Daily Archives: April 22, 2012

A Challenge from Hayley

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Hayley G. Hoover, one of my favorite YouTubers, posted a poetry writing prompt on her blog:

“In your poem, include at least fourteen of the following items: a statistic, a dish eaten cold, three forms of heat, a smell you can’t forget, a line from a movie, something out of a textbook, two things you wish you had said, a reference to an aunt or uncle, some kind of moving vehicle, two words beginning with R and ending with “-ion”, a stage direction, two distinct hours of the day, an historical figure, an adhesive, an animal only seen up close in the zoo, a slang expression (“call it quits,” for example), something really bad that you did, something that undermines or negates everything else you’ve said.”

I managed to fit all the items in. Here’s my poem

“Here’s looking at you, kid” he said

Toasting success to the best- the two of us.

And I didn’t respond, despondent silence

Louder than any shout, I hesitated.

I should have spoken, said something

Bring my congratulations to the surface

instead of mirthless fear but I didn’t.

I should’ve said “To us!” “Mazel tov!”

“I love you,” true every one. I said nothing.

 

Pungent, like fish weeks past their prime,

he stared at me, the world a train moving

Removing any distance between us

As I ate an 8 o’clock spaghetti at midnight,

Cold in a way no microwave or stove could restore,

Fiery glances passed between us, like a gust

Of death, come to cheer up the evening

that had begun so well, now gone bananas.

 

FDR said fear fears itself. I disagree

Revelation of reintegration between words and mouth

brought out this response: “Let us digress

to a non-relative discussion, percussion

Reverberation of static and non-static existence.”

I feared myself, my heart

No uncle, cousin, sister brother, father,

mother- dearer was he and I said

Nothing. And I was 72% sure I loved you.

 

End scene, drop the curtain down

Drown out the sorrowful glance of rhino

Behind glass at the zoo, so close

I could reach out and touch it, if it were real.

Reality gone haywire, clinging like duct tape,

Absorbing everything. I take it back,

it’s better I stay silent, reliant quiet

in face of the tangles of the unrealities

Unraveling in my head. Better to say nothing.

 

 

Hope you enjoyed! Any comments, questions, or critics are appreciated.

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