The number 13 always reminds me of a radio station from my youth in San Francisco, the soul station KDIA at 1310 AM on the dial. I can still hear the station-identification jingle, "
Robert Lee Brewer’s Poem-a-Day prompt: "write a family poem. It could be about your family, someone else’s family, a big family, a small family. It could be about one person in the family or a group picture. Your call. Just write that poem."
Maureen Thorson’s NaPoWriMo prompt: write a "ghazal. The form was originally developed in Arabic and Persian poetry, but has become increasingly used in English
One of my favorite ghazals — pronounced like "guzzle," by the way — is Patricia Smith's "Hip Hop Ghazal." Her repeated end-word is hips, preceded by the rhyming sound ooo. Smith also incorporates her first name in the last couplet. Fun. Full of sass and 'tude. Ooo. ヅ
I'm so pleased at today's prompts. I have been writing a poetic narrative, a novella-in-poems, about two aswang, mythical Philippine monsters — Clara the winged vampire and Santiago the shapeshifter weredog — who fall in love and attempt to live like normal humans, in plain sight, in daylight, trying to outrun their monsterly selves. They marry and bear a son, whom they name Malcolm, baptized in the Catholic church. The question they dread is this: is Malcolm doomed to be like them, an aswang? Or will he be something new under the sun? Today, with a challenge to write a ghazal on family, I can advance my aswang project and explore the existential quandary these two lovers face in their quest to be "normal."
Son of Aswang
Instead of using my own name in the last couplet, I cite the two aswang lovers as well as the baby's name. They are, after all, the poets here, the "makers" in the root sense of the Greek word poesis. This is the second ghazal in my aswang poem cycle.
By the way, just for fun, there is now a toy aswang action figure made by Funko POP. Isn't that cool?
Alan has been very busy at work of late. He is involved in a two-day literary conference at East Tennessee State University, and Catherine Pritchard Childress (who did NaPoWriMo with me in the blog five years ago) has played a principal role in keeping everything rolling.
Alan gives a small intro to his poem today: "Here is a ghazal about a family member. If you're looking for my name at the end, I have relied on the root meanings of two of my names."
Excellent ghazal, Alan. I appreciate how you have incorporated a rhyming sound (-out) in front of the repeated end-word Byrum. Brilliant!
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Ingat, everyone. ヅ
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