Hello, all! There are just three days left in our April poetry-writing adventure! I hope you’ve been enjoying it.
Our featured participant today is Thoughts of Words, where the Tarot poem for Day Twenty-Seven features a poetical hermit.
Today, we bring you a new craft resource, in the form of this history and exploration of the prose poem. This essay helpfully catalogs several different styles of prose poem, with examples, and possible strategies for writing.
And now for our prompt (optional, as always). Following the suggestion of our craft resource, we challenge you today to draft a prose poem in the form/style of a postcard. If you need some inspiration, why not check out some images of vintage postcards? I’m particularly fond of this one.
I did a workshop several years ago with old postcards, so after looking at the NaPo link I started to research for postcard images from England, one came up with the letter writing side so from there I copied more postcard messages as a starting point.
The town is lopsided, one could easily feel drunk
looking at sloping rooftops.
The Poetry School Day 28
Day 28: Music
“Where words fail, music speaks.” ― Hans Christian Andersen
Before we move on, a note on yesterday’s prompt. If anyone wants to continue practising their iambic pentameter (ip), or any other metre they choose, a good habit to get into is to spend five minutes every day, or whenever you can, writing nonsense verse into your notebook in ip. Don’t worry about the sense — at all.
Today I would like you to write a poem while listening to music. For some this may be your regular practice; for some (like me) it will drive you up the wall. Try it either way. It can be the same song on repeat, or perhaps an album of songs all by the same artist, or an entire piece by a composer, but don’t try this with the radio, a mixed-artist playlist, or anything like that. I want you to sink into and feel the music, which can’t be done if it keeps changing.
Once your music is playing, begin to free-write, without stopping, until you can feel the poem emerge. At which point, it will probably be tempting to turn the music off, or mentally drown it out. Don’t. Try and let it in. Try and let the rhythm, the melody, the tone, and the mood affect the way you write.
I should say that your poem doesn’t need to be about the music. It may be preferable to write about something else, perhaps. For obvious reasons, no example poems today, but a nod in the general direction of two poets who I know write with music very much in mind: Bridget Minamore, whose pamphlet Titanic comes with recommended listening (!) and Rishi Dastidar, who, rumour has it, likes to blast music at his workshop students to stimulate emotions.
It is true! I was fortunate enough to do Rishi Dastidar’s Call & Response workshop at Swindon Poetry Festival last year and thoroughly enjoyed using music to wake muse up!
I have also used music several times to write poetry, Candy Royalle used music in her workshop I was in a few years ago too. I do not have the time to write more than one NaPo poem as I am on catch up and have writing deadlines to meet this evening, but what the heck… it only happens once a year, right?