You may be familiar with my Poetry Marathons – I’ve done them since winter, 2015. I take a week, several times a year, and devote it to poetry – writing, editing, all poetry-related activities.
This year, in addition to scheduling the regular long versions, I have decided to do one segment of a Marathon each week. Two to three hours set aside for poetry, outside my regular life. It’s called the Installment Plan Poetry Marathon.
For more background information, look here. And if you want to read previous posts in this series, search this blog under the term Installment Plan Poetry Marathon 2017.
On February 9, we had snow.
My library site, Chestnut Hill College, was closed today, as was my other choice, Arcadia University. So, I did this week’s installment at home, in my art studio. After lunch:
and after shoveling snow:
and after setting out my gloves and boots to dry:
I went downstairs to get to work. You’ve seen my art studio before – you know I have a table there for working on snippets and any other art form that doesn’t make a lot of mess. That’s where I went. I had some work-in-process strewn around already.
I had cut out a lot of new words and phrases the other night, so I was ready to work.
I did a lot of snippets and a couple of short collage poems. It took some time for me to settle into the activity. I am still caring for my husband after his leg surgery and though he is improving daily, I often feel I’m running along a little faster than a pace I can comfortably sustain. I’ve had to come to terms with various matters with family and friends over the past few months as well. And, as with many people in the US, I have been saddened and disheartened by recent political events. I found my snippets reflecting some of my feelings.
And this collage poem: “Can They?”
But it is this collage poem, “Asking Only This”, that I want to mention in particular. Remember, when I do snippets or collage poetry, I work with the materials I have, the words I have already cut out. But of course there are many configurations they can fall into – and they do have a way of arranging themselves so that I work out feelings and thoughts while doing them. Here is the poem:
And here is where it came from, I think. I have put this sign in my front yard ( I am showing you each side; one is red and one is blue):
A local woman started the trend. Now, there are signs on pretty much every street in our township. I am not going to go into politics. I just wanted to put a word in for something I think is very important – even if people disagree, that they still recognize each other as people, with feelings, people worthy of respect and good behavior. For me, this sign means that if you come to my house, I will do my best to treat you with kindness and civility, and you may count on me to approach you as a person worthy of being taken seriously. I’m not promising to like you or your ideas, just to treat you – kindly. Respectfully.
I think this is something, not a big thing, but something – I can do to help hold the world together. I believe that if you behave in a certain way, you will influence yourself to think in that way as well, as time goes on. And from there, maybe, others.
Anyway, not all the poetry was so wrenching to me. How about these?