with a nod in the direction of Miz Quickly, whose repetitive prompt I have already covered today. This poem is an anaphora.
I repeat, antanaclasis
a figure of speech.
Some lovely new words
in Miz Quickly’s prompt today
like Epistrophe -
or last, makes no difference
anaphora, it’s all Greek
to me, I repeat.
find what others have done with these wonderful words over at Miz Quickly’s place
Napowrimo Day 21 wants us to write in “New York School” style, whose poems display a sort of conversational tone, references to friends and to places in and around New York, humor, inclusion of pop culture, and a sense of the importance of art (visual, poetic, and otherwise).
Of NY pop culture I am totally ignorant, and until I read some of the poems posted to this prompt, this kind of rambling self-indulgent poetry had never come my way. But you know me, I’ll always have a go at something new! You have been warned! This also covers Miz Quickly’s day 20 prompt wanted us to Fixate on Colour.
Fixated on Colour
Have you noticed how in any given street,
you see a bewildering eye-wounding array of colour?
You know, that Mr Freeman? He’s a keen gardener,
yet he plants African marigolds of the vilest orange
right beside dianthus of baby pink.
Next door the front garden is full of plastic,
yellow and red, mostly, though I did covet
a blue and white football yesterday.
Let’s face it, the kids have to play somewhere.
Along the road a bit there’s a patriotic display
of salvias, alyssum and lobelia alternately
around a six-foot square of grass. That’s it.
With all the gardening programmes on TV these days
you’d think someone would introduce a bit of Capability Brown.
And then there are the front doors:
a row of houses apes a Monopoly board
or maybe a Jackson Pollock scatter-gun picture
-from dog-scratched patchy black
to chi-chi aubergine or defiant emerald green,
and every colour in between
Age, I mean, whose fragile bones make aches and pains,
whose wayward limbs give to my walk a rocking sway
so passing folk are inclined to say “She’s drunk.”
The years have stolen my height away,
twice missed and sinking, four feet ten
instead of five feet two with sharp resentment
instead of that graceful sashay in the dance -
beside the TV, I sit and gloom at my crochet
- the bridge ahead an unthinkable way
to reach the other side of the water.
for Brenda’s Sunday Whirl, Wordle 157 and NaPo day 21 (yes, I’m way out of synch)
had a silk velvet voice
like Gilbert Becaud,
a repertoire of naughty songs
in impeccable French,
and romantic duets with tante Joan,
Handsome in that bel homme style.
he told funny stories by the mile.
My godfather, he chose my name,
which if Mum had her way would
have been Virginia.
Thank you, l’oncle Bob,
or Robert Henri Louis to be formal,
who smoked a pipe
that was the death of him.
Miz Quickly wants a family poem for day 19 of Napo. As usual, I’m a day late.
How Now Brown Plough?
The dark rich colour
falls from multi-share machinery,
smoothes out the varied shades
that were left by the harrow,
sun-dried to an almost-grey.
Little by little
the deep tones spread
across the horizon
punctuated by pesky stones.
© Viv Blake 19.4.14
Robert Brewer at PAD has asked for a poem with a colour in the title. This couldn’t have fallen better for me. While we were eating lunch, the devoted farmer started putting the finishing touches to the big field which we admire from our house. The poem popped out immediately I saw the prompt!
We’ve enjoyed a week of summer
Sitting, sipping tea, soaking up warmth and being free to read or snooze on the sunlit patio.
Bliss. The sunshade umbrella has been in use, and friends have joined us in our mini-paradise.
I’ve been struggling a bit this week with Napowrimo: For fear of reprisals, I protected yesterday’s poem with a password, but the WordPress system doesn’t give room to explain how legit readers obtain the password – you need to email me for it. So hardly anyone has read it. Tant pis.
Anyway today’s offering is much more lighthearted. The Napo prompt for Day 19 is to write a Rubaiyat , which basically is 4 line stanzas and a rhyme pattern of a, a, b, a.
In olden days a poem was supposed to rhyme
None of that freestyle wandering like mine
strict moon and June was the kind of tune
that led to poems far from sublime.
Was it doggerel they introduced?
Too much rhyme is poetry abused
too strict a metre with rhyme strewn
willy nilly, singsong is produced.
Slant rhyme, half rhyme, no rhyme
can charm us most of the time,
and to rhythm most are not immune
but overdone, each becomes a crime.
I’m all wordled out
from Elizabeth’s lists,
Brenda’s Sunday Whirls
and We Write Poems mammoth ones
Now Miz Quickly’s getting in on the act.
I’m going on strike,
using words of my own -
just a few of them -
from here on in.
Monday’s moon from my bedroom window
We missed the blood moon
Monday – or was it Tuesday?
thanks to Googling.
about dates and times
saw us sleep through the eclipse.
doesn’t need to be prompted
to write poetry.
Either words will come by
themselves or silence will reign.
Thirteen days to go.
Kind Miz Quickly has been giving us wonderful prompts all through the grind of Napowrimo. Today’s is a cracker: Write something that’s half-and-half, in-between, two-tone, or not quite what it seems.
My mind went immediately to those horrible shoes so fashionable in pre-war films.
image via Wikipedia - correspondent shoes, also known as
Half and half news
brown and white -
what a sight.
If I were to sin
it wouldn’t be in
correspondent shoes ~
too conspicuous, right?
This list of words has been nagging at me since the first day Elizabeth posted them, so I decided to knock them on the head once and for all.
Reincarnation is a great idea
so long as I can choose
the form and age and era.
Anything would be better
than being Joan of Arc at Rouen,
her life devoid of hope.
To be a gardener could be pleasant,
with an interest in rare plants,
and a boy to deal with the weeds
I’d wear flannel in the winter
and rub my back with jelly
to defend against lumbago.
Oh – a bad back – a frisson
of fear ripples through me.
No, I think I’ll change my mind,
I won’t come back at all.
She also asked some questions, to which my answers were succinct:
1. Can you define, describe the meaning of one of the words, by using some of the others? NO.
2. How can you celebrate the sound of these words. READ THEM ALOUD
3. What would a ripple affect read like? A GRAMMATICAL ERROR
Miz Quickly suggested we write a triversen for day 14, a quixotic form which I couldn ‘t take seriously:-
Each stanza equals one sentence.
Each sentence/stanza breaks into 3 lines (each line is a separate phrase in the sentence).
There is a variable foot of 2-4 beats per line.
The poem as a whole should add up to 18 lines (or 6 stanzas).
For day fourteen
we should be writing sonnets
with exactly fourteen lines.
Why are folk afraid of sonnets,
when they’re so simple to do
in a variety of ways.
At the last count
I’ve written about forty
some good, some very bad.
Petrarch set the form
There’s Miltonian, Byronic,
or even Supersonic.
That’s a joke
by the way -
I can’t write that fast.
I will never tell you what I know
about why or how curiosity killed the cat
My lips are sealed tight shut so
you’ll never discover
the secret of how my mother
laid poison disguised as a mouse.
The cat wasn’t about
to look gift-horse in mouth
so squeezed eyes to a slit
and pounced upon it,
looking round for admiring applause
before turning up his paws.
And if you believe that, you’ll believe anything.
Miz Quickly’s Day 13 prompt, (which requires us to spill the beans in 13 lines posted day 14 - I’m superstitious)