Some more really bad poetry by me


The wiggle, waddle

The excitement of your life!

You cannot stand still

Sluggish morning

Pouring myself in

Fitting into the crevices

Of the morning flow


Rain on he window

Steam rising from my tea cup

the scent of warm leaves

mingled with sweet, strong spices

warm hands, even in the cold

Color on My Lips

A little color on my lips

and I’m ready, now, to go

With a gentle swing to my hips

A little color on my lips

for comfort and courage to sew

to face the world with a glow

A little color on my lips

And I’m ready, now, to go

Writing Prompt Saturday, Write an Ghazal Poem

Four days until a really awesome announcement

Yet another really obscure poetry form, ghazal poetry is going to be my new favorite thing for awhile. For one thing, it’s all about couplets, which means that it is twitter friendly.

So, a ghazal poem is at least five couplets, traditionally no more than fifteen. The first couplet should end with a refrain that will finish each couplet.

Traditionally, ghazal poetry was very melancholic. So if you’ve been getting the stupid amount of rain I have, it’s great.

Here is a example of ghazal poetry.

“Even the Rain” By Agha Shahid Ali

What will suffice for a true-love knot? Even the rain?
But he has bought grief’s lottery, bought even the rain.

“our glosses / wanting in this world” “Can you remember?”
Anyone! “when we thought / the poets taught” even the

After we died—That was it!—God left us in the dark.
And as we forgot the dark, we forgot even the rain.

Drought was over. Where was I? Drinks were on the house.
For mixers, my love, you’d poured—what?—even the rain.

For all of us in the states, hope you’re having a great fourth. We are blowing things up and grilling greasy meat here. How about you?

Writing Prompt Saturday, Write a Sestina

We do love our poetry here at Paper Beats World, even if I can’t write it very well.

This week’s new form I bet you’ve never heard of is the sestina.  A sestina poem is a fixed verse form consisting of six stanzas of six lines each, normally followed by a three-line envoi. The words that end each line of the first stanza are used as line endings in each of the following stanzas, rotated in a set pattern. (Curtsey of Wikipedia.)  Since that didn’t mean a lot to me when I read it, here’s an example of what I mean.

This is by Elizabeth Bishop, and try as I might, I couldn’t find a title.

September rain falls on the house.
In the failing light, the old grandmother
sits in the kitchen with the child
beside the Little Marvel Stove,
reading the jokes from the almanac,
laughing and talking to hide her tears.

She thinks that her equinoctial tears
and the rain that beats on the roof of the house
were both foretold by the almanac,
but only known to a grandmother.
The iron kettle sings on the stove.
She cuts some bread and says to the child,

It’s time for tea now; but the child
is watching the teakettle’s small hard tears
dance like mad on the hot black stove,
the way the rain must dance on the house.
Tidying up, the old grandmother
hangs up the clever almanac

on its string. Birdlike, the almanac
hovers half open above the child,
hovers above the old grandmother
and her teacup full of dark brown tears.
She shivers and says she thinks the house
feels chilly, and puts more wood in the stove.

It was to be, says the Marvel Stove.
I know what I know, says the almanac.
With crayons the child draws a rigid house
and a winding pathway. Then the child
puts in a man with buttons like tears
and shows it proudly to the grandmother.

But secretly, while the grandmother
busies herself about the stove,
the little moons fall down like tears
from between the pages of the almanac
into the flower bed the child
has carefully placed in the front of the house.

Time to plant tears, says the almanac.
The grandmother sings to the marvelous stove
and the child draws another inscrutable house.

Writing Prompt Saturday, Write a Epistle poem

I’m noticing a theme with poetry.  The different forms all have these lovely complicated names that give you no idea of what they’re actually for.  Why is that?  Personally, I think poets are just trying to punk us.  Epistle poetry is a great example, because it just means a poem in the form of a letter.

Epistle poetry comes from the Roman Empire, and was made popular by Horace.  Many are intimate, sent to one person, and are often love letters.  But I found this really great one by Elizabeth Bishop that just caught me by surprise.

Letter to N.Y.
For Louise Crane

In your next letter I wish you’d say
where you are going and what you are doing;
how are the plays, and after the plays
what other pleasures you’re pursuing:

taking cabs in the middle of the night,
driving as if to save your soul
where the road goes round and round the park
and the meter glares like a moral owl,

and the trees look so queer and green
standing alone in big black caves
and suddenly you’re in a different place
where everything seems to happen in waves,

and most of the jokes you just can’t catch,
like dirty words rubbed off a slate,
and the songs are loud but somehow dim
and it gets so terribly late,

and coming out of the brownstone house
to the gray sidewalk, the watered street,
one side of the buildings rises with the sun
like a glistening field of wheat.

—Wheat, not oats, dear. I’m afraid
if it’s wheat it’s none of your sowing,
nevertheless I’d like to know
what you are doing and where you are going.

I love the beat of this poem.  The subject matter seems to say, without saying, that she wishes Louise would come home, and that she’s not sure she’s safe there in New York, as it seems a very foreign place to her.

So this week, try writing an epistal poem.

Writing Prompt Saturday, Write a Ekphrasis Poem

Here again, we come to what has to be my favorite post, and I think it’s yours, too.  This week, we’re talking about ekphrasis poetry.

Don’t be intimidated.  It’s a really big, hard to pronounce word that really just means a poem in which you describe something.  It was started in Greece, by no other great poet than Homer.  He wrote about the Shield of Achilles, which such depth of detail and an ear for lyrical writing.  Anything that Homer does is pure gold, and this is just one more thing we’ve got to thank him for.  I mean, who else from that age are people still reading and enjoying?

Here’s an example from the master.  I couldn’t hope to come up with something as cool as this.

“And first Hephasestus makes a great and massive shield, blazoning well-wrought emblems all across its surface, raising a rim around it, glittering, triple-ply with a silver shield-strap run from edge to edge and five layers of metal to build the shield itself.”

Gorgeous isn’t it?  I’m not the only one who fan girls about Homer, am I?  So this week, your writing prompt is to write an Ekphrasis poem.

Writing Prompt Saturday- Write a Renga Poem

Ready for some group fun?  Continuing my love of Japanese poetry, I’m so excited to introduce the Renga poetry form.  Which can basically be called a poetry party game.  So, grab some friends and play.

Here’s how it works.  The first person makes a three line stanza, with 17 syllables.  It can either be a haiku or a senryu, either one.

Then, the next person makes the next stanza, attaching it to the first.

Being a great party game, I thought it would be fun if we did it here.  I’ll start

Petals on the floor

mixed with broken bits of glass

in the morning sun

Alright, anyone who wants to pick it up in the comment section, go!

Writing Prompt Saturday- Write a Habin

How is it possible that I have never heard of this before? What with my love of haiku, sent you and tanka poetry, you would have thought I would have found Habin a long time ago.

It’s not a poetry form, strictly speaking. Think of it as more of a prose form that is designed to complement haikus. It should, in fact must, be beautiful and poetic on its own.

When writing a habin, you want to remember a few things. First, while this is prose that reads like poetry, it traditionally is impersonal. While this is hard to master, it’s not impossible. It’s really a masterful form. Think about it; you’re trying to invoke deep emotions in the reader without imparting any of your own.

I love that. It gives the reader the opportunity to decide how they feel about an image, instead of depending on what the writer thought about it.

So let’s try it. Take a haiku you’ve written, and write a habin to go along with it. If you need some inspiration, here’s one of mine.

Wetness in the air
Grey clouds heavy overhead
Washing off old snow

It’s a simple moment in a simple day, these clouds above a rain soaked ground. While the sun might be a pleasure at this dark and wet time, if there was no rain, the dark mess of the snow might linger until it’s covered by fresh again.

Our affiliate sponsor for the week is Pen Boutique. They’re still doing a ten percent off sale. Which is a pretty good deal if you’re looking to invest in a Filofax planner, like I am.

Did you write a Habin poem? Let us see it in the comment section below.

Writing Prompt Saturday- Write An Abecedarian Poem

This post contains an affiliate link at the bottom

For those of us who have little ones, this is a poetry form that you can share with your kids. Especially if you’re kids are little enough that they’re still learning there alphabet.

Like so many other poetic forms, this poetry form started in Greece.  Ah, Greece, you’ve given us awesome food, great poetry, and an amazing collection of mythological stories.  Thank you.

An abecedarian poem will have 26 lines, because each line starts with a letter of the alphabet, going in order from A to Z.

As always, I love poetry that has rules, making your carve your creativity around natural borders like a road carved around a mountain. I think it makes you think beyond your first idea.

Here’s a great example of an abecedarian poem. It’s only an excerpt, though, because the whole text is rather long. Here’s a link to the whole thing.

Nonsense Alphabet
Edward Lear, 1812 – 1888

A was an ant
Who seldom stood still,
And who made a nice house
In the side of a hill.

Nice little ant!

B was a book
With a binding of blue,
And pictures and stories
For me and for you.

Nice little book!

C was a cat
Who ran after a rat;
But his courage did fail
When she seized on his tail.

Crafty old cat!
So try your hand at an an abecedarian poem this weekend.

What do you think about abecedarian poetry?  Did you try writing one?  Let us know in the comments below!

Also, if you get a chance, check out Pen Boutique.  Absolutely some of the best looking pens I’ve seen, and I spend way too much time looking at pens online.

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Markets- Wergle Flomp Humor poetry contest

I really do love poetry in all forms.  My love affair started when I was a little girl in the most irreverent of ways, with Shel Silverstein.  If you’ve never read Where The Sidewalk Ends, A Light In The Attic or Falling Up, go read them right now.  If you read those when you were little, go read Everything On It, and get ready to cry a lot.

And so, it is in this spirit that I am so proud to tell you about the Wergle Flomp Humor poetry contest.  Just as it sounds, this is a contest devoted to poetry that makes people laugh.

Genre- Humorous poetry

Word Count- Any length is acceptable

Sub Date- April 1.  Sorry about that, I usually try to get these to you earlier, but I only just heard about it, and it was too good to pass up.

Wait Time- Non specific.

Payout- Top prize is $1,000, but there are lesser prizes as well.

And, if you’re looking to make money on your blog, don’t forget to check out Share A Sale.

Don’t forget that every Monday, I post a new literary agent on our Paper Beats World Facebook page.

Any luck with this market?  What do you think?

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