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I had climbed up onto the sink in the bathroom, opened the medicine cabinet, taken out my mother’s lipstick and was trying to apply it to my own face when my grandfather caught a glimpse of me. How does her attitude differ from that of her friend?He probably mistook the lipstick for blood and rushed forward to rescue me. What interests me about the memory are the themes of beauty and transformation and their link to danger. Writing: If you are looking for a topic to write about, think of some of the misconceptions you had when you were very young; put yourself back in that frame of mind, and see what kind of writing results.In what ways do those line breaks help to add meaning, interest, or resonance to the poems?Find one line break you find particularly interesting. How do you interpret the last five lines of the poem?This is life, I said to myself as I spit out the pits.

How does the use of this form enhance this exploration? In fact, feel free to criticize the fact of it, too, if it's boring, or tasteless, or boring. The other reason for telling the audience my poem was true was because my poems are true. If it's someone else's idea for a poem, I’m like a toad attempting to suckle a mourning dove. Once I tried writing a play, and all the characters sounded like the same person—me. I might be a narcissist—all this writing about myself and my life—but I rather think it's that I lack the ability to invent. Sometimes I condense or combine the literal truths. and what the weather was doing when I swallowed them.If you are feeling adventurous, read about canzones. Are there serious elements in this very humorous poem? What elements do you find in the poet’s attitude toward children and parents? Try composing a poem in which you reveal your own attitude(s) toward a parent, a child or a sibling, perhaps focusing on a single incident or a series of related incidents. b) about a rendezvous, as in “Raspberries” (p.31) and “Grass” (p. Another possibility: write about a lust or a crush, as in “Courting the Muse” (p. Write a “persona poem” as Hall does in “Weddings” (p. In a poem about someone who may have hurt you or with whom you have had a falling out, see if you can achieve the same sort of empathy by imagining yourself into the life of the other person.15. Try writing such a poem, perhaps doing some research to bone up on the life of a celebrity who intrigues you. Each poem builds on the one before it, so we urge you to read the book straight through, from start to finish. Make an effort to write your way past whatever barriers you might have constructed to mitigate the pain of loss or disappointment. When I was first called upon to give poetry readings, I would often preface the poem by explaining—rather defensively—that the poem was true. While I was depressed, both a relative and one friend suggested that I enjoyed my pain., edited by Philip Dacey and David Jauss, has a clear explanation of the form and some good examples. You might want to keep in mind that forms like this one often lend themselves more easily to story-telling than to philosophizing, although like all rules about writing, this one is made to be broken. The sonnet is another form used frequently in although the author favors loose sonnets marked by slant rhyme and syllabics (in which each line contains the same number of syllables), rather than meter and full rhyme. If so, what is the effect of balancing humor and seriousness? Bear in mind that ambivalence is often the hallmark of truth and that it is usually better to be specific, to show rather than tell. 83)—that is, a poem in which you speak in the voice of someone else. In the end, it will be interesting to consider the ways in which the title might be construed.2. 13) is, in one respect, a “catalogue poem” in the tradition of Walt Whitman. Just as this poem begins with a quotation that the poem contradicts, you might compose a poem that begins with someone’s statement then takes issue with it. Try a poem in which you describe the early stages of a love when all is bright and shiny, perhaps a first rendezvous or meeting, a first getaway, etc. Another told me I must "Get over it." And I see how a healthy person could want to say these things to someone who seems to refuse to see that life is so beautiful. Describing depression and despair is impossible because despair and depression are indescribable.See if you can imply more than you state in the poem, perhaps some sort of family dynamic. It is interesting to look at “The Short Way to the Beach” from at least two points of view: a) its relationship to the book’s title and overall theme, and b) its use of form. You might want to read a formal translation of Dante’s Divine Comedy (Robert , for instance) to see a rather famous use of the form. For another use of the same form, read Robert Frost’s “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening.” Now try your hand at this form, perhaps in a poem that describes a child’s perilous journey, short though that journey might be. Consider the ending of “Souvenir” in which a “gentle sway of blue” vanishes “into the flowered meadow.”What, for you, is the psychology of the child’s act? Try a poem of your own in which a child (perhaps you, perhaps not) performs an act inspired by the same sort of feeling present in “Souvenir.” 8. He wrote and wrote and wrote, with no time to live or work or even think too much.“My Father’s Heart” is breath-taking in its combination of strong emotion and strict form. This sounds humorous, maybe, but the man obviously had a sickness.

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