Perhaps I was not cut out for the Slice of Life Challenge this year. On Day 1, I wrote a poem and on Day 30, a response poem to the responses to the poem. It is quite perplexing.
It’s not that I needed 29 days to think of something else to write. There are actually 24 new poems in my notebook and roughly 200 filled pages with the scribing of my ink this month. My notebook is bursting at the seams. In fact, I may run out of pages before tomorrow is done. I’m trying not to brag, but my pen has this down.
But, much of the time, the words do not have the desire to creep out of the safekeeping of the notebook. I try to lure them out, but they are shy. Tired. Cozy and safe nestled between the covers of March 2023. Oh dread, I hear the voice of Eeyore. And, Piglet assuring me we did the best we could. And, that I still wrote.
And, such I time I had! So much play happened in the notebook this month! I cannot wait to tell you!
But, not until April – when the month of poetry begins.
That’s when the poems all wake up and fight for their time in the spotlight.
Hmmmm. . . I maybe just started at the wrong month. 🙂
A first Slice of Life came out as an apology. Unknowing what to begin with, a poem wriggled out. If you haven’t the time or the energy or the wherewithal to figure out your way through my typewriter malfunctions (misspellings are my own), I’ve edited it below, with a few revisions, for your convenience and efficiencies.
I apologize up front
as you make a split second decision
to click on the link
that brought you to these words.
I know your day is busy
fraught with to-do lists and wanna/should-do's, too
your precious time is just that -
But, I just need to let you know
there is no glitter or gold here
no words of wisdom either
or tips or tricks, hacks or shortcuts
on how to do whatever it is
you ought to do today.
All I have to offer are
random words from this old machine,
she skips every now and then
and is missing the apostrophe key
But, oh she is quite adept
at knowing spasms of delight,
admirations and whispers of bliss
or a split second moment of awe.
So, it is with great regret
and sincere apologies
bad spelling and fading ink
that you had to
these painstaking words on this page
but, they are all I have to give.
#a not so good poem by shari daniels 2023
It was Margaret’s poem in my inbox that ignited my spark to receive poem today. She nudged me over to Ruth’s lovely page, who is hosting Poetry Friday today and inviting us to give a go at a recipe poem.
Ellen Bass, my poet guide this month, along with Wendell Barry, has been also offering advice this month. The Epistolary Poem, a poem written as a letter, a form has been shaping poems in my notebook this month.
Could I combine the two? The recipe poem and the letter poem?
Perhaps . . .
Thank you to Margaret, Ruth, Ellen, my husband’s adoration of the food I cook for him and, his mother’s love.
If you’d like to read more poems, or add your own, head over to Ruth’s page to read a few more recipe poems. Be sure to fill your cup of coffee first.
Jacqueline Suskin, this morning, teaches us about writing Manifesting Poems. The kind of writing that puts our dreams, wishes and hopes for our lives on paper and lets the universe know so it can begin rearranging our path and give us signs in where to go. She shares a poem of of her own and titles it, What I Want is Family. This felt like an invitation.
So, I wrote my own “What I Want” poem. Taking to my typewriter to see if the keys could help, I got it all down. Afterwards, my laptop went to work, cleaning it up, with a few revisions and edits. It’s still pretty drafty, not very good.
But it feels true.
What I Really Want is Love
I really want just love - all of it.
The deep love one feels for another
you know what I'm talking about -
the kind where that soul being you chose
for your partner and you synchronously
roll over under the covers
and he tucks your blanket in snuggly
behind your back, that spot
you can't reach where cool swaths of air
swirl under bringing the chills.
He protects that.
But, I want more than this,
I want everyone to have that kind of love
Maybe if only from a pet -
that will do.
More than even this, I want everyone
to walk around will that kind of love inside them
hearts so wide open
radiating that love
spewing it out
all over the world everywhere they go.
To the trees, the hills, the sky,
the fields, the flowers, the insects even.
And, to other humans
especially those not like them.
That's a special kind of love.
If we all that that kind of love
to fill the world with
we'd know to protect it with all our hearts,
do everything we could to save
for our children, and theirs.
It would be only then, I could leave this earth
knowing I loved enough for that
October 2022 draft SD
I’ve been reading and writing from Jacqueline Suskin’s book, A Poem A Day, and finding meaning in the smallest of moments.
“Meaning is a choice. . . the trick is to be fully aware of your choices. . . what’s valuable to you isn’t random; it’s a crafted lens that you see through, that you add to and take away from willingly, throughout your lifetime. You can delve into the details surrounding you and measure the might of sacredness in each. . . anything can be holy.”
I love this about poetry. How it heightens your sense of sacred moments and how the practice cultivates an awareness so much so that we “saturate our lives with meaning”.
And, of course, since Jacqueline uses a vintage typewriter to type her poems, I was inspired to do the same. Mine has a few hiccups that emphasize even more imperfections of my poems.
Monday, October 10, 2022, Indigenous Peoples' Day
Yet some people are still calling this day
Columbus Day ~
And, we wonder why we need World Mental Health Day.
This land of the free and the brave,
rich and poor, black and white and all colors in between,
injustice and color blindness,
powerlessness, cogs in the systems of systems,
phone bills and school loans, mortgages and rent,
global warming and division; masks and unmasked.
But sure ~ meditate they say.
So, I did.
And, then I walked over to my neighbors',
she, too, was meditating.
Ten things I try to feel with my senses
to quiet my chattering mind, she said.
Me too, I replied,
here's some bread I made for you,
and I handed her the round loaf of
crusty artesian bread
I'd made in the cast iron pan
my husband bought for me.
We whined about unfinished window trim
and how many times we have to ask.
I'm making spaghetti, my mom's recipe
and my husband is hunting, she smiled,
I'll text you when it's done.
Okay, I accepted the invitation.
And, I walked back home through the path
in the woods
between her house and mine
and I wrote a poem
while I waited for her dinner bell.
Draft 2022 Shari Daniels
Writing and sharing a poem a day ~
"The writing is inhaling and the sharing is exhaling.
They don't have to be good, they just have to be true."
~Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer