pearls

Afterthought 221—At My Desk

Posted in sonnet cycle by maggie on 2015/04/26

Before my light goes irreversibly dim
I wanted things arranged so you could find
your way around, since I, the undersigned,
yield you full access, subject to your whim —
books I hadn't time to even skim;
a sonnet cycle finished, set to bind
then send as promised; scraps I'll leave behind;
and if you meet my mentor, this for him. 

I gave up hopes I'd organize this mess
I'll leave things in — moleskines untranscribed,
stuff from doctors and bill collectors unfiled,
leftover dreams and visions uncompiled,
shots of my muse's whiskey left unimbibed.
Chaos, my most rigid thighs caress!


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Protected: Afterthought 219—Uncalled For

Posted in crown of sonnets by maggie on 2015/04/25

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Opening Gesture — Notes

Posted in notes by maggie on 2014/04/01
 
             
                                                                                                                                                                    Cutting a swath
                                                                                                                                                                    through thick-dewed grass,
                                                                                                                                                                    I set out.
                                                                                                                                                                                                 — Kifu

My pretext for the start of this new sonnet cycle is a death poem by a Japanese poet who passed in Autumn 1898. Its sentiment and its timing give a perfect setting for this journey on which I myself set out — a new birth created out of a death.

How fitting that this being a Tuesday, according to the Tuesday tradition at a poetry website I’ve frequented through past Aprils (and often during the other eleven months each year), that website prompts us to launch this year’s Poetry Month with one or both of two themes: starting and ending. In the spirit of Kifu, I choose both themes.

Which fits well with the cycle I plan: my starting line in today’s sonnet will be my final line in the sonnet I’ll write this coming April 30, like how I did for a 100-sonnet sequence a portion of which I used to start this poetry blog. Like how I plan to circle back around in my theme, now and at the close, and throughout this month.

As I did last April (Far Cry, posted privately for close friends) and the previous April (An Hour Unwound, partially public) and the previous April (entire cycle posted public elsewhere), this cycle (which I plan to post openly here) will consist of 30 Petrarchan sonnets, each with first line given by the final line of the preceding sonnet. No rhyme sets will be repeated, other than via sharing of the last line of one sonnet with the first line of the next.

As with those previous April cycles, each day during this month I will draft the next sonnet in the cycle, reflecting the prompt given by the poetry website I’d used those past years. Obviously, I don’t know what tomorrow’s prompt will be when I draft today’s sonnet. That affects how I need to work at fitting a whole month of unknown future prompts into a single cohesive and coherent overall theme. More immediately evident, I’ll be writing the final line of each day’s sonnet before I know the next day’s prompt, yet will do my best to make each transition work as smoothly as if I’d known all prompts all along.

In solidarity with a friend whose work was arbitrarily and unfairly censored by the website where I used to post these April cycles, I will abstain from posting any further of my own work there, as also do I not imply any endorsement by once again relying on that website’s prompts during this month. I no longer even read any of the writing that website does choose to carry — when good writing is unjustly censored, one cannot trust what is displayed.

As has been the case for all of my poetry since November 2006, this poetry will be written in the light and love I found in one who was my closest friend. As has been the case for everything I’ve ever said and written and desired, any of the bad that is in any of this will not be about her or for her. But as has had to be, as was chosen and demanded, all of the vast good I could say and wish to write of her must remain silent, unwanted and ignored. So although written in my moonlight as always, nothing here will have anything to say of that.

So then, starting this cycle as I’ll be ending it, with Kifu singing background for me—

                                                   Wrapped in last night’s visions, I set out…

And I’ll reserve what I’ll be writing this all “about” until the closing sestet of my 30th sonnet. On with drafting this first sonnet of this April’s turn.

First Draft of my opening sonnet is now complete. I’m not displeased with it enough to start over from scratch, so I have my first steps decided for me. After some editing and some private notes and some more editing, I’ll post here.

As will be my custom throughout this month, I will keep this post open, editing it continuously as I draft and edit each sonnet.


 
 
 

— remembering Sara

 

Protected: Overheard 100—Guerrilla Love

Posted in sapphics by maggie on 2013/11/23

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Protected: Overheard 99—Guerrilla Garden

Posted in sapphics by maggie on 2013/11/22

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Protected: Overheard 98—Guerrilla Chess

Posted in sapphics by maggie on 2013/11/20

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Protected: Overheard 97—Guerrilla Tech

Posted in sapphics by maggie on 2013/11/19

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Protected: Overheard 96—Guerrilla Pen

Posted in sapphics by maggie on 2013/11/19

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Protected: Overheard 95—Guerrilla Algebra

Posted in sapphics by maggie on 2013/11/18

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