Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Day 12 ... NaPoWriMo / Poem-a-Day 2016


Day 12. At least a dozen poems for each of us by the end of the day.

Maureen Thorson's NaPoWriMo prompt: "Have you ever flipped to the index of a book and found it super interesting? . . . Today, I challenge you to write your own index poem. You could start with found language from an actual index, or you could invent an index, somewhat in the style of this poem by Thomas Brendler. Happy writing!"

Robert Lee Brewer's PAD prompt: "Two-for-Tuesday day! For today’s prompt, take on one (or both) of the following prompts: (1) Write a serious poem. Or . . . (2) Write a silly poem."

Here's my index poem about an ongoing drama that continues to unfold more bizarrely each day. Blending the three prompts today: a made-up book's made-up index that has serious elements as well as some downright silly ones.

From the Index of Rock ’Em Sock ’Em Robots:
The Great Presidential Election Battle of 2016


Peace
      Bernie Sanders and, 34, 67-68, 233
      World, Bernie Sanders and sparrow, 73
Peacemakers
      blessed are the, quoted by Ted Cruz, 35, 212-22
      manufactured by Colt, 222
Peaches
      Hillary Rodham Clinton and Georgia, 157
      See also peanuts
Peanuts
      Hillary Rodham Clinton and Georgia, 160
      Jimmy Carter and, 161. See also peaches
Peevishness
      Donald Trump and, 23, 72, 177-80, 236
      See also petulance
Penetration
      strategy in campaigns, 249
      See also pentacles
Pennywhistles
      as Clinton campaign gifts, 195
Pentacles
      rumored to have been used by all campaigns, 245-48
      See also penetration
Peso
      Mexican, and Trump businesses, 277
Petard
      Ted Cruz hoisted on his own, 54-58
Petulance
      Donald Trump and, 89, 134-36, 199-202, 254 n. 2, 286 fig. 3
      See also peevishness

—Draft by Vince Gotera    [Do not copy or quote . . . thanks.]

Alan excerpts from an actual index in an actual book.

Quotidian Items Listed in the Index for
Dr. Ruth Westheimer’s Sex for Dummies (1995)


Africa, 136-137
America Online (AOL) 256-257
anticipatory anxiety, 295
appearances do count, 360

Beverly Hills Hotel, 138

camping, 139
changing diapers is sexy, 364-365
Compuserve, 257
cooties, 279

Desert Shadow Inn of Palm Springs, 138
doing things with your spouse, 115-116
doormats, 61-62

e-mail, 258
English-speaking countries, 135-136
Europe, 135-136

flat moment, 307
friendships, 51-52

gigolos, 373

Hawaii, 134-135
hydraulic prosthesis, 297

icons used in this book, 5-6
Israel, 136

jacuzzi, 162, 250

kissing, 161-162

Las Vegas, 137-138
local motel, 139

Maho Bay Campgrounds, St. Johns, 134
minitels, 255
modems, 257

newsgroups, 258

outercourse, 179-80

Pocono Mountains, 137
Prodigy, 257
pubic lice, 279

radio and sex, 263-64

Stern, Howard, 264
stuff technique, 294

time-wasters, 62-63
TV and sex, 264-265
two-career family model, 113

U.S.A. vacations, 137-138

vacations, 133-138
vestibule, 33
virtual reality, 260

World Wide Web (WWW), 258

X-rated photos, 259-260

you can’t hurry love, 361

—Draft by Thomas Alan Holmes    [Do not copy or quote . . . thanks.]

Alan, some of these items are odd, even puzzling, although serious, while others are just plain silly! Bravo mixing all three prompts!

About his poem today, Ven says, "So this is a serious index poem, I guess. I wanted to be silly but it wasn't happening."

A Selective Index of First Lines
by Emily Dickinson (Johnson Edition)


Angels, in the early morning, 94
Bring me the sunset in a cup, 128
Come slowly, Eden, 211
Dreams are well, but waking’s better, 450
Each life converges to some centre, 680
Finite to fail, but infinite to venture, 847
Glory is that bright tragic thing, 1660
“Heaven” is what I cannot reach, 239
I cannot see my soul, but know ’tis there, 1262
Judgement is justest, 1671
Knows how to forget, 433
Life is what we make it, 698
My worthiness is all my doubt, 751
Not with a club the heart is broken, 1304
Of glory not a beam is left, 1647
Poor little heart, 192
Quite empty, quite at rest, 1606
Remorse is memory awake, 744
Silence is all we dread, 1251
Tell all the truth but tell it slant, 1129
Unable are the loved to die, 809
Victory comes late, 690
We do not know the time we lose, 1106
You love the Lord you cannot see, 487

—Draft by Ven Batista    [Do not copy or quote . . . thanks.]

Ven, this reads fairly well as a connected narrative, not just separate, discrete lines.

Jed went rogue today, eschewing both prompts. He dallies here with Paul Laurence Dunbar and Maya Angelou.

Caged

“I know why the caged bird sings.”
It’s not true; don’t believe me.
But I know why the tiger paces
In his tiny cell.

I’m not a clam,
But I live like one.
Bound up tight
In my shell.

I’ve got teeth and claws.
I want to run!
Tear flesh, taste blood
Under the sun.

Big cats are cowards.
There are no friends
In the wild.
No one will care for you,
No one will pull you through
If you’re wounded.

Don’t make mistakes.
Only lash out
If you can take.
It’s not to fight,
Only to stalk,
To seize!
Or run away.

I know why the tiger paces
In his tiny cell.
It’s boredom.
And fear.
There’s nowhere to go, here;
Nowhere to run to.
To run away.

—Draft by Jedediah Kurth    [Do not copy or quote . . . thanks.]

And then Jed went double-rogue, writing another poem that also doesn't satisfy today's prompts.

Rumplestiltskin

I am the Faerie salesman.
My name is . . . never mind that.
You need gold? It’s free of charge.
Just tell me how large
A pile of gold you need.
It costs you nothing.
Well, it costs your life.
But not by my hand.
The prince’s wife?
He’ll ask for gold again.
Or your life, if you can’t deliver.
I’ll deliver more gold, to buy your life.
Because I’m kind.
Well no, I’m not.
Let’s name a price.
A child. A son. Your first.
What’s more valuable than gold?
More precious than your life?
A child — what’s a child to me?
Why, don’t you see?
I am the Faerie salesman.
What do I do?
I set my prices
By what is valuable to you.
I don't need money.
I could have all the money in the world.
All the gold. All the silver. All the jewels.
Jewels, what are those? Just pretty rocks.
I fill my stocks
With wishes. With desires.
I sell wishes. I take them away.
Always, I get more
Than I give.
You have to live
In fear every day,
Knowing your child is mine.
A boy. A prince. A precious jewel.
What will someone else pay?

You can keep him.
Just guess my name.
John? Andrew?
Pettigrew?

I don’t have to be this ugly.
I sold my looks long ago.

Joe? James? Jehoshaphat?
I let slip—it’s Rumplestiltskin.
I’ll admit, I’m a grinch.
I pinched pennies on that name.
Why keep a name
That someone wants?

You echo back, Rumplestiltskin.
And so I win. You keep the boy.
You tell the story, how you won.
What do I get? Advertising.
People think I’m weak.
They drop their guard.

Who else needs gold?
I’m still here.
Who will buy?
Who will sell?
I’ll win it all
With the next throw of the dice.
(I name the price.)

—Draft by Jedediah Kurth    [Do not copy or quote . . . thanks.]

Sarah also went rogue today. Thanks, Sarah!

Lines

It drifts slowly down the blank page,
a single black dash, a line of virtualized ink
dripping down a whitewashed wall.
Words crawl out from the slits it opens,
blinking in the bright flares
of leftover bits from the intestines of the Internet.
Infants, they sprawl in confused jumbles
across the endless plain of pixels.
Here, they can do great things, shouting into the void,
the vast emptiness that connects untold thousands.
Here, they can be heard with the slightest pressure
of a dainty fingertip, yet silent stand as stoic
guardians of their imbedded meaning.
They puff themselves up under the weight of viewers,
exciting whispers and flurried fist-fights
amongst varied keystrokes. “We are
important. We are special. We are —”
The watcher flips the laptop closed and walks away.

—Draft by Sarah Smith    [Do not copy or quote . . . thanks.]


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