Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Writing in October

The autumn continues to be splendid. Each chore is less daunting because of the beauty that surrounds me. In the early morning or late in the afternoon when the sun hits the dazzling trees, the leaves look like they glow and shimmer.

We are preparing for a fall repair of ceilings and walls at this house. I could just cry at the thoughts of it all.  I am going to have to say goodbye to 30 year old wallpaper that still looks good enough for me. Oh, I know it is dated…but so am I, and that wallpaper has looked down on a lot of living in this house. Not only will rooms of furniture be moved, but LOADS of tea pots, tea cups, and “stuff”.

Among other things this week, DH drove a few miles to buy a load of oak and cherry for winter projects. He buys from a great Ozark lumber place that cuts, dries, and planes nice wood. Once this first project is finished, he will move to some handcrafted pieces of furniture. Already I am looking forward to winter days where maybe I can write while he builds.

I belong to a wonderful poet’s group out of Cuba, Missouri called The Bombadils. I've never met a single soul there, but they were gracious enough to include me through my participation in Missouri Poetry Society. Leader Dawn Harmon gives us a prompt every month or two and then we can post our work in group emails. Others can comment. It is like a writer’s group only online!

I have missed several of her last prompts due to time and opportunity to work on a poem. I notice that others have been quiet too so everyone has a busy life these days. This month’s prompt seemed like a good assignment to work on.

October Writing Prompt
Pick out a poem either from your own "Dead Letter" file or choose one of your favorite poet's pieces.
Read it through, line by line. 
Re write line by line telling the same story in the opposite emotion.
Re write this two more times changing the emotion each time. 

This is a good prompt because writers should be readers too. Many great writers use the work of others to put them in a writing space, a mood, a genre to write. So when DH drove away to fetch wood and I found the new Mary Oliver book Blue Horses in my mailbox, I gave myself permission to put down the dust mop and sit a spell under autumn skies for a read. It wasn’t long before one of Oliver’s poems moved me to work on a poem for the October writing prompt. While not an exact opposite…and it could use more work…it was fun to do, to play with.

Now that is what a poem, any writing, should be, fun, right?

 First stanza from Mary Oliver’s  I Don’t Want to Be Demure or Respectable.

I don’t want to be demure or respectable.
I was that way, asleep, for years.
That way you forget too many important things.
How the little stones, even if you can’t hear them are singing.
How the river can’t wait to get to the ocean and sky, it’s been there before.
What traveling is that!

My take was I did not want to be thin. (Actually I would, but chances are it won’t ever happen so accept it!)

I Don’t Want to Be Thin

I don’t want to be thin and lean anymore.
I have fought portly pudge for years,
Missed the chewy pull of taffy on my teeth,
Avoided sugar to soften the sharpness of my tea.

Is that really called eating?
What joy to indulge in sauce-drenched pasta
Followed by a decadent frothy tiramisu.
I would be a hefty bulge then but still be me,
As fascinating and sensitive and intent as now.

So instead of suffering the crunch of kale
And sipping chalky protein drinks,
I’m going to enjoy the taste of luscious food,
Savor each salient calorie.
Who I am will still be there--
Just cradled under soft mounds of tasted happiness.


Donna Volkenannt said...

I love your poem. It's a great take on the prompt! And your photo is lovely. Fall is such a beautiful time of year.

Elephant's Child said...

Brilliant photo - and I love your take on the prompt. Who I am will still be there - just more so.

Linda O'Connell said...

I am right there with you. Some days I do everything to avoid the creeping pudge, and the next I will eat all the pretzels covered in fudge. Great poem.

Patricia A. Laster said...

I love your "take" on Oliver's poem. I must get to the assignment now that I've re-read the "rules." I feel the same way as you about eating. Snack foods as we have access to today were not a temptation, so we had to eat raw oats, cocoa, and sugar after school. Still...... I've always been on the pudgy side, so I live with it. xoxo

Lisa Claro said...

"Just cradled under soft mounds of tasted happiness." Yep. I can totally relate. Great poem!

Susan said...

ha ha ha ha ha Oh Bookie, that was a super poem. So true, too. ha! Submit that one.

Loved your visit, too.

I have been totally enjoying autumn, too. It's been a splendorous one. Susan

Lynn said...

Beautiful poem. Makes me happy about my eating habits of late :-)! And sorry about your wallpaper... perhaps a story about it will help.