Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Life of a Poet ~ Hedgewitch!

by Sherry Blue Sky

Kids, such a treat for you today.  We are sitting down with Joy Jones, the renowned Hedgewitch of Verse Escape ! So set down your brooms and draw near to the cauldron. I intend to ask her what magic potion she drinks, in order to write her amazing poetry. If I can get the spell from her, I’ll share. Then we can all write as fabulously as she does.


Poets United: Joy, I am excited to be speaking with you at last. So much to talk about! But first, would you set the scene for us? What is life like for Hedgewitch?


[image from google - layoutsparks.com]

Joy: I live in the heart of Tornado Alley on an acre of red dirt and wind, with my third and final husband of almost twenty years. We share Castle Hedgewitch with a huge Giant Schnauzer/Husky mongrel named Chinook who thinks she is the Iditarod sled dog champ, and a twelve pound Jack Russell terrier who thinks he’s a 400 pound gorilla. My neighbors let me vicariously enjoy their horses, cats and cows, and I let them share my frequently overwhelming and over-ambitious but always much loved garden.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Poem of the Week - As I Leave the Time Machine (30 August, 2011)


Here at Poets United we enjoy a feeling of community, and each week we feature a poem written by one of our members. This week's poem is from the blog of  Buddah Moskowitz, a poet from California, who blogs at   I Hate Poetry.


I think many of us have felt this way as we write poetry:


Sitting here 
with the time machine,
I make glorious plans.

I am taken back to 
memories 
some golden, some bitter 

and taken to dreams, 
allowing myself the conceit 
of clairvoyance.

In the time machine
everything that I am not
does not matter 

it’s just me 
these fingers 
this keyboards
and these thoughts

all
somehow
inexplicably 
working in concert 

for some creative
common end. 

While a man sitting alone at 
a machine 
can hardly be called noble,

sometimes 
if he strikes the idea 
just right 
and the Muse 
has been kind

he’ll write something
that might make a difference

even if that difference 
is only
a smile.

So,
I keep trying, 

though the ideas be 
modest or miniscule.

Perhaps they’ll outlast me
as an incomplete legacy, 

and 
as I leave the time machine
of writing

I will re-engage 
with the real-world

long enough and
deep enough 
to hopefully find 

still more
to bring back 
to the machine.

Thanks, Buddah, for being part of Poets United.  We look forward to reading more of your work.

Friends, we hope you have enjoyed this poem.  Look for another Poem of the Week next week.  One day it will be yours.

Posted for Poets United by Mary Kling, who spends as much time as possible at In the Corner of My Eye.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Blog of the Week - Jae Rose (29 August, 2011)

Poets United believes in supporting our community.  Each week we recognize a Blog of the Week.  This week we would like to highlight the blog by Jae Rose, a poet from the UK.

Her blog is entitled simply:


However, don't let the simplicity of the title and its style let you think you will read simple poems at her site.  Far from it!  Her poems are filled with depth and complexity, are written in her own unique style.  I would like to highlight a few of them for you this week.  Take time to savor them, as they are not 'easy' reads.

Dolly's Head

Screen Face

When the TV Died

Blue Coat

Thank you, Jae Rose,  for being part of our community and for your avid participation!  It is through our participation and sharing with one another that we all enrich Poets United and get to know one another.

Stay tuned.  Maybe next week your blog will be Blog of the Week.

Posted for Poets United by Mary Kling, who can be found at In the Corner of My Eye.





Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Poetry Pantry Is Now Open! - #64

If you have not heard the news the Poetry Pantry is now accepting submissions for our Second Annual Anthology Due to be printed in March.  For more details please click here.



The Poetry Pantry
2nd Chance Poems or 1st time shares

Anything goes!! All Poems, all Poets, All Week!!

Do you have a poem you would like to share? Something that you just felt inspired to write and want others to read. Perhaps it’s a poem that didn’t get as much exposure on your blog as you would have liked. Maybe it’s a poem that you wrote a long time ago that you would like people to revisit. That’s what this section of Poets United is for.

Each Sunday we start a new post with a New Mr. Linky for you. This is so that you can post a link to anything you want us to read, anything at all related to poetry or prose found on your own poetry blogs. It will remain open all week so that you can show us your writings and thoughts. You can post links weekly should you chose to do so. What poetry you put here is up to you so don't be afraid to share with us!!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Classic Poetry - "Friend..." by Jalal ad-Dīn Muhammad Rumi



Jalal ad-Dīn Muhammad Rumi
1207 – 1273

Friend, our closeness is this.
Anywhere you put your foot
feel me in the firmness under you.

How is it with this love,
I see your world and not you?

Rumi, one of my favorite poets, is a constant source of inspiration and encouragement to writers and spiritual seekers throughout the world. I am amongst his fans.

A dear friend gave me a book with the above poem inscribed in the front cover days before she died. It will forever be a favorite.

For more on the life of Rumi, visit this past post by our good friend, Sherry Blue Sky; or check out this Wikipedia entry.

If you are interested in reading more Rumi, consider The Essential Rumi, translated by Coleman Banks.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Now accepting submissions for our second Anthology

As August draws to a close we will now be opening up or mail bag and accepting submissions for our second Poetry Pantry Anthology (Poems, Prose, Photos and Art). We have decided to allow the bulk of our submissions dictate what our secondary title will eventually be. Our target release date is once again in March, just as it was this past year. The last day to submit a poem for consideration will be 15 January 2012.


We intend to include as many submissions as possible while still producing a quality book. The book itself again will be sold by Lulu (an independent print to order press) with little or no profit to Poets United. We will keep it as cheap as possible for our members.


Please read below for further information and guideline.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I Wish I'd Written This

My wife and I were privileged to attend a reading by Jane Hirshfield at Oregon State University a year or so ago.  She is a gentle reader and a powerful writer.  I love this one.

By Jane Hirshfield

My mare, when she was in heat,   
would travel the fenceline for hours,   
wearing the impatience
in her feet into the ground.

Not a stallion for miles, I’d assure her,   
give it up.

She’d widen her nostrils,
sieve the wind for news, be moving again,   
her underbelly darkening with sweat,   
then stop at the gate a moment, wait   
to see what I might do.
Oh, I knew
how it was for her, easily
recognized myself in that wide lust:   
came to stand in the pasture
just to see it played.
Offered a hand, a bucket of grain—
a minute’s distraction from passion   
the most I gave.

Then she’d return to what burned her:   
the fence, the fence,
so hoping I might see, might let her free.   
I’d envy her then,
to be so restlessly sure
of heat, and need, and what it takes   
to feed the wanting that we are—

only a gap to open
the width of a mare,
the rest would take care of itself.   
Surely, surely I knew that,
who had the power of bucket   
and bridle—
she would beseech me, sidle up,   
be gone, as life is short.
But desire, desire is long.

From Of Gravity and Angels by Jane Hirshfield.















Click on the title to go to poetryfoundation.org's posting of Heat and listen to Jane Hirshfield read her poem.  Click on the poet's name to learn more about Jane Hirshfield.

The Thursday Think Tank #63 - Something Stinks


Yes we have visited this prompt once before but it is such a broad and enjoyable topic why not again. As the seasons change so do the smells, odors and aromas around us that are a large part of our lives. Most poets will throw in an occasional reference to a rose, perfume or fresh baked bread, but not much more. We want more.

Mike Patrick one of Poets United’s members brought this to my attention when a mention in a friend’s blog of the smell of fresh-mown hay flashed him back to some wonderful childhood memories. The link between smells and memories is amazingly powerful he said to me and I couldn’t agree more. So this week’s prompt is an unwitting corroboration between Mike Patrick of The Poets Quill and Vivinfrance from Vivinfrance’s Blog. It was a welcome chain reaction of sorts that will now hopefully conclude with your pen meeting paper.

What stinks? What do you smell right now that could inspire your pen? What is your favorite smell? Do you like the aroma of a fresh baked pie or fresh picked flowers? Do you cringe as you pass a sewer plant in a hopeless attempt to hold your breath? I have done that only to run out of time and oxygen and ended up inhaling by mouth and nose a double dose of what I wanted to avoid. Smells mean so much to us and yet at the same time we seem to take them for granted. There are limitless examples, the fresh cool breeze that brings the first signs of autumn, the lilacs and mothballs that were at your grandma’s house.

There are the bad smells too! What about the silent but deadly ones? You know the unmentionable passing of gas, the worst times for this are when you are in a crowded place you cannot get up and leave from. I do not intend this to be sacrilege but an all too common place this occurs for me is church. There I am sitting amongst the throng of believers and the smell hits you. The god awful, I was out all night and now I dragged myself to church to repent fart. Disgusting I know, but many of you know what I am talking about. You can’t just leave the room in the middle of the pastor’s sermon. You can’t groan in disgust or even mutter under your breath an accusation. You have to just sit their politely trying not to breathe while saying seven Hail Mary’s, Prayers or blessings of one sort or another while holding back burning tears. The sad thing about this experience is it comes in waves. Those horrible dreaded periods of waiting for the next one is what gets me.

Perhaps you envy the ability to smell. There are some folks that can pick a scent off the breeze that takes you nearly ten minutes to finally discover? Maybe you have a liking to the more harsh smell like Gasoline. My father used to wash his hands with gas. I enjoyed the aroma when I held his rough calloused hand. My how I so wanted to be my hero.

Today close your eyes and inhale. Take a whiff of the world around you. Close your eyes and think back to your favorite smell or even your dreaded ones. I have offered up an example of just a few of my very own now it’s your turn to share with us.

We are excited to read your work. We can’t wait to close our eyes and smell what you have written about. This time around your nose will do the writing.

Imaginary Gardens with Real Toads

Are you looking to grow as a poet? Are you looking for a more challenging forum where you can learn, create and share many ideas and thoughts about poetry and prose? If you have a little bit more time on your hands and are willing to be a consistent and dedicated member have I got the place for you.

Imaginary Gardens with Real Toads is a newer community that has been developed for the involved poet. It is meant to be a teaching and learning community that is shaped by its members under the kind guidance of Kerry O’Connor. Its members (Toads) post regularly and participate in many thought provoking and creative activities that are found almost daily. If you are just an occasional hobbyist or a for the love of the art poet then this most likely is not the place for you. However, if you want to step up your writing and find you need a little push in the right direction this could very well be that kick in the pants you have been searching for.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Life of a Poet ~ California Ink In Motion

by Sherry Blue Sky

Kids, a while back a new blogger joined Poets United, blazed across our radar and made us sit up and take notice. We're about to sit down with The Ms. LVH (as she wishes to be known) of California Ink in Motion. As she lives very close to the beach, I'm thinking either a glass of chilled white wine, or an after-dinner cup of tea, as we watch the sunset and chat about life along the California Coast.



Poets United: Ms. LVH, so great to sit down with you. I have so many questions. But first, can you tell us a bit about life in the land of California Dreaming?


The Ms. LVH

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Poem of the Week - for you (22 August, 2011)

This week's Poem of the week is by Mario Cerroni who posts at PhotoDiction.







Mario. who lives in Ontario, Canada, is not only a gifted poet, but also a gifted photographer.  His poems and pictures work well together.  I often find that poets  are creative in other ways as well.  Mario is one of those people.

The poem of Mario's I am featuring is called    for you.  You can read it below or follow the link and see the poem as well as the photograph that accompanies it.


for you

the market place is selling memories
on tables lined with faded lace

and on each table the remnants lay
of dreams you might have chased

oh you relics that are cast aside
your purpose long fulfilled

displayed among the tables there
you're hoping for new love to build

yet most will pass so unaware
of your treasures lying dormant

moving by with too short stares
adding to your cruel torment

as you strain to demonstrate
you've lots to give to someone new

in a world you could create
in a life you could renew

like lovers that you've had before
in your youth that's never more

with its never ending serenade
you strain to halt the memories fade

and while the song is getting old
there are stories to still unfold

and though the melody
is lost to all

you still hear the music

and you would gladly
heed its call

Thank you, Mario, for being part of our community.  We always enjoy your work when you share it on Sunday's Poetry Pantry!

Hope some of you will take a look at Mario's poem and his blog.  It is well worth visiting.  Next week we will feature another poem of the week. It may be one of yours.

Mary Kling (who blogs at In the Corner of My Eye) for Poets United.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Blog of the Week - The Passionate Crone (22 August, 2011)

Poets United is all about Community. And each week we highlight a blog of one of our members. This week's blog is The Passionate Crone with poetry by Rosemary Nissen-Wade.  Rosemary lives in New South Wales, Australia.  While you visit her site, you may want to visit her profile, where you will find out such interesting facts as she helped start Poets Union of Australia in the late seventies, pioneered poetry workshops in prisons in the early eighties, formed Word of Mouth Poetry Theatre with some other Aussie poets in 1986.  Today she likes to  'play with poetry online.'




A few poems we would like to highlight are:

She's Merely a Chocolate Dilettante - which made me smile and nod.

A Hope - a touching poem of connections shared.

In Dreams I Return Often - which made me reflect on my own dreams of childhood home.  And you?
Thank you, Rosemary, for being part of Poets United!

We hope you will visit the blog of the week, explore it a bit and perhaps let the author know you visited, and return and share your comments with us.

Next week we will share another blog.  Who knows?  It may be yours!

Posted by Mary Kling (who shares poetry at In the Corner of My Eye) for Poets United



Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Poetry Pantry Is Now Open! - #63



The Poetry Pantry
2nd Chance Poems or 1st time shares

Anything goes!! All Poems, all Poets, All Week!!

Do you have a poem you would like to share? Something that you just felt inspired to write and want others to read. Perhaps it’s a poem that didn’t get as much exposure on your blog as you would have liked. Maybe it’s a poem that you wrote a long time ago that you would like people to revisit. That’s what this section of Poets United is for.

Each Sunday we start a new post with a New Mr. Linky for you. This is so that you can post a link to anything you want us to read, anything at all related to poetry or prose found on your own poetry blogs. It will remain open all week so that you can show us your writings and thoughts. You can post links weekly should you chose to do so. What poetry you put here is up to you so don't be afraid to share with us!!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Classic Poetry-Form by Elaine Mitchell

Form

Elaine Mitchell

Is is a corset
or primal wave?
Don't try to force it.

Even endorse it
to shape and deceive
Ouch, too tight a corset.

Take it off. No remorse. It
's an ace up your sleeve.
No need to force it.

Can you make a horse knit?
Who would believe?
Consider. Of course, it

might be a resource. Wit,
your grateful slave.
Form. Sometimes you force it,

sometimes divorce it
to make it behave.
So don't try to force it.
Respect a good corset. 1924



I love this poem- I couldn't find much of anything related to the author- not a bio or a picture. The lovely Amy Barlow Liberatore offered this video. Anyone else have anything they want to offer about Elaine Mitchell?



Thursday, August 18, 2011

I Wish I'd Written This

Wonderfully descriptive.
 
By Kim Addonizio

Afterwards you had that drunk, drugged look
my daughter used to get, when she had let go
of my nipple, her mouth gone slack and her eyes   
turned vague and filmy, as though behind them   
the milk was rising up to fill her
whole head, that would loll on the small
white stalk of her neck so I would have to hold her   
closer, amazed at the sheer power
of satiety, which was nothing like the needing
to be fed, the wild flailing and crying until she fastened   
herself to me and made the seal tight
between us, and sucked, drawing the liquid down   
and out of my body; no, this was the crowning
moment, this giving of herself, knowing
she could show me how helpless
she was—that’s what I saw, that night when you   
pulled your mouth from mine and
leaned back against a chain-link fence,
in front of a burned-out church: a man
who was going to be that vulnerable,
that easy and impossible to hurt.

from What Is This Thing Called Love.


















Click on the title to go to poetryfoundation.org's posting of First Kiss.  Click on the poet's name to learn more about Kim Addonizio.

The Thursday Think Tank #62 - The 3rd Letter of Your First Name



"I often fantasize about torturing some of the lazier letters of the alphabet, like C, U, and E, because together they only manage to accomplish as much as the solitary letter Q."
~ Jarod Kintz (It Occurred To Me)

If you have not noticed yet we like to shake things up a bit now and then here at the Thursday Think Tank. Our prompts are all over the place and today will be no different. It’s a simple idea. Take your first name (Pen Names and Nick Names are fine). Count three letters over and let that inspire your poem. Yes let one slightly random simple letter inspire your writings today.

"Action, looks, words, steps, form the alphabet by which you may spell character."
~Johann Kaspar Lavater

A simple letter can be so empowering. I can clearly remember the days when I first learned to write. I was so proud to make that huge bubble in the R and for other people to recognize it. Then I began writing my name on the walls with crayons and realized the power of letters. They can help, hurt or just amaze. So what will your letter do? Will it get you yelled at by mom for being somewhere it shouldn’t or will it take us all on adventure that you yourself had no clue you were going to take today?

"Each letter of the alphabet is a steadfast loyal soldier in a great army of words, sentences, paragraphs, and stories. One letter falls, and the entire language falters."
~Vera Nazarian

A simple alphabet letter can be the building block to so much or so little. The question is what will you do with a letter today? We can’t wait to see and possibly learn more about you today. Don’t forget to tell us where your letter came for either as we are always excited to learn about the folks here in our community.

Now I know my ABCs what type of poem will you share with me?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Life of a Poet ~ Danny Earl Simmons

by Sherry Blue Sky

Kids, over the months I have enjoyed this poet’s tenderly beautiful poems about his wife and baby, and knew I wanted to interview him. Shortly before I contacted him, Dan made a decision to  post only poems accepted for publication on his site. So, while right now there may be a scarcity of work appearing on his site, our community applauds his  serious efforts to be published. Dan's first accepted poems will appear in the inaugural issue of Gold Man Review in November of 2011. He also has had poems accepted by Poetry Quarterly, Pirene's Fountain and a blogzine called a handful of stones. 

 
Dan, who lives in the Willamette Valley in Oregon, whose coastline is among the most dramatically beautiful in the world, is also a Poets United staffer, bringing us the I Wish I'd Written This column every week. Dan can be found at Poems by Danny Earl Simmons.


Poets United: Hi Dan. Nice to finally sit down with you. Can you tell us a little about yourself,  your family,  and life in your wonderful part of the world?


Dan: I am 47-years old, married to a wonderful woman for over two years now, and have three sons (25-years, 21-years, 8-months).   Yep, I am an old father.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Poem of the Week - Golden Dog (16 August 2011)

Poets United is all about community. Each week we choose a poem of the week from one of our members. This week's poem of the week is Golden Dog, and it  can be found in the blog  Source of Inspiration by Pat Cegan.

Pat lives in an ecological project called Santa Branca in Central Brazil  It contains miles of restored forests, ecotourism and eccovillage and various environmental projects.  She has been a volunteer from the US there for seven years.  In her blog, she also has some beautiful photographs taken in her area.

With no further adieu, here is Golden Dog, a poem that many of us who love animals can undoubtedly relate to.


Golden Dog

He watches me,
holds my gaze
for long periods of
time, transmitting
from the astral. I
feel engulfed as
I merge with him,
becoming one with
him, yet still
retaining my essence.
Animals are our guides.
How foolish we are to feel
superior to them. Humble
yourself so that you may
receive the wisdom, the
knowing that they so
generously give.

Thanks, Pat, for being part of our communnity. 

We hope all of  you enjoyed this poem and perhaps will spend a little time exploring other poems in Pat's blog.  Who knows, a poem from your blog may be selected next week.

This poem was chosen for Poets United by Mary Kling who blogs at In the Corner of My Eye.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Blog of the Week - Wanjiku (15 August, 2011)

At Poets United we are all about our community. so please take the time support your fellow poets by visiting this very interesting Blog of the Week:  Wanjiku by poet Wanjiku Mwaurah from Kenya.  She is currently working on her first book and does  performance poetry as well.  You can find a lot of other fascinating things about her as you explore her blog.


 Some poems we would like to highlight this week from this unique blog are:

Scream Out Loud

Of Fears

Gold

However we hope you will take a look around this blog, and you will surely find other poetic  treasures!

Every week Poets United tries to introduce our members and readers to a poet and poetry blog found  in our community. Poets United is about reading, writing, and enjoying one another’s poetry; and this is just one more way to show our support for one another. We would love to hear your comments on this poet’s blog and poetry; so please come back after visiting the blog of the week and let us know your thoughts.

We hope you enjoy visiting the highlighted blogs each week. Thank you for supporting your fellow poets with positive comments, and you may soon see your blog highlighted here.

Selected  for Poets United by Mary Kling who blogs In the Corner of My Eye

Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Poetry Pantry Is Now Open! - #62



The Poetry Pantry
2nd Chance Poems or 1st time shares

Anything goes!! All Poems, all Poets, All Week!!

Do you have a poem you would like to share? Something that you just felt inspired to write and want others to read. Perhaps it’s a poem that didn’t get as much exposure on your blog as you would have liked. Maybe it’s a poem that you wrote a long time ago that you would like people to revisit. That’s what this section of Poets United is for.

Each Sunday we start a new post with a New Mr. Linky for you. This is so that you can post a link to anything you want us to read, anything at all related to poetry or prose found on your own poetry blogs. It will remain open all week so that you can show us your writings and thoughts. You can post links weekly should you chose to do so. What poetry you put here is up to you so don't be afraid to share with us!!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Classic Poetry - "One Art" by Elizabeth Bishop


Elizabeth Bishop, 1911 - 1979

One Art

The art of losing isn't hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.

Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.

I lost my mother's watch. And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three loved houses went.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.

--Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan't have lied. It's evident
the art of losing's not too hard to master
though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.

Born in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1911, Elizabeth Bishop, whose father died and mother became ill when she was very young, spent her childhood living in Nova Scotia with her grandparents and in Boston with her aunt. She described her happy childhood as a time during which she was treated kindly, like a guest.

A good student, Bishop graduated from Vassar with a degree in English. During her time there, she worked on the school newspaper, The Vassar Miscellany and co-founded a literary magazine, Con Spirito. After college she traveled throughout Europe, and then lived in New York City, Key West, Florida, and, for seventeen years, in Brazil. She taught at the University of Washington, Harvard, New York University, and at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Bishop’s first book, North & South, won the Houghton Mifflin Poetry Award for 1946. A volume containing North & South and A Cold Spring won the Pulitzer Prize in 1955. Her next book of poetry, Questions of Travel, won the National Book Award in 1965. The Complete Poems was awarded the National Book Award in 1969. Geography III received the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1976, the same year in which Bishop became both the first American and the first woman to win the Books Abroad/Neustadt Prize for Literature.

In addition to teaching and writing poetry, Bishop translated a famous Brazilian diary, The Diary of Helena Morley, edited and partially translated An Anthology of Contemporary Brazilian Poetry, and wrote prolifically for The New Yorker. She received two Guggenheim fellowships as well as honorary degrees from Adelphi, Brandeis, Brown, Dalhousie, Princeton, Smith and Amherst Colleges. A chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, Bishop was also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a consultant in poetry to the Library of Congress in 1949-50. She died in 1979.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

I Wish I'd Written This

What an amazingly honest and orginal voice.  John Berryman was one of a kind.

Dream Song 4
by John Berryman

Filling her compact & delicious body
with chicken páprika, she glanced at me
twice.
Fainting with interest, I hungered back
and only the fact of her husband & four other people
kept me from springing on her

or falling at her little feet and crying
'You are the hottest one for years of night
Henry's dazed eyes
have enjoyed, Brilliance.' I advanced upon
(despairing) my spumoni.--Sir Bones: is stuffed,
de world, wif feeding girls.

--Black hair, complexion Latin, jewelled eyes
downcast . . . The slob beside her feasts . . . What wonders is
she sitting on, over there?
The restaurant buzzes. She might as well be on Mars.
Where did it all go wrong? There ought to be a law against Henry.
--Mr. Bones: there is.






















Click on the title to go to poets.org's posting of Dream Song 4 and listen to the late John Berryman read it himself.  Click on the poet's name to learn more about John Berryman.

The Thursday Think Tank #61 - She


A woman's hopes are woven of sunbeams; a shadow annihilates them.
~George Eliot

When you first read the word “she” what images of a woman flash through your head? Do you see elegance, seduction or wisdom? Who is she? Who is she to you? Women play so many roles in our lives no matter if we ourselves are man or woman. Heck truth be told without a woman man cannot exist. Women have caused nations to fall and rise again. They have given their every ounce of their love to ensure the success of another. They have even done their best to earn two bits. As mothers, teachers, temptresses and doctors there is no place you can’t find the influence or touch of a woman. So who is she? Who do you see today?

A woman should soften but not weaken a man.
~Sigmund Freud

In poetry women are shown in many a light. They can be anything that the pen wants them to be. So many tales of woe and love have been written for a woman and so will many more be written. Even a stranger can inspire a tale of lust, love or knowledge. What story will you add to that never ending chain of feminine tales? Perhaps you saw a stranger today on the train or at a quaint café, someone whose story you would love to imagine. Perhaps a woman of ill repute tickled your fancy and your dime is better spent on the paper writing of your adventure instead of paying for the penicillin later. Maybe the old lady at supermarket reminded you of your grandmother long past but not forgotten. Possibly the innocence of a young girl and her smile is what inspire your poem or prose today.

A woman can say more in a sigh than a man can say in a sermon.
~Arnold Haultain

Whatever your story about a woman is today real life or imagined we can’t wait to read it. Will you seduce us or impart great knowledge? Will you share a simple write from and odd perspective or will you pen the next great epic poem of love.  Show us who “She” is.

Be to her virtues very kind,
Be to her faults a little blind.
~Matthew Prior

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Life of a Poet - Kim Nelson


Kids, I never cease to be amazed at the talented, incredible people we have in this community. One of these is  Poets United staffer and contributor, Kim Nelson, of Kim Nelson Writes . Kim is an award-winning author, whose published works include A Desert Gardener's Companion and Southwest Kitchen Garden. Kim was a recipient of Foreward Magazine's Book of the Year Award. She  has been a regular columnist for Sunset magazine for several years, and has appeared in many more magazines as a freelance writer.


Poets United: Wow, Kim, what an impressive track record! Good for you! Can you tell us a little more about yourself, your family and  life in your part of the world?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Poem of the Week - Unimmortal (9 August, 2011)

Poets United is all about Community.  We wish to celebrate and acknowledge individual poets who are part of our group.  This week's poem of the week  is Unimmortal which is written by  Ostensible Truth,  a poet who describes himself as  a "surrealist writer who writes about this, that and anything, normally from behind a rain-drizzled window with a coffee and cigarette in hand...  "  His blog is Ostensible Truth.

Unimmortal  can be found in the blog -----



Unimmortal

It’s only sometimes
That I forget I’m not immortal;
When bodies break and bone-ruins betray the secrets
Carved into their under-marrow,
Or when paper skin drips in the rain,
Ink collecting around the golden gutter
I throw my poems into,
To force-feed the earth words
That have died a hundred times
On flag headed spikes,
As clouds headbutt each other
Atop a smoke-angel skyline
And baby-death rocks in an alcove under the stairs.
We crumble a little, day by day,
Human sandcastles
Abandoned a little too close to sea;
My grains plucked by a mockingbird
That I shot for pecking at my back
And blowing funeral hymns
Up and down my spine
In heretical hysteria.
I hear it’s bad luck,
So I shot it twice and wear its feathers as a hat,
Only now it sits undying on my shoulder
Cavorting with the jade dragon that chokes me
When I’m not looking
And hangs treacherously from the underbelly of the moon.
We live immortal... until we’re not,
Immortal in the moment,
Eternally wedged
Somewhere between a spider rock and metal thumb,
So I’ll take my solipsism on a tombstone plate,
With epitaph desserts,
And I’ll discredit death until it finds me
With its two-headed gargoyle and spotlight eyes.
I’ll breathe selfishly in the night
And mellowly dream my way to death,
Until I forget how to inhale and have to burn myself to sleep,
Like that suicidal star,
The one that sheds its ghost on water
And ricochets across the astral charts
To find a god to die in.
It’s only sometimes that I remember

We hope you have enjoyed reading this week’s selection. Each week we select a poem from one of our members which we feel is a wonderful read. It is the poetry penned by our members and their willingness to share that is the core of our community. If you enjoyed reading this poem we can guarantee there will be many more like it so be sure to stop by next week and read the poem that has been selected for your reading pleasure.

We hope that each of you will spend a bit of time each day reading some of the terrific poetry written by our poets and enjoying our community.

For Poets United, by Mary Kling, author of the blog In the Corner of My Eye.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Blog of the Week - Magic in the Backyard (8 August, 2011)

At Poets United we are all about our community. so please take the time support your fellow poets by visiting our Blog of the Week.

This week our blog of the week is



                                                  Magic in the Backyard

by  Kellie Elmore from East Tennessee, USA.

Some poems I'd like to highlight  from Kellie's blog are:

These Times are Too Few

Paper Hearts

Thanks, Kellie, for being part of our community!  We appreciate you and your contributions and your participation..

Every week Poets United tries to introduce our members and readers to a poet and poetry blog found  in our community.  We would love to hear your comments on this poet’s blog and poetry; so please come back after visiting the blog of the week and let us know your thoughts.  I am sure the poet would also like to read comments on her poems.

We hope you enjoy visiting the highlighted blogs each week. Thank you for supporting your fellow poets with positive comments here and everywhere on Poets United.  You may soon see your blog highlighted here.

This blog was chosen by Mary Kling (who hangs out at  In the Corner of My Eye) for Poets United.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Poetry Pantry Is Now Open! - #61



The Poetry Pantry
2nd Chance Poems or 1st time shares

Anything goes!! All Poems, all Poets, All Week!!

Do you have a poem you would like to share? Something that you just felt inspired to write and want others to read. Perhaps it’s a poem that didn’t get as much exposure on your blog as you would have liked. Maybe it’s a poem that you wrote a long time ago that you would like people to revisit. That’s what this section of Poets United is for.

Each Sunday we start a new post with a New Mr. Linky for you. This is so that you can post a link to anything you want us to read, anything at all related to poetry or prose found on your own poetry blogs. It will remain open all week so that you can show us your writings and thoughts. You can post links weekly should you chose to do so. What poetry you put here is up to you so don't be afraid to share with us!!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Classic Poetry-The Sea View by Charlotte Smith








The Sea View
The upland shepherd, as reclined he lies
On the soft turf that clothes the mountain brow,
Marks the bright sea-line mingling with the skies;
Or from his course celestial sinking low
The summer sun in purple radiance glow
Blaze on the western waters; the wide scene
Magnificent and tranquil seems to spread
Even over the rustic's breast a joy serene,
When, like dark plague-spots by the demons shed,
Charged deep with death, upon the waves far seen
Move the war-freighted ships; and fierce and red
Flash their destructive fires--The mangled dead
And dying victims then pollute the flood.
Ah! thus man spoils glorious works with blood!
1797









Charlotte Turner Smith (1749-1806) was an English poet and novelist whose works have been credited with influencing Jane Austen and particularly Charles Dickens. As a poet, she is a Romantic; as a novelist, she falls into no particular pigeon-hole, but is in some respects Gothic. Smith is also very much interested in social conditions (the influence on Dickens is clear here) and in politics -- specifically the French Revolution. Born into a well-to-do family, Charlotte Turner Smith was brought up in South England. At the early age of fourteen, she was married to Benjamin Smith, the son of a wealthy East Indian merchant. However, his wealth did not last and in 1783 Charlotte shared his imprisonment for debts with him for several months. At that time she decided to publish some of her poems to support her ever increasing family. The volume "Elegiac Poems" of 1784 was an instant success. Charlotte put down her thoughts the form of sonnet, a form which since Shakespeare's days had come out of use. Her poetry, famous for its melancholy and sadness, became highly popular in the following years.










Friday, August 5, 2011

I Wish I'd Written This

A dedicated poet with her own unique style and cool rhyming.  This is a good example of her work.

By Kay Ryan

Who would be a turtle who could help it?
A barely mobile hard roll, a four-oared helmet,
she can ill afford the chances she must take
in rowing toward the grasses that she eats.
Her track is graceless, like dragging
a packing-case places, and almost any slope
defeats her modest hopes. Even being practical,
she's often stuck up to the axle on her way
to something edible. With everything optimal,
she skirts the ditch which would convert
her shell into a serving dish. She lives
below luck-level, never imagining some lottery
will change her load of pottery to wings.
Her only levity is patience,
the sport of truly chastened things.
 
"Turtle" from Flamingo Watching © 1994 by Kay Ryan.















Click on the title to go to poetryfoundation.org's posting of Turtle and listen to Kay Ryan read it herself.  Click on the poet's name to learn more about Kay Ryan.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Thursday Think Tank #60 - Market Days


I was at the Farmer’s Market the other day; I love to go there. The one I frequent has a time worn feel. What do you think of when you go to your local produce stand, what catches your eye, perhaps you grow your own produce?

What do you love, watermelon, ripe berries, or cooking with fresh produce? Do you have fond memories attached to gardening? What comes to mind, when you wander in, the colors, the aroma of fresh berries, or do you enjoy the art of arrangement, the shapes all lined up in rows. Do you thump the melons, search for the right ingredients for a stir-fry, or just gather your summer favorites? One summer I picked and sorted blueberries, till my eyes turned blue ; D

In your mind’s eye visit the Farmer’s Market and see what tantalizes your taste buds. Whet our appetites with your delicious poems!

~ Ella

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Life of a Poet - Peggy Goetz

Kids, I have a wonderful read for you today. From the time I first saw Peggy Goetz’s Africa Unfinished site, and her glorious photos of the time she spent in Africa, I have had her in mind for an interview. And today’s the day! Yippee!…….Africa………..pour something cold and delicious, with ice cubes, and let’s dive in! You’ll find Peggy, on any given day, at On A Day Like Today!! And she lives an extremely interesting life.


Poets United: Peggy, so nice of you to agree to this interview - especially as you are traveling while we're conducting it! Would you like to tell us a bit about your life?

[Peggy, "trying not to be too serious about these photos!"]

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Poem of the Week - Priorities (Sadly Waiting for Recess)

Poets United is all about Community.  We wish to celebrate and acknowledge individual poets who are part of our group.  This week's poem of the week  is Priorities which is written by  Mr. Walker, a teacher, father, husband and poet from San Bruno California who shares his poetry on  Sadly Waiting for Recess .

Priorities can be found within his blog:


Priorities

it's difficult sometimes
to know if what I do
is aligned with my priorities

life is erratic
like it's charting a course for me
that doesn't seem guided
by fate or design

I look for omens
signs to show me
that I'm doing the right things

even the occasional bad omen would be okay
something to fight against
an obstacle giving me
a short-term goal to focus on
something to measure myself by

but the fact is I don't believe in omens
signs from above or below
what's here and now
in the middle matters

teaching young people
writing poems
making my small portion
of this erratic life
brighter and more beautiful

at least I think so
that's the question I started with
isn't it?

but then I look
at my boys
and see what is reflected
in their luminous eyes

and everything seems
true and good
what I know
and what I do
the things that are me
appear congruent

and I wonder
why I question myself at all

I should take that
as a good omen

~ Mr Walker

I also felt I needed to include the next poem "With our Families" because it really kind of called to me.  I liked it's simplicity and how it mixed with a ringing twist of truth and importance.  For me a it started a river of memories and a poem that can do that with so few words has to be good.

With Our Families

while swimming at the pond all day
the three other men left
for a drink at a nearby bar

I would have said "no thank you"
but I still would've liked
to have been asked

~ Mr Walker


We hope you have enjoyed reading this week’s selection. Each week we select a poem from one of our members which we feel is a wonderful read. It is the poetry penned by our members and their willingness to share that is the core of our community. If you enjoyed reading this poem we can guarantee there will be many more like it so be sure to stop by next week and read the poem that has been selected for your reading pleasure.We hope that each of you will spend a bit of time each day reading some of the terrific poetry written by our poets.  It's all about community!