A Zejel for You (poem)

The Square Watch-Tower

When rain clouds move across the blue,
When life’s nothing but wading through
The endless stream of chores to do,

When meaning’s nowhere to be found,
When you’ve no clue where you are bound
Or what will give you the high ground
When times are tough and friends are few —

Keep plowing through the push and pull,
Keep smiling like a happy fool,
Keep giving till your heart is full:
“This too shall pass” is ever true.

 

Prompted by Writer’s Digest Zejel Poetic form challenge.

Image: Jan van Goyen. The Square Watch-Tower, 1651. Oil on panel, Overall: 22 3/4 x 35 1/4 in. (57.8 x 89.5 cm). BF843. Public Domain.

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High School Graduation (poem)

graduation, waving

No regrets,
no broken wings that one can
not mend, no heartache, not yet,

no pain, just
souls powered up by high winds,
nothing but happiness—trust—

lies ahead,
so it shall be, white seagulls
gainst the morning sky of red.

 

Shared on Poetic Asides

 

Do You Strambotto?

Woman Walking in an Exotic Forest (Femme se promenant dans une forêt exotique)

I stepped outside to see the evening birdsong,
and hear the lilacs fill the air with purple
and white aroma, and to drown before long
in maybe-May. Falling beyond the circle
of probability, defying lifelong
perceptions of what’s real, the twilight sparkled
with myriads of realms. Mind–proven all wrong–
accepted its defeat, joyfully humbled.

 

Prompted by Poetic Asides Strambotto Poetic Form Challenge.

Image: Henri Rousseau. Woman Walking in an Exotic Forest (Femme se promenant dans une forêt exotique), 1905. Oil on canvas, Overall: 39 3/8 x 31 3/4 in. (100 x 80.6 cm). BF388. Public Domain.

 

On April Poem-A-Day Challenge & Free Speech for All, Including Poets

Poetic Asides Blog by Robert Lee Brewer

Got any plans for April?

2018  April Poem-A-Day (PAD) Challenge will be here before you know it.

Check out the guidelines,  and note the interaction that took place in the comments. Here’s an excerpt from it:

Kateland
March 6, 2018 at 12:47 pm
“Well, there are very wide interpretations of “hateful” nowadays. …
Perhaps a set of rules on what themes are considered “hateful” or “intolerable”…

Robert Lee Brewer Post author
March 7, 2018 at 12:50 pm
“I believe in diversity as far as the form and content of poems–expressing a wide range of opinions. As long as it is done respectfully.

I know for a fact that we have poets from around the world, of various faiths, of various political parties and slants, genders, ages, etc.”

Now, if you’re new to the challenge, Poetic Asides is not a political forum — it’s a poetry blog. However, it’s very refreshing to see its commitment to remain a place of free expression. We should not be afraid to voice our opinions.

Write poetry, be respectful while exercising free speech, don’t be a troll — that’s what PA is about. So, flex your poetry muscles!

Have you participated in PAD challenges? Are you in for the poem-a-day this April? Share in the comments.

If you’ve enjoyed the post, press “like” and “share” buttons — thank you.

 

Poetry Business: Free Poetic Challenges & the Hidden Value of Comments

Autumn Landscape (Paysage d'automne)

In the Mind’s Eye

Sometimes we see
Things that will be —
A memory
Of tomorrow

Sometimes we find
It warm and kind
Sometimes our mind
Fills with sorrow

So some sweet day
In June or May
Bathed in sunrays
We remember

How you and I
Share burnt good-byes
Beneath the skies
Of November

Sasha A. Palmer

  • The above poem’s written in response to WD rhupunt challenge. There’s still time to enter: Deadline 11:59 p.m. (Atlanta, GA time) on February 28, 2018. WD Poetic Form challenges are free, and the winning poems (sometimes including a runner-up or two) are featured in Writer’s Digest magazine as part of the Poetic Asides column.

It often pays off to read comments to posts. Thinking of submitting your poetry to journals? Not crazy about submission fees? Check out this list of “younger, hungrier” journals provided by Joe Cottonwood in a comment thread on The Passive Voice site:

  • “Allegro, Ink Sweat & Tears, Literary Nest, MOON magazine, Nature Writing, Peacock Journal, Plum Tree Tavern, Poetry Breakfast, Rat’s A** Review, Red Eft Review, Roanoke Review, Snapdragon, Third Wednesday, Verse Virtual, San Pedro River Review, Pure Slush, Freshwater, Stoneboat, Muddy River Poetry Review, Red River Review, Gyroscope, Uppagus, Halfway Down the Stairs, Forage, Potomac Review, Slipstream, Picaroon… All these journals require no submission fee; all have some excellent undiscovered poets (and a few clunkers, but then so does the New Yorker).”

Got a name or two to add to this list? Share in the comments.

Happy writing, submitting, and getting published.

If you enjoyed this post, do press “like” and “share” buttons — thank you.

Image: Pierre-Auguste Renoir. Autumn Landscape (Paysage d’automne), c. 1884. Oil on canvas (later mounted to fiberboard), Painting: 25 9/16 x 21 1/4 in. (65 x 54 cm) Overall (with secondary support): 26 1/4 x 22 3/8 in. (66.7 x 56.8 cm). BF933. Public Domain.

On Marketing, Short Fiction Awards, & Roundelay

Jane Friedman on marketing for authors, “You’ll be stronger if you have a multi-faceted approach.” Find out what she means.

University of Iowa Press is giving two awards for first collections of short fiction. No entry fee. Deadline: September 30. Check the guidelines, and submit.

A new poetic form challenge from Writer’s Digest. Join the roundelay fun.

Here’s my contribution:

“A Simple Song”

The shore is kind, horizon — wide
A tender breeze so gently blows
Come, take your vessel for a ride
Those swift white caps are not your foes
Our happiness — an ocean tide
That comes and goes, that comes and goes…

Come, take your vessel for a ride
Those swift white caps are not your foes
You would not hold time if you tried
Gold specks of sand between your toes
Our happiness — an ocean tide
That comes and goes, that comes and goes…

You would not hold time if you tried
Gold specks of sand between your toes
Come, sail while dazzling seas abide
The day, the hour — nobody knows
Our happiness — an ocean tide
That comes and goes, that comes and goes…

Come, sail while dazzling seas abide
The day, the hour — nobody knows
Fragile sandcastles builds a child
The setting sun so softly glows
Our happiness — an ocean tide
That comes and goes, that comes and goes…

© 2017 Sasha A. Palmer (aka Happy)

A Small Niche, Instapoetry, & Bragging Time

Did you know that some magazines focus on work created by disabled writers?

“These magazines accept fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, essays, novel and memoir excerpts, reviews, drama, and, in some cases, artwork.”

Try your hand at Instapoetry.

Create an Instapoem, and enter The Missouri Review’s Instagram Contest!

This clogyrnach/acrostic of mine made the Top 10 list on WD Poetic Asides:

Last night the western welkin shone
In bridal glory, moonlight donned
The pure white and red
As Mars Venus wed;
Night is dead —
You are gone.