Saturday, April 28, 2012

National Poetry Month

Did you know April was national poetry month? Well it is. In my current class, we had to write a poem in response to another piece. Okay, I’ll be honest and admit that I didn't like poetry much a short time ago. I've learned to appreciate the complexities and can actually say that I have favorite poets now. I think every fiction writer should take a poetry class. Poetry is infused with some of the most original figurative language. I’ve struggled as a writer to come up with original similes and metaphors for my pieces but if you read enough poetry and study how those authors did it, you can learn.

I thought I’d share my poem here. It is in response to a poem, “Chosen” by Marilyn Nelson. She wrote about the joy of a child born under the duress of rape. How many could find joy in such an event? You can read Nelson's poem here. My poem, not nearly as good, follows:


Oh friend. What pain I feel. How many tears can I shed?
Filling the earth. Filling my empty heart.
The sand on the beach is hostile now. Grief and sorrow married
Took up residence in my soul. How could you take me? My friend?

Waiting, nails drumming like soldiers marching to the cadence.
Why did this happen? Not the question. What now? Patience
A lifetime of it, maybe. Mind twirling toward the abyss.
And yet. She is. Little one, wiggling and smiling in my minds eye.

No. No. Not you. Not now. I’m too young, too proud,
Two selfish. You need more than I can give.
Me - inadequate, false. Him – liar and thief. Thief of my purity.
No, you cannot be. You should not be. Yet you are.

For eighteen years I will look upon my betrayal with an afflicted heart. My friend, my friend how could you? Now we are united by blood because you were consumed with fire. I smolder in my obligation while you devour your next victim.


Have a great day. Read a book and laugh!



  1. I used to write poetry all the time, but once I began writing novels, I stopped. There's a part of me that misses it.

  2. Hi, there are some powerful lines in there. What an ordeal for any young woman in this situation.

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