Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Poetry Challenge #24: Three-Legged Chair Poem

Before we get started this week, please do check out last week's tributes to the tragedy and heroic efforts we've witnessed in Haiti. You can read them here.

This week's challenge is once again borrowed from a terrific website, ReadWritePoem. They have offered up the picture to the right of this paragraph and encouraged their readers to devise a poem trying to explain or describe what is happening here. Why is the figure wearing a hood? How did the chair get there? Why is it broken? Why is the figure contemplating the chair? What is holding the chair up? You can answer any, all, or none of these questions, just use the picture as your inspiration this week.

Here is my poem:

Standing Still

Sometimes silence is the loudest sound.
This land has given up every trace
of life, save what I am clinging to
deep within myself.

My hood drawn up against
the whipping wind,
I cannot bear to break my gaze.
This chair appears useless,
yet in all its brokenness
it defies gravity and common sense
merely by remaining upright.

The same could be said
for certain human spirits.
Grief, disability, mental struggle
may be their “missing leg,”
yet they remain standing
in spite of all that would see them fall.

Merely looking at this oddity
gives me hope, regardless
of my own local tragedies.
It is almost as if someone placed it here
just for me to stumble upon,
a small sign
that all will be right with the world
if I can hang on.

So, take a look, have a think, and please share what you come up with here!
Photo credit: "December 21, 2007: #25" by Sepulture {Mood Disorder}.


cicely said...

Somewhat Dali-esque,
This wild, tripodal chair has
Mesmerized its prey.

paige said...

i LOVE cicely's! Why does that make me laugh??

Minerva said...

Cicely--that poem is an example of why I really appreciate your contributions here. I took many more words to try to encapsulate what I saw in the picture and you were able to distill yours down to an efficient haiku. 1,000 points for your excellent economy.

cicely said...

But yours says something meaningful and optimistic about human nature. Mine is just...quirky.

Quirk, quirk, quirk.

I like that word.

But quirkiness is not depth.

I am but a shallow mockery of a quasi-poet. :D

Ha! A name for the (hypothetical) title of my (non-existent) corpus of Undying Epic Poetry----

Tonight, On Limited-Attention-Span Theatre...

Julie Jordan Scott said...

beautiful. There are definite similarities in our poems... I found this prompt so engaging.

paige said...

kristine - i was on here last night in the wee hours when i (again) couldn't sleep & came up *completely* empty handed... i may have to wait for the next challenge... i had some sort of variation of Hebrews 11 going around in my mind, but i went & tried to work on it & came up dry. :( Boooo.

Minerva said...

Paige--the teacher's soul in me wants to encourage you to keep trying...if your first idea doesn't pan out, try something else...but of course it's totally up to you :)

Anonymous said...

You okay, Minerva?

(And Google has forgotten me, again. *sigh*)


Minerva said...

Cicely--thanks for your concern. I am fine, just having a hard time getting motivated to write before my brain congeals in the evening of late. I will be back this week, I promise!

Anonymous said...

Some encouragement
May be what is called for, here.
Doing my poor best:

'Momming' is hard work,
But, though I know it sounds trite,
That hard work pays off.

The difficulties,
Causes of today's distress,
Are tomorrow's laughs,

While today's chuckles
Are unlikely to grow stale
With repetition.

(Another subject;
Looks like clean-up is called for--
Spammer on aisle 10!)


Minerva said...

Many thanks, Cicely. I really must remember to try and post before all wits leave me, around 9pm of late. I have the best intentions of laying down a post today at some point. Maybe I'll have to start doing them in the afternoon?? :)

Also, I deleted that spam-post. At least I couldn't read most of it, since it was not written in English characters. :)