The Poetry Place

End of term - beginning of summer

Thursday, 16 July 2009 6:47:04

Thursday, 16 July 2009 6:47:04
Gathering thoughts for the July sonnet.  It's not the facts of the matter which are so crucial, though they are essential, it's the approach, the slant - a media person would say, the angle, I suppose.  I've now written a lot of celebratory sonnets for people having anniversaries, birthdays, weddings etc and realise that I do need lots of snippets about them - but the next stage is the hardest: deciding what the angle will be. What will the poem hinge on? (Angles, hinges... I'll be talking about opening doors onto a new vision soon.) So also with a July sonnet about a rainy barbecue. What's my underlying (or over-riding) feeling?  Probably the way we do these things in spite of the elements - and manage to wring enjoyment out of it.  We'll see...


End of term gifts

Tuesday, 14 July 2009 7:16:35

Tuesday, 14 July 2009 7:16:35
Ouch, the last two days slipped by rather too fast for me to think about my own writing. I'm now beginning to think about the subject matter for my July sonnet and will share some of that writing process in this blog.  So far, like many writers behind school desks, I'm trying to decide between different topics. The weather has been preoccupying me recently - but would that be something of interest to anyone else? After all I dealt with snow in an earlier sonnet. But the archetypal English rainy barbecue keeps coming back to me....


Final gifts

Thursday, 9 July 2009 7:47:35

Thursday, 9 July 2009 7:47:35
There were so many good lines I can't publish them all - but here are a few more.

I will give you a book that you can never put down

I will give you a light that will never stop shining

I will give you some sparkly red shoes that will take you on a yellow brick road

I will give you a smile that will shine through the dark

Lipstick to make you talk the truth

A rubber to rub out the mistakes in life

Now wouldn't that last one be useful!  Tomorrow I will get back to considering some writing of my own.  I will give you... the lines of a poem that will never be finished.  Well, who knows?


More gifts

Tuesday, 7 July 2009 15:37:17

Tuesday, 7 July 2009 15:37:17
Back from my wanderings, I found lots of poems had been sent to me from Tudor Hall School where I'd run a workshop for Y7s.  here are some of my favourite gifts:

A book full of nothing but happy endings.
A boat that will sail you over the horizon.
A dog that you can trust with all your secrets.
A chair that you can sink into and think.

I will give you some flowers forever in bloom,
A bunch of balloons to lift up your spirit,
I will give you an elephant so you will never forget.

More to come!


Hyena on Holiday

Friday, 19 June 2009 20:01:42

Friday, 19 June 2009 20:01:42
I shall be away for the next two weeks, seeking inspiration on another shore. In the meantime I leave you with this from a Y7 in the 'Gift' section...

I will give you a hyena so that you will always have someone to laugh with.

Good, eh?


A Carpet??

Thursday, 18 June 2009 23:01:57

Thursday, 18 June 2009 23:01:57
So you want to give me challenges?  Carpets, indeed...

I will not give you a silk scarf
or a necklace
but a carpet
a carpet on which you can sit and listen to strange stories
a carpet on which you can lie and look at the sky through the ceiling
a carpet on which the dogs will loll with their adoring eyes
a carpet
which will
wrap you
in its folds
and take you to new places
where you will meet
old friends


I give you a...wall

Wednesday, 17 June 2009 18:24:20

Wednesday, 17 June 2009 18:24:20
No, i'm not obsessed with barriers. Its just that a pupil suggested a wall to me and I thought I ought to be able to incorporate it.

Not book of love poems
or a sonnet...
I give you... a wall.
A wall of sun kissed brick
red with the rays of a hundred summers
its crevices home to a thousand insects
which buzz and whirr in its interstices
and against its edges, creepers:
ivies and honeysuckles
in which blackbirds and wrens
nest each and every spring.

I've always wanted to use interstices in a poem.  (Also discovered that the first lines - what I will not give - are harder than the remainder.)


I give you... a gate

Monday, 15 June 2009 17:23:58

Monday, 15 June 2009 17:23:58
Not a perfume in a bottle in a box
inside scented paper
tied with ribbon
I give you...  a gate
Which opens into a garden
where you can have all the scents you want
and sights too
or into a meadow
where the grasses are real
and the flowers have not been bought
from garden centres or service stations
and if you are lucky
there will also be
butterflies


Valentine in June

Tuesday, 9 June 2009 12:23:22

Tuesday, 9 June 2009 12:23:22
In the Workshop I've revently added, very much out of season, some ideas based on the Duffy poem, Valentine.  As I was doing so, I wrote a couple of possibilities, really off the top of my head, and then got rather taken with the idea.  These are the ones I wrote

Not a sloppy card or a bunch of flowers.
I give you a monkey.
A monkey carrying a bunch of bananas
Ripe and yellow
Curved and flavoursome
A monkey who can do tricks
And juggle
Who will make you laugh
Whenever you think of me.


Not a gift wrapped box
Smelling of scent
I give you a field of sheep
They are gentle
They make woolly noises
And rub their noses in the grass
They stick together
Till the very end…

And now I'm thinking of others.  Almost anything, I think, could be used...


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