Thursday, January 26, 2006

In Stitches *

I am in the choice of pattern
and in my fantasy
of how the suit sketched in tweed
will be incarnated in velvet.

I am in the tissue pieces
laid precisely, pinned snugly
facing the right way
on the wrong side.

I am in the concentration of my tongue
and in the rhythm of my heart
as scissor blades
crunch, crunch, crunch.

I am in the synapses that pass
from instruction sheet to brain
to fingers, in spaces
filled with the conductive medium of faith.

I am on the rolling highway of stitches, even and perfect
seams, smooth and straight
then in the pin-prick that sees
something is wrong: I must rip and return.

I am in the mirror
reflecting shoulders that bag
a waist too tight
and a skirt that sags

Then at last, after being in gathers, easements
overcast hems and under the hot iron
I am, snug and snazzy,
in this garment I have made.

© 2006 - V. Nesdoly


*My response to the current prompt at Poets Online:

This month's prompt is to write of an occasion when you were "in the moment" completely. We often hear of this from musicians, artists, athletes - but it occurs often enough for all of us, if only for that moment, in our everyday lives.
I guess mine is really be a compilation of moments – oh well...

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Prompts at Poets Online

One of my favorite places for poetry prompts over the years has been Poets Online. Their ‘current prompt’ is updated about once a month and is always a challenge.

An interesting aspect of their web prompt is the invitation to send in poems written from the current prompt. About a week to ten days after the submission deadline a page, with the prompt along with the poems chosen for publication, is posted as 'Read the Newest Poems." These are eventually relegated to their place in the "Archives."

The current prompt is here. Last date for submission is a week from today - January 28th. Am I up for it? Are you?

At last

I’m opening my poetry blog! I’ve wanted to do this for a long time now, but it seemed there was always something in the way. Finally this morning, on waking I decided this is the day.

So, what kind of a blog will this be?

First of all, its primary focus will be poetry. This is because I want a place where I can post my strangest writings, talk unapologetically about all things poetic and not feel I’m turning off the bulk of the people who come to promptings expecting to read prose (Poetry? Eeeuw. How pretentious! How weird!).

Second, I’m talking primarily modern poetry, not the classics of the past.

I'm calling it “Line upon line” because that is the name of the poetry column I have just begun to write for FellowScript. I like the baggage that phrase brings with it – coming, as it does, from the Bible and all – Isaiah 28 to be precise. Here it is in context:

“Whom will he teach knowledge?
And whom will he make to understand the message?
Those just weaned from milk?
Those just drawn from the breasts?
For precept must be upon precept,
precept upon precept,
Line upon line, line upon line,
Here a little, there a little.”

Though the ‘line upon line’ in the quote implies teaching, I don’t intend its use here to lead to the conclusion that I take the writing and reading of poetry as primarily educational. I do know, however, that though I have no intention of writing poems that are tools for Christian teaching or propaganda, because poetry reflects the worldview of its creator, many of my poems will contain Christian themes. For that I do not apologize; it is who I am.

Here are some of the things I will be posting in this blog:

1. Poems written by me.

2. Poems written by others, posted in their entirety if I have permission of the writer or the writing is old enough that the copyright has lapsed, otherwise links.

3. Poetry prompts. I have found that I need reachable goals or challenges to keep me writing. For that I like writing prompts. And so here I’ll be posting links to prompts or making up prompts of my own, and challenging myself (and any who read and want to join in) to write from them. I include in this department, taking part in poetry blog events which often have a theme or subject.

4. Articles and news items about poets and poetry.

5. A heads-up about poetry contests and publishing opportunities.

6. Reviews of poetry books.

So (big breath....) shall we begin?