Congratulations NaPo Class of 2018!
April 2018 saw an amazing bunch of you take on the National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) challenge and whether you managed 2 or 30 poems, we got our poem on!
Well done to everyone who took part and we hope you have pieces you are truly proud of.
Dear BouquetOne of my reasons to breathe
With your stunning beauty
I'm blessed with your presence
Six delicate roses
Although you have yet to bloom
You still take my breath away
Unaware of your beauty
I shed a tear as my heart aches
Hoping one day you'll see the glow I do
When I've lost all hope
And my soul is stained with sorrow
A glance at you chases the rain clouds away
Oh, darling bouquet
I'll protect your flowers
As your thorns remain
sky fathercloudy eyes sweeping over
a past that only halfway happened,
shining with all
the tender violence
of a lightning strike -
you are unwilling to let go.
III. Papa, you've got seven bucksI want
this crease between my eyes like my lost father’s
when he remembers his bully’s middle name
or forgets mine.
Or when he realizes he never got to grow up.
turbid watersI’m going to tell you a lie:
I can’t live without you
you deathgrip to these placid waters
while I contemplate
the nuance of ‘we’
I’ve dreamt of raging rivers and sonorous seas
that low whale-chested bellow
glaciers tipped on edge
I’ve made love to the open ocean
salt spray in my face
deep creatures trawling below
I’ve beached myself on you
and now I’m finished sunning
Gram's HandsEach time I see her, more lines
have manifested on her hands:
one here, for New England, for
another trip to her aging sister
who doesn't fly and hardly
remembers anything; one there,
for Texas, for her youngest
who got married late, had kids
late, and moved soon after;
one for her grandkids in California,
and one for her grandkids
she treasures them,
this map she's created of herself—
she runs her fingers along the lines,
tracing trails as she talks, re-reading
the routes of her history, and
at the end of the conversation
creating another that extends just
slightly past the one before.
dear so and so (4/30)dear so and so,
it has come to my attention
that this life has gone belly-up
and morning birds don't sing (for me).
if they ever unearth my remains
they'll see I still remain
the same, as I did before
and that's okay -- I'm okay
with the way colors lose their hue
or how the lilies you grew for me
always die after a little while
because even muted things
have their place.
And it's okay that I'm diluted
and shapeless because I could be
everything or nothing at all.
Maybe nothing even really matters.
Maybe that's the point.
but do you know where courage sleeps?
I had been trying to find it
and shake it awake so I too
could know it.
But someone once told me that this
was no place for me.
And I think there's some truth to that.
So, for now I'll stack my bones
neatly where they lay, and scatter
my ashes where you can't find them.
I hope someday you'll forgive me.
song to the moonnow you may start over.
smiling at the faint light
a writer sits under her lover's window
as the horizon flares
luminous craters & freckles
blow a kiss to
the softness and charcoal darkness
setting the sky centered around a glow
has given the world to
two runaways stand in a tile-roofed pagoda
hold the ends of the wishbone and never pull
wishing they could
remain there forever.
even though promises won't
try to survive
minutes drip on
golijov, the knights, azul
she shimmers in a pool
Plan Man StanYesterday I hunted tomorrow
I laid traps for its problems
I prepared it's meals
I laid out its clothes
Set it's agenda
Stalked its peculiarities
Today I have found it
Don't forget to share your favourite pieces in our poll!
But it doesn't stop in April!
Poetry isn't a write once and leave it kind of deal. It is a craft that needs love and attention. Editing poetry is what perfects it and spending that time can really make a poem you bashed out for NaPo reach its true potential.
What you created in April was a foundation of something stronger. We want to encourage all of you- even if you take 1 or 2 pieces and really focus on them- EDIT EDIT EDIT
Where do I start?
We're not going to re-create the wheel. There are some fantastic guides written by the gods of poems past and they live in the archives of dA and we have them here for you!
Please take care to read them because they are gold! Especially the first!
Tips For Editing Poetry
***Tips For the Novice (and otherwise) - Editing***
The blanket statement, "Editing/revision harms poetry," is simply wrong. It's akin to a photographer claiming that focusing the lens ruins the emotion of the photograph. It is the details, and the appropriate attention paid to them, that separate a photograph from a snapshot. Imagine a film maker slapping every frame he shot up on the screen without editing for continuity, for pacing, for effect. What a disaster. That is not to say that editing can't be destructive - there is such a thing as poor editing, just as there is poor writing. But done correctly, done well, it is one of the most important tools in the poet's shed.
Never shy away from editing/revision. Some young writers feel that to revise is to kill the spirit of the poem. This notion serves to sacrifice the potential of a poem for an ideal that
Poetry Self-Edit Checklist
Poetry Self-Edit Quick Start Guide and Checklist
The idea behind this is to give newer poets a way to better edit their poetry themselves, without having to rely as much on an external editor. It can be frustrating, especially for new poets to request feedback from a friend, or worse, to post a poem, and have all of the responses be about grammatical errors and other details. We write poetry to convey ideas and emotions, and when something is off technically about the poem it distracts the reader. When a reader is distracted enough to notice an error or other problem it means they might spend the time they might otherwise have spent glowing about your poem to post a comment correcting you instead.
After this introduction is over the checklist will be as brief as possible while retaining its utility. The idea is to serve as an organizational tool and a reminder rather than to educate on effective
Poetry Basics: BrevityBrevity: n. the quality of expressing much in few words.
When I was in tenth grade, I took my first literature course. It was a six week exploration of poetry. The first poem my teacher showed us was Ezra Pound's In a Station of the Metro:
The apparition of faces in the crowd;
Petals on a wet, black bough.
I, in all of my 16-year-old knowledge of the intricacies of what poetry is, informed my teacher that those two lines were not a poem.
"You don't think so?"
"No. They don't rhyme, they are just one metaphor, and did I mention they're only two lines?"
She sure showed me.
Importance in Poetry
Pound's poem is considered such a great work because he inserts several layers into a single image. Using only 13 words he evokes an entire painting within the reader's mind. You can hear the sounds of the trains, see the fatigue of a mother wrestling with her cranky toddler,
Dr. EditloveLit Basics Week
Or, how I learned to stop worrying and love the edit
It's a common misconception that the end result of writing is a finished product, which can then be sent out to magazines, nailed to a door, read aloud to your prisoners—whatever it is you usually do with your work.
The end result of writing is editing. And the goal of editing is to produce a finished result you can take pride in.
What editing is for
Resolving big errors, e.g. continuity, plot holes, inaccuracies, and other problems that will dampen the overall effect of your work.
Fixing details, e.g. grammar/spelling, ambiguous wording, and other technical issues.
Producing a polished work.
Editing gives you the opportunity to take your work and bring it up to scratch.
Why don't we do this on the initial write? Because getting the ideas down in the first place, and getting them all the way to completion, is a demanding process. Maybe you've written a piece about an improbable goal, but
Don't forget you can also ask for critique. We have plenty of events including live chat events for critique requests. There is also the monthly forum thread for requests and a whole host of literature groups such as theWrittenRevolution
Share you Experiences!
We'd really like to hear what others have got out of NaPoWriMo. Maybe it is pieces which have been converted into published material? Has it started a new chapbook or helped you hone in on particular skills? Let us know because we always like to celebrate success and help others understand the personal achievement this challenge can bring.
Don't forget that July brings Flash-Fic-Month for those prosers out there and if you are hanging onto poetry only, book your December out for ProjectDFC