Day 8: Drawer, Ode, Apostophe

I struggled initially with the idea of being able to tie a drawer into the Ode and Apostrophe. Then I came up with my offering below. I hope I used all the parts correctly so that I know I would have this form and device in my arsenal.

Letter from my Wife

In a drawer beside my bed
lies a letter I’ve often read
From my wife before we were wed
her words touch my heart
Oh Love, how do I even start?
To reply to your beautiful words


Day 7: Fingers, Prose, Assonance – Writing

I am not sure how I feel about prose, but I definitely feel like assonance is a useful tool in my poetry writing kit. Thinking about the example they gave (Eminem’s Lose Yourself) I thought I could use my love of writing as the subject of my attempt at Prose and Assonance. Maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t.


The flow of words won’t stop as the tide
rises to crash and smash over
the page. Keys clicking as in a rage
making a splash upon the screen.
No time to wait there is no
debate. Fingers falling behind
can’t stem the mind when it demands
them to spew out line after
line dragging me along for the
ride of my life.

The Ballad of Pippin the Red

Writing 201: Hero(ine), Ballad, Anaphora/Epistrophe

So, I was a little stumped at first with this one. Sure, I have written High Fantasy and I am a huge fan of 80’s hair bands, so the concept of a hero(ine) and a ballad did not stop my gears from turning. The subject of my ballad is what I was stumped on. Then, while browsing facebook, I came upon a post by a good friend of mine from high school. He participates in SCA, which for those who don’t know are the people who dress up like medieval warriors and hold jousts. LOTS OF FUN, trust me. well, he had finally been granted his coat of arms and name registration. Pippin the Red. Now, hold that thought in your mind. A medieval warrior, glad in armor named Pippin the Red. Got it? Ok. His colors are white and green. So how is he “the Red” you ask, well, that is a great story. With his permission I have been allowed to tell it for the purposes of explaining my poem.

Pippin is a modest warrior off the field. There was a bellydancer at one of the tournaments who felt his pointedly not staring at her was rude, so she proceeded to dance closer and closer to Pippin. Every step closer all could see the blush of red creep from his ears and neck to cover his entire face in scarlet. So, he was dubbed Pippin the Red.

The Ballad of Pippin the Red

They call him Pippin the Red
Armor of green and white is Pippin the Red
The tavern wench leans close to pour his drink
Left with a face of scarlet is Pippin the Red

Valiant in battle is Pippin the Red
With sword and shield fights Pippin the Red
A Spear or axe he can best his foes
No one can stand against Pippin the Red

Riding at the head of his army is Pippin the Red
Banner flying proudly for Pippin the Red
His men all loyal to the bloody end
No one can stand against Pippin the Red

They call him Pippin the Red
Armor of green and white is Pippin the Red
The tavern wench leans close to pour his drink
Left with a face of scarlet is Pippin the Red

Victorious on the field is Pippin the Red
“To the Tavern” cries Pippin the Red
His men hide their snickers well
His ultimate foe awaits Pippin the Red

He enters the tavern does Pippin the Red
“Drinks are on me” yells Pippin the Red
Golden spoils of war spill from his pouch
The servers approach Pippin the Red

They call him Pippin the Red
Armor of green and white is Pippin the Red
The tavern wench leans close to pour his drink
Left with a face of scarlet is Pippin the Red

Blue eyed Allison leans in to offer him cheese
Green eyed Laurie leans in to offer him mutton
Brown eyed Kelsey leans in to offer him fruit
Marla leans in real close to pour his mead
With each offering to Pippin the Red
Sweat forms on the brow of Pippin the Red
His men cheer their leader on
He proudly wears the reason he is Pippin the Red

They call him Pippin the Red
Armor of green and white is Pippin the Red
The tavern wench leans close to pour his drink
Left with a face of scarlet is Pippin the Red

Writing 201: Poetry Potluck

I was out of town this weekend so I had to do my Poetry Potluck this morning. I chose Alfred Lord Tennyson’s “The Charge of the Light Brigade” because of my middle school English class. One of our projects in 8th grade English was to memorize something from literature. There were soliloquies and monologues, the Preamble to the Constitution, and several poems. They were all ranked by difficulty. They were all worth a 100 if you got it perfect, but the longer pieces were a little more forgiving if you flubbed a word or two. I chose “The Charge of the Light Brigade” as it was in the middle as far as length and didn’t look too difficult. I also love the lines, “Theirs not to make reply, Theirs not to reason why, Theirs but to do and die”. Sometimes life is like that. You don’t get to make a reply or ask why. you simply roll up your sleeves and soldier on. I copied the poem below for reference and for those who may not remember it as well as I do. I can proudly say I aced the assignment.

The Charge of the Light Brigade

Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
“Forward, the Light Brigade!
“Charge for the guns!” he said:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.

“Forward, the Light Brigade!”
Was there a man dismay’d?
Not tho’ the soldier knew
Someone had blunder’d:
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley’d and thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of Hell
Rode the six hundred.

Flash’d all their sabres bare,
Flash’d as they turn’d in air,
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army, while
All the world wonder’d:
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right thro’ the line they broke;
Cossack and Russian
Reel’d from the sabre stroke
Shatter’d and sunder’d.
Then they rode back, but not
Not the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
Volley’d and thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro’ the jaws of Death
Back from the mouth of Hell,
All that was left of them,
Left of six hundred.

When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
All the world wondered.
Honour the charge they made,
Honour the Light Brigade,
Noble six hundred.

Writing 201: Fog, Elegy, Metaphor

Well, I started off with a desire to use all three again from today’s assignment. Somehow, once I started writing, the fog was lifted from my mind and disappeared into who knows where. However, I discovered that a previous style crept back in like a rolling fog across the moors (ok, was that cliche enough?) Anyway, Here is what I came up with. I suppose when the fog clouds my perceptions again, I will be able to more clearly stay on prompt. (oh wait, I found the fog, just not where I expected to when I started writing.)

That morning was a cold grave
Oh the sun shined and birds sang
Their voices drummed on my ears
All that once made bright
Lost in the dark of night
Looking for that glimmer of hope
Yet is is nowhere to be found
Cursing the path fate wove
Rushing headlong with misted glasses
Understanding escaping like tears from my eyes
She’s gone forever
Her smile concrete on her face
Exactly as in life
Death mocks me

The idea of an elegy made me think about my grandmother who I lost a few years ago. Her birthday was Valentines day, (hence the previous post Bittersweet Valentine’s Day).  Seems I come back to that event over and over. I think i have a half dozen poems not posted on here that in someway relate to her.  Sorry for getting sentimental on you there readers. Hope you enjoy. And 10 points to the person who finds the previous style that ended up getting reused. 🙂

Writing 201: Trust, Acrostic, Internal Rhyme

Trust, that idea of having faith in someone or something. We all have to trust in something or someone during the course of our life. It is, in my humble opinion, a basic human need. We search and strive to find something worthy of our trust. Some find it in people, others in religion, sometimes both. Some cling to an ideal or philosophical train of thought. Either way, trust is something that gives us hope and light in the darkest times of our lives. Without it, there is a whole lot more darkness out there waiting to greet us.

Trust me, he says
Racing heart and thoughts
Useless excuses
Still your tongue
Trust so hard to earn
Making you doubt him
Everything about him
Faith that was lost
Restored by his efforts
Insistent in his pursuit
Earning your trust slowly
Now you feel as he does
Dedicated to each other

Writing 201: Animal, Concrete, Enjambment

So, the prompt is to use an animal in some way. I am not sure about the Concrete and Enjambment part of this task, but I gave it a shot. At the end you will know what the animal is, but hopefully it will actually look like what it is supposed to.

I see
Ahead of me
Up in the clouds above
A shape to            bring fear
To those far           and near. If
You look close and you will see it
too.  Wings so wide and red as fire.
Can’t you see it?
Danger above
Burning barns below as it passes.
A winged wonder with wicked claws.
Tearing, ripping,piercing
The plight of a knight’s
nightmare. A fire-breathing
menace. A Dragon…

Well, i was going for a dragon with an open mouth. Not sure if it looks like anything.

Writing 201: Journey, Limerick, Alliteration

A journey can be many things. Sometimes a journey of the mind can be as dangerous as facing a raging river rapids. Haha, See what I did there, just a bit of alliteration to whet your appetite. The greatest journey of all, is Life.

River running round the bend
Where of where does it end
Flowing so fast
The trees fly past
Into a blur they do blend

Fingers flit from tiller to oar
Is this it, No there is much more
This journey of sorts
Shaking in my shorts
The water chills me to my core

Time the enemy
Pushes us all as it likes
No mercy at all

Live, Love, Laugh like no ones looking
Watch the direction your life is going
Seize the day
In every way
So there’s no regrets on your last morning

Writing 201: Water, Haikus, Simile, Tanka

So, Writing 201 starts with a bang and a “squish”? (checks for water in my shoes) Nope, all good. Back to topic here. Prompt was Water, Form Haiku (or Tanka if you are feeling saucy), and Device of Simile. After a few moments, the below work of poetic verse flowed from my mind, into my hand to be added to my handwritten book. Retyped here for your enjoyment, because seriously, who is going to read my handwriting? Not even my wife can most days.

Watery Mind

My mind like water
Sometimes clear, sometimes murky
Calm or Hurricane

Gentle river flow
Into rapids filled with rocks
Drop over the falls
Ideas cascading down
The blank canvas of my mind

Sorting them all out
Is the great journey of life
We all must travel

Stress (Commentary and Poetic verse)

Stress. Funny how that word conjures up images of anxiety ridden individuals breaking down. Some lash out violently, raging against the ethereal force, or actual forces bringing out the stressful condition. Others lose all will and lie broken upon their beds. Others thrive on it, drink it in like nectar from some unmerciful god. Regardless of how you feel about Stress, it is certainly a topic often discussed the world over.

My day job as a logistical wizard at a fuel hauling company (aka Dispatcher for those that don’t get my joke), can alternate from stressful to almost boring to the point of tears. When equipment breaks down, drivers come up with attitudes about the smallest of things, or customers with unreasonable demands because they simply do not understand how to order fuel for a station they probably shouldn’t own in the first place; things can get tense. The blood starts to course faster in your veins as adrenaline pumps into the stream. Nerves start firing faster in your brain, snap decisions come to you as you solve the problems of the day.

Once the momentary crisis is over however, there is a noticeable drop in energy levels as everything slows down. This let down can lead to feelings of relief, or feelings of self doubt. “Did I make the right call? That seemed to go very smoothly, maybe I should double check my math.” This can lead to a spiraling back up. Those are the moments when you have to take a breath and trust in your knowledge and skills. Sometimes the jolt of adrenaline brought on by stress will last for hours, leading to a state of extreme mental tiredness at the end of the day. Those are the days I want to just go home, kiss my wife, hug my son, and crack open something with alcohol to drink before going to sleep.

A simple five letter word
Silly as three are the same
Chaos bringer to our world
Losing to it brings such shame

It can make you stronger
It can make you weak
Stress enough to make you weep
Or grit your teeth and push longer

Keep your chin above the rising tide
Let it roll from your shoulders son
You can beat i if you don’t hide
You will look back and say “I won!”