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Posts Tagged ‘edward lear’

Having spent most of the month endlessly recovering from what my doctor called a “quiet” case of pneumonia (everyone’s a poet these days) I find myself longing for all the foods I am restricted from eating. That, in turn, makes me think about recipes which have a rhythm of their own at times. And then I stumble across an article in the newspaper featuring some nonsense recipes. And so, a tribute.

for Edward of Holloway

First
Find the circumference
Of one golden Kumquat
Cored
Gored
And tossed in a pot

Determine
An Anglerfish’s degree
Plucked fresh from the Sea
Sliced
Diced
Sauted until hot

Next
A measure of Music
Boiled up with a flourish
Brash
Rash
Performed at a trot

Then
A quartful of quarters
Poached from Four-flushers
Stacked
Packed
Set fire to the lot

Last
Add the Palm of one Heart
Unbroken, unblue
Caressed
A-dressed
And free of all clot

When you find your nerves shot
Rattled
Embattled
Once the mixture congeals
You’ll find it will yield
One Lear

Sort of a recipe, kind of an homage, at least the nonsense part makes, er, sense.

Poetry Friday, unlike any other friday because of its poetriness, this week being rounded up over at Hey, Jim Hill! If you haven’t come her from there, then go there from here!

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Every year it’s always the same.  I vow I’m going to not only find a way to participate in National Poetry Month but I’m gonna carry that spirit beyond April and throughout the rest of the year.

But I don’t.  And because I can’t I have decided I am not really dedicated enough to actually consider myself a poet of any grade. That doesn’t stop me from trying again year after year.

Last year I used npm as my testing ground for signing onto Twitter.  My goal was to post one new haiku a day and sort of get myself up to speed in social media and that went well enough so I’m going to try again this year.  Like last year I’ll be collecting the week’s Tweets into a Poetry Friday post, but since this first roundup comes only a day in I thought I’d do a little behind-the-scenes with these Tweets.

impatient saplings
force frost-burnt buds and brown leaves
elderly trees wait

A few weeks back we had a burst of spring coming straight out of some bitter cold.  I couldn’t help notice that some of the younger trees and bushes in the neighborhood couldn’t wait to send out new buds and baby leaves.  Five days later we got a bitter cold bunch of rain that caused flooding and over-saturated ground and those buds started to get freezer burn.  The haiku wrote itself

lost school craft knowledge:
white glue and rubber cement
fingerprints and snot

I was thinking about how we used to paint desks with rubber cement, let it dry a little, then ball it up into fake snots that we would hang from our nostrils.  Which reminded me of how we used to put white Elmer’s glue on our fingertips and peal it off when dry and study our fingerprints.  What I wasn’t able to include in this etude for adhesives was how we liked to take peppermint scented paste and smear it on our teeth and then lick it off.

By midday yesterday a friend from school through down a challenge: “What, no limericks?”  Hmm.  Would a limerick fit the 140 character limit of Twitter?  Could I also write a limerick a day for a month?  I thought of Edward Lear, and “The Owl and the Pussycat” (not written in limerick form), and the image of a man and a cat at sea bobbed around my mental ocean.  An idea struck, a twist, then the cat disappeared and the following emerged.

There was an old salt name of Plum
Who drank rum ‘til his innards were numb
Took to sea in a scow
Taunted sharks from the prow
And now everyone just calls him Chum

It took two Tweets to make it fit, so maybe Twitter isn’t the best place for a limerick, but I enjoyed the challenge.

Finally, a biographical haiku, fitting for April Fools Day.  And totally true.

the joke is on me
all day my underwear was
inside out, backward

Don’t ask me how I didn’t figure this out earlier.

So here we go.  National Poetry Month and twitku and maybe the occasional limerick.  Follow along on Twitter, or join in by adding your own haiku with the #twitku tag.  And for the first time in a long while I’m participating in Poetry Friday which is hosted this week at Book Aunt.

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Said the Marshmallow Man of Luxor:
“Trick or Treat! Give me what I’ve come for!”
So we gave him a scorch,
With a creme brulee torch,
Then we dined on a forty pound s’more.

Recognizing that the limerick is oft considered juvenile form of poetry, more appealing to boys than girls, I have nonetheless come to embrace the format as a perfect platform for a collection of holiday-themed poems I am working on.

Here I have followed Edward Lear’s lead in starting with a ridiculous person from a particular place, followed by an outlandish statement, leading to a twisted resolution. There is nothing political intended or implied in the choice of place, only its ability to fit the patter and the rhyme. In this case I began with an idea of a giant marshmallow on Halloween being turned into a giant s’more. From there the rest of the limerick practically wrote itself.

While Lear often has a last line that’s a slightly, often judgmental, variant on the first line (That contemptible man from Luxor) I find that solution a bit of a cheat and go for the full punchline when attempting limericks.

Yes, I probably should get back to my school reading…

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