OK, I’m not even gonna whine about procrastinating this month. July and August are filled with so many wonderful things…in the long run. In the short run, I’m overwhelmed. So it is what it is. This month, we Poetry Princesses wrote poems in the style of Kay Ryan poems. Someone shared her poem “Turtle.”
I only have one Kay Ryan collection, but I so admire her pithiness and the way she uses sound and rhyme so fantastically and originally. Since I write a lot of rhyming verse, I both connect with her style and struggle with it when trying to let it inform my own writing. Must read more of her work!
My poem was also inspired by real life and by a 15 Words or Less poem that Pamela Ross wrote, inspired by a photo I took while my husband and I were out playing Scrabble during a showing of our house (which finally sold!).
[Addendum: Don’t worry–I am not feeling like the house. For although this house has certainly had lots of good times in it, I am not at all sad to be moving! So, please don’t be sad for me. I just took on the persona in my mind of how it would feel to be the house. But I, as the owner, am really kicking my heels up and happy to be moving on to the next adventure!]
House for Sale
Who would be a house for sale who could help it?
A lame duck, a skeleton in the dust of a moving truck,
she can ill afford the heat that keeps the weeds
growing, seeds sown before this season of leaving.
Her tears flow from the sump pump, like spring rains
born in the basement of her heart.
Even being practical, she knows she is mostly
“no”s—no granite countertops, no polished concrete floors,
no theater room, no chance, no second glance, no offer.
Parked on the curb, she watches a parade of glazed eyes
and sighs and there goes another day.
Her only optimism is the hope of the outgrown and rejected.
Patiently in the waiting room, she prays for
someone handy with a hammer and suture,
who will sew up her future with a brand new family,
and mend her worn, weathered heart.
–Laura Purdie Salas, all rights reserved
Some of the other Poetry 7 did much more in-depth studying of Kay Ryan, reading interviews with her, studying other poems. I feel just like someone doing impersonations with my shallow take. But I’m just thinking of it as a response to a particular mentor poem :>)
I did have fun, though, analyzing her “Turtle” and then using the same tool to analyze my draft. Have you guys seen the WSJ article about Hamilton that has the rhyme analyzer tool in it?
Here are the three parts of Ryan’s original poem run through the analyzer:
And here are the parts of mine run through it.
I haven’t spent a ton of time (OK, any time) analyzing these, but I just love how you can see what the WSJ tool points out as “rhyming” or at least near-rhyming syllables. It’s a sort of sound diagram that I’ve written about before. As a revision tool, I want to use this more often. This online tool isn’t perfect–it both misses some stuff and links some stuff that to my ear does not sound at all alike–but, boy, what a luxury to have it do it for you–and so quickly. Not for traditional rhyming manuscripts, but for every poem or manuscript I’m just trying to give richer sound to! Here’s hoping WSJ doesn’t take it offline anytime soon. :>)
Now, please don’t miss the awesome poems of my sisters:
And here are the previous Poetry Sisters collaborations:
|Jun 2016||Harpy poems|
|Apr 2016||“Channel-Hopping Through Grasshopper Reality TV”|
|Feb 2016||Poem Inspired by a Picasso Sculpture (ugh)|
|Jan 2016||Crown sonnet (on the periodic table)|
|Nov 2015||Ekphrastic poems|
|Sep 2015||Found poems|
|Aug 2015||Classified haiku|
|Jul 2015||Inspired by e.e. cummings’ poems|
|Mar 2015||Sestinas (Lord have mercy)|
|Feb 2015||Villanelles on hidden things|
|Jan 2015||Triolets on beginnings (And I posted an extra one here.)|
|Pre-2015||Villanelles, a crown sonnet, rondeau redoubles, and pantoums|
For more poetry fun, don’t miss the Poetry Friday Roundup, hosted this week by…hmmm, I don’t actually know! Oh, it’s Tabatha Yeatts, who has one of the best blog names ever, The Opposite of Indifference.