Merril D. Smith selected a Lithograph for this week’s Ekphrastic challenge. The history behind the image is interesting. It’s called, “Visitor to German Town.” Created in 1935, the image conjures the past and the present.
Following the ravages of the Great Depression in the 1930s, a growing number of homeowners were forced out of their homes. In this 1935 lithograph, artist Benton Spruance’s allegorical figure of Death, sitting on the steps of a foreclosed home, comments on the spread of vacant homes in his Germantown neighborhood.
In late 2020, Covid rolled in like a storm on the heels of the cold autumn wind. Pestilence wore the dry bones of death, rattling deep in the chests of its victims. Life as we knew it ended, and a new world grew out of the old ways of thinking.
Think you can’t write poetry? Join me, and learn some tips and tricks in writing syllabic poetry. Find the book on Amazon: mybook.to/WordCraftProsePoetry.
My latest book will have you crafting poetry the same day. Here is a recent review:
D. W. Peach reviewed May 25, 2021: This book is a must-have for writers of syllabic poetry. Chesebro has the experience and credentials to have crafted this easy to follow and detailed look at twelve forms of Japanese and American syllabic poetry, as well as their variations. Styles range from the well-known haiku and tanka to the less familiar gogyohka and etheree. Though written for poets beginning their exploration of these beautiful forms, I learned quite a lot (and I’ve been writing several of the forms for years). Chesebro’s explanations not only include the technical aspects of each poetic form, but a quick history, the style’s creative intent, and tips for finding inspiration and writing. These aspects of each poetic form are conveyed in a concise manner, and each section is followed by examples of her poetry and the poetry of authors I’ve enjoyed for years. The poems not only illustrate the preceding lesson but are beautiful in their own right. The quality of this book and its citations make it useful as a “text book” on the craft of writing syllabic poetry, appropriate for academic settings. Chesebro’s conversational style, easy to understand explanations, and poetic selections also make it accessible to a wide range of learners. The book’s format lends itself to lesson-planning for young poets.
Highly recommended to poets who are just starting out or who’ve been writing for years. An excellent learning tool filled with wonderful examples of the forms.
This week, Anita Dawes selected the photo for the Ekphrastic photo prompt challenge on Word Craft: Prose & Poetry. The two cinquains will also take care of my poem-a-day commitment for yesterday and today, including NaPoWritMo.
I missed the opportunity to post this on Earth Day as was my intent. It’s been a busy week. My mirror cinquain follows:
This week, the Tanka Tuesday Ekphrastic poetry challenge asked us to write our poetry using the psychology of color. We can take the image at face value, or choose a specific color in the rainbow umbrella to write about, or we can write about the lack of color. However, we interpret this image is up to us… we just have to make sure to incorporate the psychology of color.
Notice the “gray” bland coloring of the waterfall in the image. Gray is an interesting neutral, stuck between black and white, neither good nor evil. This color signifies distance, remoteness, almost a cold reckoning. I used the Badger Hexastich for this image because the short syllable structure helped to convey my word choice. The first stanza accentuates the gray.
The second stanza zeroes in on the symbolism of the rainbow umbrella – diversity found in the colors of the rainbow.
This Badger Hexastich deals with opposites: alone, and with you. Check out the cheatsheet to learn more about this form. It’s updated on wordcraftpoetry. com.
Aishwarya, from Kitty’s Verses, picked an excellent photo for this month’s photo prompt. There is so much to write about.
I chose to write a senryu this week. Senryu are untitled, but for this challenge we use titles to keep our posts straight.
I don’t know… this photo haunted me. There with so many poetic possibilities. Finally, I settled on the old saying, “You can’t go home again.” Those railroad tracks definitely lead to the unknown.
There’s something poetic about the first time you leave home. When you return, it’s never like it was before you left. Time marches on and our perspectives change. We view life through the lens of a fool’s paradise. You know, the feeling of happiness you hold onto because you’re ignorant of the negative aspects of a situation? It’s all part of the growing up process.
“You Can’t Go Home Again,” #Senryu
a fool’s paradise journey into the unknown never to return
This week for my poetry challenge, Ritu picked an interesting photo. I got excited at what the rest of you saw or felt from the image. Some detected a malevolence, while others conveyed a normal evening with the moon overhead.
Shadorma poetry has its own rhythm and flow, called a sestet, a six-line stanza poem with syllables: 3/5/3/3/7/5 (26 syllables). As far as I can tell these poems don’t rhyme.
In my poetic research, I can find little out about the form. Supposedly, it originated in Spain, but I can’t back that up with facts. It could be a made-up form… does it matter? Someone made up all of these forms at one time or another. Have fun and experiment with the Shadorma.
Once in a Blue Moon
moonlit oaths broadcast to the night shuttered panes secrets kept in old segregated rooms unheard truths remain
From the examples I’ve seen of the form, the definition of phrase is in the eye of the beholder. A compound or complex sentence is probably too long, but I’ve seen phrases as short as one word and others more than five words.
So it’s a little loose, which is kind of the theory behind gogyohka. It’s meant to be concise (five lines) but free (variable line length with each phrase). No special seasonal or cutting words. No subject matter constraints. Just five lines of poetic phrases.
Robert Lee Brewer
So, using this week’s #PhotoPrompt image from my poetry challenge, I’ve written the simplest of forms – The Gogyoka in 5 lines, short phrases:
blossoms bring happiness buds produce fertility, joy peacock reveals beauty vines promise longevity, perseverance soul awakens from the lotus