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Poem, Found

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Prompt: Take lines from your favorite poet and rearrange them into a found poem.

From poems by Anne Sexton – That Story

You always read about it.

outside the summer flies sing like a choir

into your redeeming skin

We are of little faith.

We talk too much.

There is so much abundance

And how I came to this place

as your heart falls out of your mouth

loving me with my shoes off

and picking wild blueberries

You do drink me.

for I am at the mercy of rain

luscious and round and sleek

That story.

 

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Friday Five3

I’m having fun/trouble narrowing down poets this month. Today, I bring you tiny snippets of five of my favorites that I hope you will read.

  1. Audre Lorde – start with The Collected Poems of Audre Lorde
    From “Sisters in Arms” –
    “and wherever I touch you

    I lick cold from my fingers
    taste rage
    like salt from the lips of a woman
    who has killed too often to forget
    and carries each death in her eyes”
  2. Martin Estrada – Imagine the Angels of Bread
    From the poem of the same title –
    “this is the year that the food stamps
    of adolescent mothers
    are auctioned like gold doubloons,
    and no coin is given to buy machetes
    for the next bouquet of severed heads
    in coffee plantation country.”
  3. Yehuda Amichai – The Poetry of Yehuda Amichai
    From “In the Middle of this Century” –
    “The earth drinks men and their loves
    Like wine,
    To forget.
    It can’t.
    And like the contours of the Judean hills,
    We shall never find peace.”
  4. Aja Monet – My Mother was a Freedom Fighter
    From the poem of the same title (read at this year’s Women’s March) – 
    “In a midnight voice, arms extended,
    she reads blues that lay the soul to dust.”
  5. Adrienne Rich – Collected Early Poems
    From “Two Songs” –
    “I’d call it love if love
    didn’t take so many years
    but lust too is a jewel
    a sweet flower and what
    pure happiness to know
    all our high-toned questions
    breed in a lively animal.”

Who are some of your favorite poets?

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Friday Five3

I thought it was time for a new picture. I may be trying out several pictures for Friday Five.

To celebrate National Poetry Month, I’ll be showcasing poets and books of poetry and activism through poetry – basically, if there’s verse to it, it’s fair game.

  1. First up is a book that feeds my obsession with food writing. Nicole Gulotta has a new book out called Eat This Poem: A Literary Feast of Recipes Inspired by Poetry. It’s so gorgeous. I could live in the pages of this book.
  2. Nayyirah Waheed is the author of Salt and Nejma, and her words can slice right through you. Her poetry holds treasures such as:
    “i am mine.
    before i am ever anyone else’s.”
    and
    “you
    not wanting me.
    was
    the beginning of me
    wanting myself.
    thank you.
    -the hurt”
  3. For those who write poetry, Entropy has compiled a list of markets with no reader fees accepting submissions.
  4. If you’re not following Button Poetry, you should fix that. Click like. You know you wanna. I love spoken word, and they highlight a lot of newer poets, which I like as well.
  5. And because ’tis the season – The Mother Warns the Tornado by Catherine Pierce. “I will invent for you a throat and choke you.” Whoa.

Who are some of your favorite poets?

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Friday Five2

“Five” is more of a guideline, really.

Because I believe in reaching beyond limits and breaking all manner of ceilings, I’m not going to limit my links this week to five. I believe we can all benefit from going beyond our limits today (and also tomorrow…and for the next four years…). Going beyond our limits and doing and being more is something it would be good for us all to learn to practice.

Things I saved from the Internet this week:

  1. Happy birthday to Michelle Obama on Tuesday. BookBub lists five books she has mentioned loving, because reading and knowledge are power. And I love people who read to kids. This year, I want to follow her example. Reading to children is the only thing I miss from working daycare.
  2. Off the Shelf compiled a similar list of what has been on Barack Obama’s bookshelf.
  3. Ann Patchett wrote a touching goodbye tribute to the Obamas.
  4. My friend Bola has created a character that I can’t wait to see on the screen. A black mermaid? Yes, please. Follow The Water Phoenix on Facebook.
  5. I am not your Teachable Moment – from Everyday Feminism.
  6. Dallas is getting a new independent bookstore – Interabang Books, coming in May!
  7. Another reason to get a piano – studying/playing music is linked to increased civic engagement, improved reading comprehension, and better math skills. While I am firmly in the camp that believes that defending the study of music because it’s good for other things is “like defending kissing because it gives you stronger lip muscles for eating soup neatly,” I also recognize that it is good for other things. And we may need it to be good for other things…
  8. …because Betsy DeVos. Tell your senators no. Here are some ways.

And my favorite thing I’ve read this week – it’s long, but so worth it. To Obama, With Love, and Hate, and Desperation.

Edited to add – my friend Jamie Wright Bagley has a poetry e-course that is up on her website. It’s free, but it’s only available for a limited time. You want to do it!

 

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Happy new year, everyone! I will post my resolutions and goals early next week, but the planning phases began months ago. Here are some sites I’ve saved to help me out.

  1. I’m obsessed with poetry these days, and I write better in general when I read and write poetry, so I’m going to do more of both those things this year. I love this post from Interesting Literature listing 10 Winter Poems.
  2. I want to submit writing for publication more often. If you’re an essayist, consider submitting an essay about learning from nature here. Deadline is February 1.
  3. Getting up earlier (on days when I have to be somewhere in the morning – not everyday. Let’s be reasonable) is something I desperately want to be good at. When I accidentally do it, the day goes so much better. Here is a little motivation on that front. I want to be insanely healthy!
  4. I love anything that makes cleaning easier and less time-consuming. This list actually has tips I’d never heard of before.
  5. And finally, this article from NPR addresses a problem that has wormed its way into my writing in the last few years. Pandering slows me down and makes my writing weaker. More on this next week.

Welcome to 2016!

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Advent Poem

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As is the way of Advent, I’ve done some slowing down.

I’ve finished the semester and have helped with room checks; today is actually my last day at work for two and a half weeks!

I’ve finished the introductory revision course with Joan Dempsey. If you have a manuscript that you need to revise, and you don’t know where to start, she is the person to help you. Her next course  – Revise with Confidence – starts on January 26, 2016, and $99 is a steal of a price.

Now I’m soaking in Beth Morey’s Poetry Is course (which you can still sign up for!). I like it because you work at your own pace. That’s good, since I signed up three weeks ago and haven’t even finished Week 1. But Week 1 is found poetry, so I might be dragging my heels a little, because I love it.

The picture above was my first poem that I art-journaled for the course.

How could it be?

To know without kiss of spoil

To receive you whole among us.

That pretty much sums up Advent to me. Wonder, expecting, knowing, receiving.

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[I always feel weird saying I’m writing “haiku,” because while I can totally do the 5-7-5 thing, there’s a nuance to it that I miss because I don’t know Japanese. Part of me wants to learn Japanese just so I can write proper haiku. Maybe that will be my goal for my 50th year.]

My Facebook page has informed me that the “113 people who like Suzanne Terry, Writer, haven’t heard from you in a few days.” It’s just been 5 days, Facebook.  Calm down.

The problem this week has not been writer’s block. I don’t often have that problem. I can produce some words. The problem is producing words that anyone else would want to read. So this is one of those weeks where I have oodles of content but nothing ready to share. It’s like all the words are locked away for safekeeping.

Writer’s lock, I guess.

But here’s what I can do. I can unlock a few words and give you my week in haiku(ish) form.


Monday, a liar

Easy lulled tranquility

Leaving unprepared


 Tuesday, a charmer

Books, wine, and friends – piece of cake

Sunshine in my hair


Wednesday, a chaos

Spinning, dancing, speaking, rush

Untimely dew spritz


Thursday, a fresh breeze

Calm madness of life and work

Friends gift friends coffee


Friday, a welcome

Whatever comes, light follows

Into shadow night

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