Here are today's "official" prompts. Robert Lee Brewer suggests "a location poem," which might be "physical [or] emotional, psychological, metaphysical, or some other kind of word that ends in -al" (Poetic Asides). Maureen Thorson challenges us today to write "an oldie-but-a-goodie: the homophonic translation. Find a poem in a language you don’t know, and translate it into English based on the look of the words and their sounds" (NaPoWriMo). This is also called a translitic poem.
The phrase "Day 23" reminds me of The Number 23, a 2007 movie starring Jim Carrey. This psychological thriller portrayed Carrey's character becoming more and more obsessed with the number 23, believing that his life and all events around him are connected to 23 or some permutation of 23, and developing extreme paranoia. I'm writing this after struggling mightily for hours with Maureen Thorson's prompt (described below), and I'm feeling a bit like the hapless hero of that movie. Ack.
My translitic plays with Rainer Maria Rilke's great poem, "The Panther," given in German to the right. I'll also quote a proper English translation of the poem at the end of this blog post.
I think I might have satisfied Robert's suggested "other" locations (emotional, psychological, metaphysical): the poem that arose out of the homophonic translation seems to hint at that metaphysical location where business takes place heartlessly, and the title suggests there is pain there, wherever that is. I feel okay about it how turned and I think I can claim to have mashed up prompts today.
And now to Alan, who says, "Heartsore today, folks, I haven't looked at prompts."
Alan, this poem really speaks to me. When I went to the Jesuit high school in San Francisco, my 9th-grade Algebra teacher, Fr. Jacobs, sounds a great deal like this Benedictine calculus teacher of yours. He was a tough old bird, and the grumpiest priest who ever lived, Fr. Jacobs, but we could all tell he cared about us.
I also connect with your feeling here that life was simpler in those days when math would provide a clear answer with an elegant route to get there. But life, or living life, is probably more art than science, and as in writing poems or painting illustrations we don't always know where we're headed, and no one tells us when or if we're correct, but there's nonetheless beauty and reward in it.
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Ingat, everyone. ヅ
P.S. Here's the Rilke poem in English.
Tell it to the Person On Your Left
1 hour ago