GloPoWriMo 2022: 10/30

I am asked to write a love poem.

Rasam

How you fulfil me,
Let me count the ways,
In sadness, you bring warmth,
In moments of joy, you enhance my feelings,
On rainy days, you are comfort, in a mug,
Or with rice,
Your flavours,
Divine.

GloPoWriMo 2022: 9/30

Weekends are apparently meant to be used for more writing, and NaPoWriMo is taking advantage of that to suggest some form-based prompts. Today’s is the nonet! A nonet has nine lines. The first line has nine syllables, the second has eight, and so on until you get to the last line, which has just one syllable.

Raven

From my bedroom window, a raven
sits steady on a spring-time tree,
his velvet tones romancing
a long distance lover.
This secret language
melancholy,
is desire,
is love,
hope.

GloPoWriMo 2022: 8/30

Today’s prompt comes to us from this list of “all-time favorite writing prompts.” It asks you to name your alter-ego, and then describe him/her in detail. Then write in your alter-ego’s voice. Maybe your alter-ego is a streetwise detective, or a superhero, or a very small goldfinch.

These are rough prompts. I’ve never been one for imagining myself as anything other than the human I am, so I’m struggling with this. Instead, therefore, I am writing a haiku. Although it’s spring, this one feels a lot like autumn.

Autumn

birch tree stamps kindly
bleakly, fervently, acorn
quibbles, darkening

GloPoWriMo 2022: 7/30

 Today, the prompt asks me to write a poem that argues against, or somehow questions, a proverb or saying. They say that “all cats are black at midnight,” but really? Surely some of them remain striped. And maybe there is an ill wind that blows some good. Perhaps that wind just has some mild dyspepsia.

I struggled with this immensely and could only come up with the one stanza, that I am hopeful will lead to a more cohesive poem some time in the future.

Absence Makes The Heart Grow

Absence makes the heart grow flabbier,
Losing musculature, it fattens in its forgetting, 
Straining, feigning remembrance of
Blocked off, walled memories.

GloPoWriMo 2022: 6/30

Today’s prompt is a challenge to write a variation of an acrostic poem. But rather than spelling out a word with the first letters of each line, we are encouraged to write a poem that reproduces a phrase with the first words of each line. I knew GloPoWriMo had encouraged me to write an acrostic a few years ago, but really had to dig the archives for this one, from 2017, where I wrote one on Warfare.

Break a Leg

Before important events and milestones people
risk everything and move mountains for,
everyone feels trepidation, nausea,
and the unpleasantness that everything is going to go wrong; but you, you should
know that the Universe functions in the most miraculous ways,
and I believe in you, for
labour always translates, fortune always favours the brave. Have faith that
every little thing is going to be all right; you’re going to be amazing,
good luck!

GloPoWriMo 2022: 5/30

Today, the challenge is to write a poem about a mythical person or creature doing something unusual – or at least something that seems unusual in relation to that person/creature. For example, what does Hercules do when he loses a sock in the dryer? If a mermaid wants to pick up rock-climbing as a hobby, how does she do that? What happens when a mountain troll makes pancakes?

I am far and away the least fiction-wise creative person I know. I struggle with fictional thoughts and fabricating things from my imagination. Despite being a tactful liar, my creative energies are concentrated on the real world, so this is quite the ask. I’ve interpreted this loosely, where the mythical creature for me is someone who works without a break (and enjoys it) – and the surprising/unusual act is taking time off. The title sounds awfully close to a children’s essay or an Enid Blyton book, which contributes to the rhyme scheme and pattern I set myself on.

Sajet Sleeps

As the sun rose in his part of the world,
Sajet awoke to the sound an Outlook notification,
Deep into his comforter he curled,
Decided today would be a one-day vacation.

He slept all day, and slept all night,
Sajet gave his family and boss a good fright,
They kept calling but he snored and snored,
Sajet decided people made him bored.

The next morning, Sajet arose from his slumber,
Found fifteen missed calls on his cellphone number,
When he read his mails, he saw things were on track,
But replied to his parents that he was awake, online, and back.

Then he was notified they docked his pay,
Adding penalties for deliverables that he delayed,
The whole thing seemed like an elaborate insult,
Until he remembered he was an adult.


GloPoWriMo 2022: 4/30

Today, I am challenged to write a poem in the form of a poetry prompt. The poet Mathias Svalina has been writing surrealist prompt-poems for quite a while, posting them to Instagram. You can find examples here, and here, and here.

For my prompt-poem, I wrote a set that I would be keen to read, and what I usually start conversations with when I am texting people.

You

  1. Your fondest childhood possession,
  2. Your happiest childhood memory,
  3. The walk you took last week,
  4. The breakfast you ate this morning,
  5. That disturbed night of sleep,
  6. Your biggest fear,
  7. The smallest inconvenience,
  8. The shapes you see on ink-blots and in clouds,
  9. The adjectives you identify yourself in,
  10. You.

GloPoWriMo 2022: 3/30

This one is a bit complex . It’s a Spanish form called a “glosa” – literally a poem that glosses, or explains, or in some way responds to another poem. The idea is to take a quatrain from a poem that you like, and then write a four-stanza poem that explains or responds to each line of the quatrain, with each of the quatrain’s four lines in turn forming the last line of each stanza. Traditionally, each stanza has ten lines. Here’s a nice summary of the glosa form.

I tried.

[more thicker than forget]

love is more thicker than forget
more thinner than recall
more seldom than a wave is wet
more frequent than to fail

– [love is more thicker than forget], E.E. Cummings

when she arrives,
no space in my heart is left hollow,
every word, weighty, not shallow,
her time a gift,
her company my safety net,
love is more thicker than forget.

when she departs,
she carries our meeting,
time past feels fleeting,
my memory palace locked,
its drawbridge will not fall,
love is more thinner than recall.

when she re-emerges,
she is different,
this is no deterrent,
the evening passes,
we pretend it is the first time we have met,
love is more seldom than a wave is wet.

it is unfortunate then when she settles,
that my overthinking commences,
this calm storm, rocked by hail,
remains steady, unfazed,
love is more frequent than to fail.

GloPoWriMo 2022: 2/30

Today, I am challenged to write a poem based on a word featured in a tweet from Haggard Hawks, an account devoted to obscure and interesting English words. I picked this one.

Nemesist

Doomed from when I hit snooze,
My sleep consumes memories I could be making,
Moments I could be sharing, work I could be doing.
In that process,
Kafka-esque forces make me a chronophage,
I tell my parents I am a creature of habit, a night-owl,
Alas, the moon sees no transformation,
I remain human, not a werebeast, and as it were,
I have procrastinated everything,
For the monkey in my brain refuses to concentrate on the important things,
Choosing instead to eat time to fulfil its hunger.


GloPoWriMo 2022: 1/30

April 2021 passed me by in preparing for examinations and surviving the dissonance I faced between where I was living and what was happening back at home. Amma and I spoke about GloPoWriMo, but I could not be bothered to write at all. This year, I realised the month had begun only on April 2nd, and my cousin messaged me to ask whether we were writing this year. That little nudge was enough encouragement to start up. So here I sit, on April 5th, five poems in hand, posting them one-by-one. The rest of the month should see this play out with more consistency, ideally taking me back to the daily posting this blog offers the promise of.

The prompt today is based on Robert Hass’ remarkable prose poem, “A Story About the Body.” The idea is to write your own prose poem that, whatever title you choose to give it, is a story about the body. The poem should contain an encounter between two people, some spoken language, and at least one crisp visual image.

Rotund

His childhood friends say it first, “Man, you look so good – you’ve lost weight, haven’t you?”. It’s the question that catches him off guard. Why do they ask when he feels like a dried raisin rather than a grape? Six months of portioning meals and no sugar, before the chorus of aunties and uncles offer their views. No pleasantries exchanged but an immediate recognition of shape, “Your cheeks are less round” and marks, “We can see your dimples”. Colours too, “Aww, he’s blushing”, as they turn to his mother and only half-jokingly mutter, “You should get him married when he’s like this”. For those minutes, he holds his tongue, thinking about the dimpled skin hiding stretch marks and how inner-shirts hide the inverted hourglass his body presents in the mirror. He has fasted for this, and so, eats orange gravy, naans, and gulab jamoons to his hearts’ content. All of this till he goes home, feels his fingers along his bulging belly and notices the jamoon he has become.