Thursday, April 10, 2008

Poem-a-Day Challenge

You've all heard the statement, "I'm a poet and didn't know it." Well...the statement that actually identifies me better would be, "I'm not a poet, but I know it." I LOVE to write poetry; I always have. But, I have no delusions about being a "good" poet; a lot of the lines and poems I've written over the years, in fact, have been pure drivel.

Still...I'm drawn to write poetry for a number of different reasons. I can usually write a poem in a very short amount of time. I am not bound by any particular "rules" (it can rhyme, but it doesn't have to; I can just ramble, or I can write with more structure). Mostly, though, it's just a way of getting feelings and moments down on paper in a really accessible way.

So, imagine my absolute DELIGHT when I discovered that April is National Poetry Month and that Writer's Digest online is sponsoring a poem-a-day challenge. I didn't discover the challenge blog until it had already gotten started, so I went back and played "catch up" with several of the challenges and now I'm HOOKED!

It is such a joy to read the other poems that are posted in the comments section (a lot of those people are, obviously, real poets; very unlike me! LoL) and it just inspires you.

I'm going to do the challenges everyday and I think I will post them here on my blog. The idea is to just make yourself write, one way or the other, and not worry about the quality of your creations. Just write!!!

(Check it out yourself, and try it--even if you've never written a poem. You'll be amazed at how freeing the act of creating a poem is!)

Here are a few of my first creations for the challenge...

The challenge: write a "tribute" or "thankful" poem in honor of someone else in your life.

"Mom and Dad"

today, McKenna turned 16.
she's driving.
she thinks she's independent.

yet, in my mind,
she's fresh from God.
smelling of baby powder,
crying for me to pick her up.

so, Mom and Dad,
today I understand you better.
I'm pretty sure I get it now.

The challenge: start off with one word and write a poem based on that one word.

"Dress Up"

sleeping beauty is your favorite princess,
so thank goodness you have
that pink ruffly skirt,
pink shirt,
pink slippers,
and clip-on (pink!) earrings.

you tire soon, though, of aurora;
open your dress-up trunk,
and find
that lime-green tutu,
plastic bouquet,
supergirl cape,
and magenta (sparkly!) feather boa.

sleeping beauty is a memory,
and now you dream of life as a
& marilyn monroe.

that's my girl.

The challenge: write a poem about worry.


Maybe rose-colored vision isn’t always that clear.
maybe I’m not very practical.
and, okay, maybe a little naïve.
Maybe my sunny side really does
hide a denial of unpleasant things
(thanks, dr. whoever, for that!)

but, after careful consideration,
I’m just gonna stick with my plan.

And live
with Contentment,
in Joy,
on Faith.

And drinking from a glass that’s half-full.

The challenge: put yourself in someone/something else's shoes and write a poem from that perspective

"Almost 12"

i'll say "yes, ma'am" but it will be like pulling teeth.

you can't make me get along with my sister.
and don't even think about criticizing me,
or looking at me funny,
because i'll roll my eyes
(or burst into tears, one of the two).

and, oh yeah,
did you know that you're the worst parents ever?
everyone has a cell phone but me.
everyone else's myspace is public.
everyone else can watch mtv.

i'm almost 12,
and there's nothing you can do about it.

but wait...
one more thing.

i still want you to tell me what i should do.
i really do like all of your stories.
and can you please tuck me in?
“i love you, Mom.”

because, after all, i'm only almost 12.

Now, there...I challenge you!!!


Adrienne said...

Ahhhh, love to read poetry but not write it! LOL

Phats said...

I think you need to check out my latest entry, you'll be pleasantly surprised

Lynilu said...

Cheryl, I love the poetry! :)

hippochick said...

I love them all. Writing poetry always leaves me baffled. I think I'll just try one. If I succeed, I'll post it on my blog.

Keep having fun.

Gin said...

awesome! I really like the last one.

Maria said...

This is SUCH A COOL challenge Cheryl! I love it! I'm going to have to get my thinking hat on and join you in this super fun project!

Cheryl Wray said...

Adrienne--I bet you could do it. You're so creative.

Phats--Hmmm, now you got me wondering. I'm heading over there now.


Hippo--Of, I hope you give it a go. Just write to write and don't worry about what it's "supposed" to be.


Maria--I could totally see you doing it!! The word person that you are! :-)

Patti said...

I'll stick to reading poetry I had an aunt who was wonderful at it. I'm in awe of anyone that can do it!

Linda said...

just gorgeous...I love the almost 12. Beautiful

Leah said...

Love what you have written! You'll have to incorporate those into some scrap pages!

That's a very challenging thing, writing poetry. I'm impressed!

Edleen said...

i've always loved poetry, words are beautiful :) love your poem!

have a Lovely Friday!