Friday, November 20, 2015

Thankful Poetry Friday

Thanksgiving dinner at my house this year is going to be a quiet affair. I'm looking forward to a simple holiday this year, grateful that my in-laws are still part of my life, grateful that my youngest daughter is living in the same town with me, grateful for my dear hubby. Last week he told me I was the greatest blessing of his life. What a sweet man. So my Thanksgiving poem is for him.

I've been experimenting with a few traditional poetry forms this week. I tried my hand at linked sonnets, but that effort is not printable at the moment. Poetry forms can be maddening sometimes. Playing with them, forcing my words to conform to meter and rhyme often distills the thought process, even if I throw out the form and keep what's left. That's what happened as I tried Tricia's Terzanelle poetry stretch. It was definitely a stretch, and still not especially skillful, but I like the result. I kept the pattern, but threw out the rhyme.


for the late rose
blushing red
against my cheek

for the sunset
masked by clouds
blushing red

for the first hesitant
blink of starlight
masked by clouds

for the barred owl
startled by
blink of starlight

for the fog
your warm breath
startled by

the night sky
for the late rose
your warm breath
against my cheek

© Doraine Bennett 2015

Tricia hosts the Poetry Friday roundup today at Miss Rumphius Effect.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Wild about Antarctica!

Today I'm celebrating with dear friend, Irene Latham, on her ten year anniversary in the blogosphere. Irene has inspired me, challenged me, and entertained me for many of these ten years at Live Your Poem, where she does exactly that!

Many of us in the Kidslitosphere begin January with "One Little Word" for the year. I'm not sure, but this may have been Irene's invention, too. Irene's word for 2015 is WILD. You can see her post here, along with a pretty wild picture of the wild little girl she was. It's only appropriate that she has invited those of us who know and love her to be wild with her today. 

Here is my take on the topic. I'm still stuck in Antarctica, definitely a wild place. Cape Denison, the home base of Australian explorer Douglas Mawson, is the windiest place on earth. Katabatic winds blow down the surface of the Antarctic ice cap, pulled by gravity, gathering snow, until they reach hurricane speeds. These rivers of icy wind can blow for days. Explorers of old and research scientists of today can only sit and wait for the winds to cease. 

The poem below is a mask, or persona poem, written in the voice of the wind. Stop by Irene's blog where she is rounding up all of today's wild celebration posts. Happy Anniversary, Irene!

Katabatic winds at Cape Denison, Antartica. Photograph by Frank Hurley, 1912

Wind Warning

Set no foot here
or suffer violence.
This shore belongs to me.

A blizzard of rage,unbridled,
I plunge down ice. I plow
the snow, slam walls of white

against your face—a maelstrom,
uncontrolled. My raging
blast demands retreat.

A knife of driven air,
my wild banshee scream
prophesies despair.

© Doraine Bennett 2015

Friday, October 30, 2015

O October!

Photo by Wildcat Dunny

I love this quote from Rainbow Rowell's book, Attachments. I heard it read recently in a yoga class and went in search of the source. Rowell is the author of Eleanor and Park and Fan Girl. Attachments was her first novel. I've added it to my "want to read" pile.

I'm taking liberties with the lines, making it a found poem. It should really be a poem!

baptize me with leaves!
Swaddle me in corduroy
and nurse me with split pea soup. 

tuck tiny candy bars 
in my pockets and
carve my smile
into a thousand pumpkins.

O autumn!
O teakettle!
O grace!

Happy Autumn! I've been out of town and out of town and out of town. Now I'm writing and writing and writing. So if you've read this elsewhere lately, well, enjoy it again. Stop by A Year of Reading where Mary Lee is hosting the roundup. 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Poetry Friday: Talking with Light

What Does Light Talk About?
by St. Thomas Aquinas

When you recognize her beauty,
the eye applauds, the heart stands in an ovation,

and the tongue when she is near
is on its best behavior,

it speaks more like light.

What does light talk about?
I asked a plant that once,

It said, "I am not sure,
but it makes me

My response to the recent challenge -- Write a Me poem.


We lie in grass
thick as August
cradled between
our two homes--
one summer blue,
one gray with age--
and watch while clouds
hurl in circles
slowly settling
into shapes
only we
can see.

© Doraine Bennett 2015

Happy Poetry Friday. Lift your face to the light and grow.

Visit Michelle at Today's Little Ditty for the roundup.

Friday, September 4, 2015

First Yoga Lesson

I brought home a stack of books from the library last week, a stack so tall I pinched the skin of my arm somewhere in the middle of the pile. Ouch! But a mostly lovely day of reading. (I won't mention the one I wanted to throw across the room.) Ouch!

This one was one of my favorites. I have always loved Mary Oliver's poetry, but this book was like having a conversation with the poet. It is a beautiful book that you should read, even if it pinches your skin. 

I love this poem from the book. These excerpts are from the beginning and the end. Click here to hear Garrison Keilor read the entire poem on The Writer's Almanac.

Photo courtesy PDPics

from First Yoga Lesson
by Mary Oliver

"Be a lotus in the pond," she said, "opening

"Feel your quadriceps stretching?" she asked.
Well, something was certainly stretching

I lay on the floor, exhausted.
But to be a lotus in the pond
opening slowly, and very slowly rising--
that I could do.

Wishing you moments of slow, gentle opening, rising, being.

Be sure to visit Linda at TeacherDance for today's roundup.

Friday, August 14, 2015

A Frog Poem

The frogs are still singing. Still hot around here for a while longer.

The Frog
by Hillaire Belloc

Be kind and tender to the Frog,
And do not call him names,
As "Slimy-skin," or "Polly-wog,"
or likewise, "Uncle James,"

Or "Gape-a-grin,' or Toad-gone-wrong,"
or "Billy Bandy-knees":
The frog is justly sensitive
To epithets like these.

No animal will more repay
A treatment kind and fair,
At least so lonely people say
Who keep a Frog (and, by the way,
They are extremely rare).

Heidi hosts Poetry Friday at my juicy little universe.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Poetry of the Body

File:A ship at night Wellcome L0049053.jpg

 I stumbled upon this poem in a Rodney Yee book, called Poetry of the Body, purchased for one dollar at the Friends of the Library book sale last weekend. Some days are delightful in their convergence.

Once Only almost at the equator almost at the equinox exactly at midnight from a ship the full moon in the center of the sky.
Gary Snyder
Sappa Creek near Singapore
March 1958

Ardha Chandrasana, officially it's only "half moon pose," and this is definitely modified, but still such fun.

May all the things you love converge today!

Tabatha Yeatts hosts Poetry Friday at The Opposite of Indifference.