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i swear all the birds will live until the end



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Sat Apr 11, 2020 8:31 pm
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niteowl says...



The phonebook fish poem is amazing. 14 is so sad but has such excellent imagery. But 12 has to be my favorite, because it's just so real and sad but somehow hopeful.
"You do ill if you praise, but worse if you censure, what you do not understand." Leonardo Da Vinci

<YWS><R1>
  





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Sat Apr 11, 2020 11:14 pm
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BluesClues says...



My faves:

- spring in past-tense
- who is your prophet
(these two were also v me poems, which could just be all the bird imagery)
- the night is enormous, but i know better now
Spoiler! :
I definitely understand feeling weird about writing about your family or honestly just really personal experiences in general - I think that's why I stress about poetry so much. But this is beautiful and moving.


I also love the physical structure you chose for anxious | breathing - before I even looked at the title, before I even read it, it put me in mind of anxiety just because of how it looked.
  





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Sun Apr 12, 2020 12:36 am
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Liminality says...



Hi, @alliyah! I've been loving the metaphors in these last few poems. Robins being prophets, people being 'phonebook fish' . . .

I also like how the stanza length decreases in 'when the robins return, i hope i remember', building up to this short, punchy climax. I think it's great you're experimenting here and there with both formatting and subject matter.

Cheers!
  





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Sun Apr 12, 2020 6:25 am
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alliyah says...



Spoiler! :
Thank you all for your kind comments!
@niteowl <3 I think I'm definitely going to return to that fish-phonebook one, because something in the nonsense is starting to make some sense to me - it's a fun poem!
@BluesClues - thank you!! <3 Bird imagery is also my favorite! And I'm so happy you felt like the anxiety one's structure was working - I really liked the idea of that one being a cycle/spiral for that one because it fits for how I imagine breathing/spiraling/hyperventilating all being pictured. It initially just had one upside down bird - for the background, but I decided that looked too "dead" and I'm still determined to avoid dead birds this month.
@Liminality - thank you again for all of your comments! I've used 'robins as prophets' in a couple other poems and love the idea of it - and I'm going to thank my sleep-brain for "phonebook fish" because I have no idea where that came from. Thanks for the comments on formatting too! I really like to play around with formatting - especially during NaPo. I'm surprising myself with having such different subject matter in all of these (and slightly regretful that it doesn't make the thread feel very cohesive) but I think I'm having fun having a little bit more diversity in my writing this year. :)


16. while it is still dark

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene
went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.

- John 20:1

i keep thinking of Mary Magdalene,
how she must have felt carrying
jars of spices meant only to mask
the stench of death, remembering
in the echo to her steps the striking of a hammer
to a nail, the savior's last words, "forgive them"
seeming quaint and almost hollow,
walking in the night to the empty tomb
expecting only to encounter death -

the days run dark here too,
and the jars we carry to mask our pain
lay heavy in our arms, God's words
ring dissonant in this spring born silent,
but the path into the tomb is not one
we take alone, no, tonight our footsteps
bear the sound of saintly echoes,
and we encounter not a corpse,
but the resurrected Christ whose body
carries the mark of heavy burdens
and knows what it is to enter death
who receives us, like Mary stooped at the tomb,
by greeting us on our journey, by calling
our names, and calling us into the light.
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  





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Mon Apr 13, 2020 9:24 pm
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alliyah says...



17. neighborly concern
Image

Spoiler! :

text version:
hello rain gutter-pigeon
how are you today?
i've been trying to figure out
a delicate way to say this,
but a rain gutter is a horrible
place to raise a family;
it's just not safe, and it's been
storming a lot lately, and i'm worried
about so many things and lately
i’m feeling anxious at the thought of your nest getting drenched
in the daily down pour, look
i know we're in quarantine
and you're a bird and i'm a
human but i'm getting lonely
and i wouldn't mind if you
moved in, you don't have
to, but i enjoy seeing you ruffle
and wake each morning
and could use the company
so it's really no intrusion,
besides i'm writing poems
about birds this spring,
and i've made a promise
to myself that every bird
will live, and honestly
i could use some inspiration.


also there's clearly not enough pigeon doodles shared so far in this thread (i may or may not have edited this post 4 times already because i keep changing the pigeon picture)
Image
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  





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Tue Apr 14, 2020 1:54 am
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Liminality says...



Hello @alliyah! Looks like we're still keeping the birds alive :)

while it is still dark -> Again, I liked the use of structure in this poem; the two-stanza construction, with the second 'answering' the first, reminds me a bit of a Petrarchan sonnet. I read this one out loud and really enjoyed the rhythm; the line breaks serve to give certain images an extra punch, like "the stench of death".

neighborly concern -> This piece was adorable! My favourite lines were the first two "hello rain-gutter pigeon// how are you today?". I thought they set the tone of the poem well. I also liked how you used the repetitive "and"s to convey the sense of worry.

Cheers!
  





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Tue Apr 14, 2020 8:01 pm
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alliyah says...



Spoiler! :
@Liminality - Yes the birds are doing well! I'm really happy with the sound and little bit of rhyme in "while it was still dark" I'm glad you enjoyed the structure/rhythm too! :) And thanks for the comments on my pigeon one - I'm a huge fan of too many conjunction - both in real life, and in poetry!


18. just fragments

Image

other fragments / mini-poems / watch your step:

fragment 1
Please fire alarm, tell our neighbors I'm baking,
I'm sure they'd love to know, screech on! screech on!
Here, could I open the windows for you?
The whole street could hear your song.
Maybe they'll come join my kitchen and
we can have a party over burned cookies.


fragment 2
you were too much all at once
and i left you dreaming to the sound
of fire alarms

fragment 3
[can we forget the part
where we pretended
to be vacant bodies]
i'm not so sure forgetting
is much better, because
that's where you always
leave me.


fragment 4
all song-birds are prophets
harbingers of spring’s imminence
and so with some religious-fervor
we try to crucify them

chicken, turkey, quail;
good for a Sunday dinner
but it’s those song-birds
we wish we could kill

happiness after all is dissonant
when there’s snow on the ground.
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  





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Thu Apr 16, 2020 3:34 am
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alliyah says...



19. God; she is a Mother hen

And Jesus said, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing." Matthew 23:37


Image

Spoiler! :

Okay I think my chicken doodling skills are better than my pigeon doodling skills - good to know! :]

author comment: For those uncomfortable with feminine imagery & pronouns for the divine, I used to also not be quite sure about it so can understand that it might be uncomfortable for some, that's fine, hopefully we can agree to disagree on this one. - Believing that God is not just "male" or a projection of patriarchal control is pretty important to my own view of who God is. And I'd recommend "She Who Is" by Elizabeth A Johnson, if anyone's interested in reading about about this sort of thing from a scriptural, Christian perspective.
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  





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Fri Apr 17, 2020 4:36 am
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alliyah says...



20. poetry in plain sight

Image
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  





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Sat Apr 18, 2020 5:03 am
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alliyah says...



21. i'm still very homesick

Image

22. i'm running away

Image
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  





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Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:45 pm
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PrincessInk says...



ahh I think the last poem may be one of my favorites of yours. I really love the way you structured this in a letter - all the wanderlust and longing and magic in it and I think it really struck a chord in me <3
always daydreaming, always clumsy
  





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Sun Apr 19, 2020 5:14 am
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alliyah says...



Spoiler! :
@PrincessInk thank you! I love epistolary poems, and I'm glad that one came across that way - I was a little afraid it could be taken kind of darkly? But I definitely was going for sad/longing rather than sad/defeated. Thank you for stopping by to comment! <3


23. the sky's too far

Image

paper crane poem from 2018
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  





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Sun Apr 19, 2020 8:54 pm
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alliyah says...



24. where have we gone, we do not know, we only wait to return

for @CaptainJack

Image

Spoiler! :

When I chose the theme of birds, I wasn't sure quite what I wanted to do or where it would go, or if I'd be able to think of very many bird-related things during April. CaptainJack always inspires me with their endless poetic creativity and upon hearing I was writing about birds - immediately sends me a picture of these giant extinct human-sized penguins. They're haunting. Take a look at the wikipedia articles about them. I knew not how I would incorporate this into my NaPo - but it has been done. Thanks Jack, for your encouragement, humor, and poetic-inspo! <3

CHECK THIS OUT:
big penguin article
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  





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Mon Apr 20, 2020 1:17 am
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Liminality says...



I adore the images in "poetry in plain sight"! how they just grow out of each other with the enjambments is really a delight to read. The metaphor of an origami crane in "the sky's too far" is a really creative way to work with the bird motif. I also like how the penguins in this last poem come in at the very end - a fun little surprise! Giant penguins sound fantastic, and I love how you've drawn them in the doodle. <3
  





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Mon Apr 20, 2020 2:57 am
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alliyah says...



@Liminality Thank you for your thoughtful comments!
Spoiler! :
(I used to fold up origami cranes and leave them all over, so I always think they're kind of magical and I'm glad you're enjoying the formatting and doodles!) fun note on that last poem I was definitely inspired by the stories of "nature returning" that people keep bringing up about all the self-isolation stuff; that while the humans are indoors, pollution is fading, turtles are thriving etc. -> there was a great meme on Facebook of a cow returning to the ocean. And there's something both inspiring and unsettling about all those images, because on one hand "yay, at least something's thriving if I'm not" and then on the other-hand it makes me feel kind of "yuck" like where's my place in the world? Does life really continue while I'm stuck in my apartment? Is my net-effect in the world good/bad, and what makes it that way. So I thought it'd be interesting to reflect on what else we might be missing while we're inside, but blow it out of proportion resulting in dino-chickens returning highlighting our disconnect with nature. // I don't think the poem captured all that! but hopefully at least got a bit of the "this seems off" feeling. XD
maybe i make up colors for poetic cadence, but i don't think i can ever love someone who doesn't understand that teal is a different color than dark cyan
  








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