Day Six . . . started counting on the other hand now. A fifth of the way through National Poetry Month.
Maureen Thorson's NaPoWriMo prompt: "Today, I challenge you to write a poem about food. This could be a poem about a particular food, or about your relationship to food in general. Or it could simply be a poem relating an incident that involves food, like David Ignatow’s 'The Bagel.' Still not convinced? Perhaps these thirteen food poems will give you some inspiration. Happy writing!"
Robert Lee Brewer's PAD prompt: "For today’s prompt, write an ekphrastic poem. An ekphrastic poem is a poem inspired by art. You can pick your own favorite piece of art if you wish. Or you can use one of the examples below." (See Robert's three painting examples here — by Michelangelo, Frida Kahlo, and Alphons Mucha.)
Jed got done first today. He went "rogue": "This is way cooler than writing about food."
Alan did not go rogue today. He offers an ekphrastic poem on a painting that features food, though Alan's focus is on the woman portrayed.
Dambourgez’s A Pork Butcher’s Shop
You know, Alan, I like the attention you give to that carving knife: it's in an interesting place, being on the counter away from her. Did customers carve off their own slices of meat? Also, it seems odd that the woman is reflected in the mirror behind her, but there's no reflection for the point-of-view person. Makes me think of vampires.
The ekphrastic flavor of Sarah's poem today comes not from writing about an actual painting but rather evoking the making of art within the narrative. And the food is resplendent.
Yup, "food" and "ekphrastic" mashed up. You knew it. ヅ
Eating Mr. MIMAL
Ven's ekphrastic poem today takes on one of the twentieth century's supreme surrealists, noting the various actions of eating in the painting.
On Salvador Dalí’s Autumnal Cannibalism
Giants kiss and meld together by devouring each other’s features.
An impossible but all too real scene—mutual destruction through feeding.
Back left: a charred cliff face rises out of nicotine stained sand,
casting a thin shadow that reveals that this seemingly imposing cliff
is just a thin sniff of rock. A mere morsel—but one with an occluded fire at its heart.
Back right: more distant than the cliff larger moutains of black loom. A heartier
helping, a voluptuous valley, which is home to a structure. An ivory building. Strong,
permanent, at this distance it appears normal. Safe, solid. Not burned or melted
or devoured or self-replicating. That distant ivory building is the strangest thing in this painting.
Foreground: attention mainly falls on the main course of course, our lovers, our giants,
our towering facades of self that are eating themselves and each other. Their faces are everymans
and everywomans. Their faces are featureless. Unimportant. Blank slates. Well, except for ears.
Ears are all gristle I guess, not very appetizing. The figure on the left appears to possibly have breasts—
her red shirt is open and where breasts would be ooze warm white wax, melted of all shapely sensuality.
The figure on the right appears to want to take a bite of this titty-wax. He’s is eagerly inserting his spoon
into this ooze with one hand, whilst reaching round and attempting to vigorously cup more wax with the
other. I say “he” purely because he is clearly so into boobs. That being said, the female is also eating her
own breast. Her left arm wrapping all the way around the other and slicing into her own left breast in a
somewhat casual manner. Her right hand is thrusting a fork into her own face. The couple’s featureless
heads (apart from ears) are in the process of fusing together.
These sexfilled sexless titans are leaning on a green table. I say leaning, but it is entirely possible that
these beasts are just torsos. They could be lower body deprived. Perhaps they started their meal from
the ground and worked their way up. Or started at the genitals and moved down and are now starting
their face course. Perhaps they were born this way.
The green table knows nothing of straight lines. A planeless carpenter clearly cared more for the
smoothness of the wood than hard angles and tidy surfaces.
Items are strewn, forgotten, in front of our lovers/devourers/titans—some olives, some nuts, half a loaf
of bread. This is clearly a kitchen table, useful, practical, a sign of domesticity and homeliness.
Above a half-open drawer some sort of long tongue has been hung on a single imposing nail.
I’ve been calling them devourers but it’s important to note that the couple do not have mouths, at least
not anymore. They are no longer eating. They are spooning, they are forking, they are knifing each other
in an endless cycle— their warm wax bodies absorb the offerings from the cutlery and flow them out
again. Perhaps if they stop their meal they will simply drip into the sand and form a primordial soup.
But there is some hope. Ants scurry over possible honey, dripping a smile where the female’s mouth
used to be.
—Draft by Ven Batista [Do not copy or quote . . . thanks.]
Ven, that's quite a striking prose-poem meditation on this arresting image. Bravo!
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Ingat, everyone. ヅ