NaPoWriMo – Day 10 (Simultaneity)

Today’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) prompt is: We’d like to challenge you to write a poem of simultaneity – in which multiple things are happening at once.

I bounced down the stairs carefree,
one morning around 8:30,
to find no one where they’d normally be.

My brother watching news on TV.
My mom in the kitchen calling Aunt Rosie (in New York City).
My dad pacing angrily,
The newscaster talking about a tragedy.

Then I see, the twin towers fall,
and nothing is the same at all.

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NaPoWriMo – Day 9 (Small Meets Big)

Today’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) prompt is: We challenge you today to write a poem in which something big and something small come together.

Ahh it’s been a busy day so just dropping some quick lines here before it hits midnight!

From a distance,
they are but only ants,
two hikers,
zigzagging up,
the great, expanse.

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NaPoWriMo – Day 8 (Mysterious)

Today’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) is: Write a poem in which mysterious and magical things occur. Your poem could take the form of a spell, for example, or simply describe an event that can’t be understood literally.

This poem is inspired by stories about a haunted house in my hometown.

Broken toys,
litter the floor.
A young voice,
asks for his green dinosaur,
and a child’s pale face peeks through the door,
just like the night before.
Giggling, whispered conversations are overheard in the halls,
and brown crayon drawings cover the walls.
And yet, no child lives here at all.

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NaPoWriMo – Day 7 (Identity)

Woohoo made it through week one of National Writing Poetry Month (NaPoWriMo)! I have thoroughly enjoyed the experience so far. Although it is challenging to share poems I think I otherwise would have left as unpublished drafts, putting myself out there has allowed me to connect more with others. I’ve also loved seeing all the different ways everyone responds to the prompts, definitely inspiring. I am forever grateful for all the great interactions I’ve had so far by participating in this challenge!

Anyway, today’s NaPoWriMo prompt is: Write out a list of all of your different layers of identity. These are all ways you could be described or lenses you could be viewed through. Now divide all of those things into lists of what makes you feel powerful and what makes you feel vulnerable. Now write a poem in which one of the identities from the first list contends or talks with an identity from the second list.

I liked today’s prompt. In writing my lists, I realized that much of what makes me feel “powerful” also makes me feel “vulnerable” and vice versa. Anyway here’s my drafty draft take on the prompt, focusing mostly on my “identities” as an editor at work and as a generally anxious person:

I edit, I type, I rewrite,
I catch, typos that almost look wright right,
Passive voice,
Wrong word choice,
Misconnections,
Bad directions,
Out-of-order sections,
Too long of lines,
and phrases used too many times.

They say
I “have an eye for error,”
“A skilled repairer,” I “make thoughts clearer,”
“A revisor of letters,” I “make drafts better,”
“A great communicator, translator, parer…”

But my doubts are always greater,
Did I make the right call?
Did I improve anything at all?
As my stomach fills with knots,
I’ll wish, I could put a period to my thoughts.

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NaPoWriMo – Day 6 (Line Breaks)

Today’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) prompt is: We’d like to challenge you to write a poem that stretches your comfort zone with line breaks. 

I really had fun with this prompt! I’ve already got other poems swirling in my head so it definitely got me inspired.

Hope.
Is like catnip on a rope.

It,
dangling,
    swinging,
nearly being.

You,
wanting,
    snatching,
    almost catching.

But,
It.
Is.
Always.
In.
Someone.
Else’s.
Hands.

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NaPoWriMo – Day 5 (Photo/Language)

Today’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) prompt is: We’d like to challenge you to write a poem that reacts both to photography and to words in a language not your own.

I picked a poem by Italian author Dario de Judicibus since I am Italian! Despite the neat combination of the beautiful photo and words, nothing totally original came to me. I ended up reworking a poem I wrote previously that I thought jibed well with the photo and Italian poem.

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ALBA

Il cielo è un acquarello
di pallidi rosa e persi azzurri
mentre il vento scivola
tra l’umido verde brillare nel sole
a rapire dall’aria
un fresco odore di vita
e portarlo al mio cuore.

LEAVES

Loving you is as easy
as the breeze
rustling through the leaves
touching you and me
Like leaves in the fall,
we pick each other off
floating lost.

NaPoWriMo – Day 4 (Abstract)

Today’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) prompt is: We challenge you to write a poem that is about something abstract – perhaps an ideal like “beauty” or “justice,” but which discusses or describes that abstraction in the form of relentlessly concrete nouns. Adjectives are fine too! 

I don’t feel I really accomplished the “concrete” nouns, but unfortunately, I don’t have more time to work on this piece! Hoping to play with this more at a later date to get it more descriptive.

Panic

Wide eyes, hypnotized,
relentless butterflies,
twisted hands, tongue-tied,
soothing lies, gun-shy.
Jumping veins,
and thought trains,
dragging chains,
with my remains.

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NaPoWriMo – Day 3 (List Poem)

Today’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) prompt is: We challenge you to write a list poem in which all the items are made-up names.

I decided to make a list of items related to reading (so not totally made-up names), but it’s what came to my mind as an editor! This is…not the best, but it’s my first stab at list poetry at least, or something like it!

I read

Bus signs while commuting,
in between lines while disputing,
and PowerPoints while doodling.

I read

Different takes on history,
but based on facts preferably,
and unsolved mysteries,
that make me sleep uneasily.

I read

Books about dogs who can think and speak,
magical creatures and fantastical freaks,
long hikes that inspire,
and complex science-y stuff that makes my brain tired.

I read

To learn about other lives,
wondrous sites,
writers I like,
and facts for trivia night.

I read

With a pen to mark up words,
with my eyes tired and hurt,
until all the lines blur,
but at least I caught the ‘he’ that should be a ‘her.’

I read

To study, to grow, and to hopefully be,
someone who others will want to read.

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NaPoWriMo – Day 2 (Dialogue)

Today’s National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) prompt is: We’d like to challenge you to write a poem that plays with voice.

– Him – 
I remember all your jokes,
you’d look at me like I was your only hope,
I wanted to be your everything
and that’s what I tried to do,
but I failed you, but I failed you.

I always knew, we were on borrowed time,
I just thought, I’d be just fine
until I fell in love,
I couldn’t give you up, I couldn’t give you up

– Her – 
We don’t know what we don’t know,
So let it go, so let it go.
We’re so young, but our love’s too old
So let it go, so let it go.

I didn’t know, what to say,
when you let me down that day,
so I pushed you away,
just to make you cave, just to make you cave

You never see, what I really mean
If it were me, I’d never leave,
but it’s too late,
It was my mistake, it was my mistake

– Him –
We don’t know what we don’t know
So let it go, so let it go
We’re so young, but our love’s too old
So let it go, so let it go.

I should have never, walked away,
Where would we be, if I had stayed?
Step by step, I live with this regret
You were my best, you were my best.

I can’t be, what you need
no amount of make believe
could change that
we’re suffering, we’re suffering.

We loved as best as we could
but we never should, but we never should.

– Her – 
We don’t know what we don’t know,
so let it go, so let it go
We’re so young, but our love’s too old
so let it go, so let it go

I give you, every reason for peace,
you don’t owe me, anything,
Just find a way, to be happy again,
my dearest friend,
this isn’t the end, this isn’t the end.

because we don’t know what we don’t know
and maybe when, we let this go
we could find, a better home,
so let it go, so let it go.

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NaPoWriMo – Day 1 (Shame)

For the first time ever, I am participating in National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo)! I will be responding to the writing prompts posted on the NaPoWriMo site each day during the month of April. The goal is to write 30 poems in 30 days.  Today’s prompt is: Today, we challenge you to write a poem that is based on a secret shame, or a secret pleasure. It could be eating too many cookies, or bad movies, or the time you told your sister she could totally brush her teeth with soap. It’s up to you. Happy writing!

When I was nine years old,
My mother went to the hospital,
unable to remember,
her own name,
or that I was her daughter.

There she battled for her life while
I went on with my life,
never missing a day of school,
where people would smile,
and teachers would ask if I was okay.
Of course I was okay, I thought.
And the house, already big, only seemed bigger,
without the person who made it home.

The waiting, like a quiet room filled with tension.

Finally I got to see her, lying as pale as the sheets that covered her hospital bed,
with her arms outstretched,
I was happy she knew who I was,
but I didn’t hug her,
because I was afraid her brain disease was contagious,
and I didn’t know any better.
My mom returned home weeks later,
but she wasn’t who she was before.
She was using new words,
and forgetting the words,
she used to know so well.
She was different,
and yet no one questioned it.
We just smiled at her, loving her,
not for who she used to be,
or who she would become,
but for the whole process that she was.

And years later, I found myself wishing I had
hugged my mom.

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