Monday, January 16, 2012

Poetry Begins as a Lump in the Throat

I have always loved books, but when I was younger, the type of writing I always took part in was poetry. Most of it was nonsensical, but it was all real and from my heart. Once I took my first creative writing class in high school my sights shifted in the writing world, but this quarter they have leveled out quite nicely. I am taking both a fiction and a poetry writing seminar and I have never really felt more inspired than reading words that have been read for centuries and practicing the art of creating characters that will somehow touch people's lives.

I'm not going to say much more; I just want to share some of the pieces I've written and shared in my poetry seminar . . . I hope they are enjoyed- or at least appreciated.


Pitter-patter of socks on hard wood
Exasperated giggles from tickle wars
Cold fingers reaching to warm themselves in yours
Disney Channel and Wizards of Waverly Place
Short hugs and quick ‘I love you’s’
Sparkling, intoxicating eyes of blue
Snuggly moments and nap time woes
Concert dreams and Disney Princess rooms
Blue bedspreads and teen pop tunes
Days of Mac-n-cheese and PB&J
Hours of ‘when’s mom coming home?’
And minutes of temper tantrums thrown
Memories made and tears of laughter making me cry
This is a nanny’s lullaby.

Tree of Life
Branches so delicate we wait to hear the crack of despair 
Hands joined tightly as we let loose our hair
This is the gathering place of our souls
Under  the clouds darkened like coals.
Some may call us a bramble of witches,
but there are no brews here, no bodies laced with stitches.
We bathe ourselves in white
We dance and sway for the night-
Girls bound in chains of lace
Girls trapped within a serving face.
Feet tapping like the dropping rain
Across the threshold and barriers of pain-
They mold us and form us to be a new wife
We scramble and scurry for that lone tree of  life.

The Hospital's Symphony
And the heart beats slow- 
The lub-lub, lub-lub, lub-lub,
A rhythmic dance.
And the machinery plays-
Beep-beep- tssss- beep-beep- tssss,
A cacophonous symphony.
And the pen scratches lightly-
Brash and rumple- tisssssk and ZIP!
A prescriptive, melancholy beat.
And the cries of a heart-
Phlegm snick-snorted, scratch of a tissue on a raw nose
A funeral march before it’s time.

A Crucified Promise
At that cross is where I proved my love-
A love you simply can't fathom, earth-bound as you are.
I know your every move long before you think to extend a muscle-
I had the iris of your eye, the curve of your nose memorized long before a mom and a dad ever met.
At that cross is where I proved my love-
A love you deem a luxury, yet are always attempting to outrun,
But I know your directions before your feet begin the ceaseless process of pacing-
I know the rhythm of your soul before you are intercepted by the beat.
At that cross is where I proved my love-
A love you and many more cannot fathom,
But I was made for patience-
And you were meant to be a creature of question,
So I will be still and I will be here- or there- in your heart.
At that cross is where I proved my love-
A love you will ultimately follow-
Because it will lead you back.

I am a woman:
            Of thick hips and curves,
            Of sweet, soft canvas.

I’ve been a girl:
            Momma told me to always smile.
            I just never showed my teeth.

I’ve been a target:
            Under the harsh words of adolescent fire.
            I made a stand- at the desperate age of 24.

I’ve been a daughter:
            From the history of men of the outcry,
            I carried my head upraised and kept my feet delicate.
            I crafted a passage of my own.

I’ve been a sister:
            The boy child brought me great distress- now pure elation.
            They hear the whispers in the twilight, they see the survey of interpretation.

I am a woman:
            FiancĂ©e of wanderlust  and champion for the silent,
            Discovering the spaces I harmonize well – well within my own temple.

It was Robert Frost who said, “I have never started a poem yet whose end I knew. Writing a poem is discovering" and it really is just so spot on . . .
So, what do you want to discover today?

-Stephi D.

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