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Thursday, April 18, 2013

NaPoWriMo Day 15: A form new to me...It smacks of ghazal, in my mind.

Copying from the NaPoWriMo site, "Today, I challenge you to write a pantun.  Not a pantoum--though they are related.  The pantun is a traditional Malay form, a style of which was later adapted into French and then English as the pantoum. A pantun consists of rhymed quatrains (abab), with 8-121 syllables per line.  The first two lines of each quatrain aren't meant to have a formal, logical link to the second two lines, although the two halves of each quatrain are supposed to have an imaginative or imagistic connection.  Here's an example: [still quoting from the NaPoWriMo site] 

     I planted sweet-basil in mid-field.
     Grown, it swarmed with ants,
     I loved but am not loved,
     I am all confused and helpless. 

The associative leap from the first couplet to the second allows for a great deal of surprise and also helps give the poems a very mysterious and lyrical quality.  Try your hand at just one quatrain, or a bunch of them, and see how you do!"

My response:  Hm, I think I'll sleep on it.  As it turns out, there are several days of media attention to the
tragic bombing at the Boston Marathon, which should have been a happy event, that week, and it's hard
to think of anything else.  Hence the references contrasting the news and my heightened awareness of my own everyday life.  My poem is called:

Don't Even Think of Calling Me

I wrote my to-list late last night,
but by today's ending, have done none of it.
Writing poems on any scrap of paper in sight.
Stunned by mis-fortune of some who've run for it.

I run a few errands, with my purse
at my side, noticing spring and fresh air smells.
Police dogs sniff as the crowd disperses,
clouds of smoke billow while crowd panic swells.

I make cheese brownies for all and sundry,
inhale the aroma and thank my lucky stars,
make some salad, and do the laundry,
thankful for family, table, food, bed, cars.

You fear somebody will think you're no good,
you hide out at home for reasons of your own.
I don't think you're the problem (knock on wood).
Henceforth we're together, so let it be known.

Al El Uiya, Alleluia, Have mercy upon us,
Peace, Om, Shanti, Shalom, mercy accord us,
make us to sing in one key, one accord,
accord us your mercy, Dear God, Oh, my Lord.

Al El Uiya!
                                     ---Shirley Smith Franklin

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