Fall Surprise!!!!

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Yes, BoneSparkblog has been sadly neglected this summer, but I have something yummy for all you fiction writers out there…………….

A BRAND NEW YOUTUBE CHANNEL

featuring a Craft Talks (Writers on Writing) playlist that will blow your socks off.

But don’t let the genre labels fool you, scribblers, these videos have juicy advice that is applicable across categories.

So dig in!! And look for its poetry cousin in the very near future.

Symbols of Life, Rebirth & Renewal (#2sdayPoems)

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Today’s picks are from New England masters, and are poems short in length but long on symbolism–life (blue bowls), rebirth (cherries) and renewal (robin), to name a few.  I also wanted to gift you with a beautiful bit of flash fiction centered around the same symbolism.

BONUS ALERT===> Click Alice Walker’s “My Mother’s Blue Bowl” to read the piece in its entirety.  And be sure to check out more work from Daily Painter Kathy Wochele, whose painting “Cherries” is featured above.

 

THE BLUE BOWL

by Jane Kenyon

Like primitives we buried the cat
with his bowl. Bare-handed
we scraped sand and gravel
back into the hole. It fell with a hiss
and thud on his side,
on his long red fur, the white feathers
that grew between his toes, and his
long, not to say aquiline, nose.
We stood and brushed each other off.
There are sorrows much keener than these.jkenyoncollected
Silent the rest of the day, we worked,
ate, stared, and slept. It stormed
all night; now it clears, and a robin…

 

FULL TEXT HERE (w/ audio)

from Collected Poems (Graywolf, 2005)

 

CHERRIES

by Andrea Cohen

 

In the minute it took
to fetch the blue bowl

from the kitchen
to pick the just-ripe

cherries, the blackbirdsFurs-Not-Mine-front-cover
had come. They picked

the branches clean, ascending
into their own blue bowl.

Lacking wings, I…

 

FULL TEXT HERE
latest collection: Furs Not Mine (Fourway, 2015)

Sunday Sentence 6/19

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 eh

My weekly contribution to David Abrams’ “Sunday Sentence” project in which participants share the best sentence read during the past week “out of context and without commentary.”

There had been a sign to detour in the center of the main street of this town, but cars had obviously gone through, so, believing it was some repair which had been completed, Nicholas Adams drove on through the town along the empty, brick-paved street, stopped by traffic lights that flashed on and off on this traffic-less Sunday, and would be gone next year when the payments on the system were not met; on under the heavy trees of the small town that are a part of your heart if it is your town and you have walked under them, but that are only too heavy, that shut out the sun and that dampen the houses for a stranger; out past the last house and onto the highway that rose and fell straight away ahead with banks of red dirt sliced clearly away and the second-growth timber on both sides.

SOURCE: Ernest Hemingway’s short story “Fathers and Sons” from The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway: The Finca Vigia Edition

 

 

American Landscapes (#2sdayPoems)

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bigapplecow

Roadside “lawn ornament” (Mount Airy, NC)

I recently ran across this image of Mount Airy, NC’s Big Apple Cow in flickr wonderland.  Hope Bill doesn’t mind the link.  It made me think of a poem I’d seen on Poetry Out Loud in April, which led me back to another poem from  Poetry mag (June 2014), which ended in this interesting but somewhat rambling post. There are apples and cows and interior/American landscapes. Well, just read the post.

[ Use the links for full text, author bio and collection info.]

 

IN A LANDSCAPE: I
by John Gallaher

“Are you happy?” That’s a good place to start, or maybe,
“Do you think you’re happy?” with its more negative
tone. Sometimes you’re walking, sometimes falling. That’s part
of the problem too, but not all of the problem. Flowers out the window
or on the windowsill, and so someone brought flowers.
We spend a long time interested in which way the car would
best go in the driveway. Is that the beginning of an answer?
Some way to say who we are?

 

Well, it brings us up to now, at any rate, as the limitations
of structure, which is the way we need for it to be. Invent some muses
and invoke them, or save them for the yard, some animus
to get us going. And what was it Michael said yesterday? That
the committee to do all these good things has an agenda to do all these
other things as well, that we decide are less good in our estimation,
so then we have this difficulty. It just gets to you sometimes. We have
a table of red apples and a table of green apples, and someone asks youinalandscape_bookstore_large
about apples, but that’s too general, you think, as you’ve made several distinctions to get to this place of two tables, two colors. How can that be an answer to anything?…

 

FULL TEXT HERE

from In a Landscape(BOA,2014)

 

TO LIVE WITH A LANDSCAPE

By Constance Urdang

 

      1
Take your boulevards, your Locust Street,
Your Chestnut, Pine, your Olive,
Take your Forest Park and Shaw’s Garden,
Your avenues that lead past street-corner violence,
Past your West End, past your Limit,
To shabby suburban crime,
Vandalism in the parking-lot,
Abductions from the shopping mall—
Like making the same mistake over and over
On the piano or typewriter keys,
Always hitting the wrong note—
How “very alive, very American”
They are, how chockful of metaphysics,
Hellbent to obliterate the wilderness.

 

    2
Learn to live with sycamores,
Their sad, peeling trunks, scabbed all over
With shabby patches, their enormous leaves
In dingy shades of ochre and dun1297937
Rattling like castanets, their roots
Thick as a man’s leg, crawling
Like enormous worms out of the broken pavements,
Continually thrusting themselves up
From pools of shade they make,
Sculpturing the street
With dappled dark and light
As glaucoma, a disease of the eye,
Makes the world more beautiful
With its mysterious rainbows…

 

 

FULL TEXT HERE
from The Lone Woman and Others (Univ. of Pittsburgh, 1980)

Sunday Sentence 6/12

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 cfael

My weekly contribution to David Abrams’ “Sunday Sentence” project in which participants share the best sentence read during the past week “out of context and without commentary.”

She told me she had a wild-animal sort of babyhood.

SOURCE: Kaye Gibbons‘ novel Charms for the Easy Life

 

 

2 Views on the Oyster (#2sdayPoems)

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oysters

The phenomenal poets Anne Sexton & Ellen Bass bring two different views on the much-loved, summer favorite:

OYSTERS

by Anne Sexton

Oysters we ate,
sweet blue babies,
twelve eyes looked up at me,
running with lemon and Tabasco.
I was afraid to eat this father-food
and Father laughed and
drank down his martini,
clear as tears.
It was a soft medicine
that came from the sea into my mouth,annesexton
moist and plump.
I swallowed.
It went down like a large pudding.
Then I ate one o’clock and two o’clock.
Then I laughed and then we laughed
and let me take note –
there was a…

FULL TEXT HERE

from Selected Poems of Anne Sexton

 

REINCARNATION

by Ellen Bass

Who would believe in reincarnation
if she thought she would return as
an oyster? Eagles and wolves
are popular. Even domesticated cats
have their appeal. It’s not terribly distressing
to imagine being Missy, nibbling
kibble and lounging on the windowsill.
But I doubt the toothsome oyster has everLikeaBeggar200px
been the totem of any shaman
fanning the Motherpeace Tarot
or smudging with sage.
Yet perhaps we could do worse
than aspire to be a plump bivalve. Humbly,
the oyster persists in….

 

FULL TEXT HERE (w/ audio)
latest collection: Like a Beggar

Sunday Sentence 6/5

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 haruki

My weekly contribution to David Abrams’ “Sunday Sentence” project in which participants share the best sentence read during the past week “out of context and without commentary.”

It is the inherent right of all writers to experiment with the possibilities of language in every way they can imagine—without the adventurous spirit, nothing new can ever be born.

SOURCE: Haruki Murakami‘s dual novellas Wind/Pinball (introduction)

 

 

#NationalPoetryMonth’16 Round-up (Day 30)

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30

Whether you made it here fast or slow, Congratulations, poemers! It’s the final round-up of the best prompts, poems and news from your #NaPoWriMo/#NPM16/#NaPoMo /#NationalPoetryMonth/#poemaday hashtags.

Best of the Prompts

NaPoWriMo’s “Translation Challenge”
NotaLiteraryJournal’s “Places You’ve Never Been prompt”
Poetic Asides P-A-D “Dead-End prompt”
Poetry School’s “Leaving Home prompt”
Mariah Wilson’s “Celebration prompt”
QuillsEdge Press’ “Hands prompt”
Found Poetry’s “Phone-words prompt”
Apparatus Mag’s “Endings& Beginnings prompt”
Jo Bell’s “Love prompt”
Imaginary Garden’s “Maypole prompt”
Chronically Creative’s “Thief prompt”

Poems I Have Loved (Tweeters’ Shares)

Sara Teasdale “There Will Come Soft Rains”
Lorna Dowell “Window Display”
Eavan Boland “The Pomegranate”
Marcus Jackson “Pardon My Heart”
Bao-Long Chu “Durian”
Erika L. Sánchez “A Woman Runs on the First Day of Spring”
Samiya Bashir “John Henry’s First Real Swing” w/commentary
Pablo Neruda “Keeping Quiet” (read by Sylvia Boorstein)

Miscellaneous

Nearly Unbearable Grace: The Poetry of Joy Harjo (Univ of Cali TV)
Poetry Publishers On Their Favorite Lines (Bookslinger)

**Poets, if you would like to be featured in 2sDay Poems, have your collection reviewed, guest post in the Poetry Lab or blog on any of the Thoughts on Poetry topics, including Foremother Friday or Small Press Interviews, drop me a line at  bonesparkblog@yahoo.com.

#NationalPoetryMonth’16 Round-up (Day 29)

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29

DAY TWENTY-NINE of the best prompts, poems and news from your  #NaPoWriMo/#NPM16/#NaPoMo /#NationalPoetryMonth/#poemaday hashtags.

Best of the Prompts

NaPoWriMo’s “I Remember prompt”
NotaLiteraryJournal’s “Word Salad prompt”
Poetic Asides P-A-D “Haphazard prompt”
Poetry School’s “Britney Spears/Kylie Minogue prompt”
Mariah Wilson’s “Failures prompt”
QuillsEdge Press’ “Deity Senses prompt”
Found Poetry’s “Inexplicable text prompt”
Apparatus Mag’s “Exploring Song prompt”
Indiana Humanities’ “Ars Poetica prompt”
Mary Carroll-Hackett’s “Walls prompt”
Imaginary Garden’s “Instapoetry  prompt”
The Writer’s Center’s “Puberty & the Cosmos prompt”

Poems I Have Loved (Tweeters’ Shares)

Catherine Doty “Breathing Underwater”
Naomi Shihab Nye “Boy and Egg)
Zooey Ghostly “we laid together by the lake/we laid alone by the lake”

Miscellaneous

7 Poets Share Their Favorite Words (Merriam-Webster)
Where to Begin to Revise a Poem Podcast (AWP Panel 2015)
Interview w/ Poet Jo McDougall (Writer’s Almanac)
From the Fishouse 12th Anniversay Celebration/Reading (AWP 2016)
Jen Fitzgerald’s Poetry Mixtape #4 (The Rumpus)

**Poets, if you would like to be featured in 2sDay Poems, have your collection reviewed, guest post in the Poetry Lab or blog on any of the Thoughts on Poetry topics, including Foremother Friday or Small Press Interviews, drop me a line at  bonesparkblog@yahoo.com.

#NationalPoetryMonth’16 Round-up (Day 28)

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28

DAY TWENTY-EIGHT of the best prompts, poems and news from your  #NaPoWriMo/#NPM16/#NaPoMo /#NationalPoetryMonth/#poemaday hashtags.

Best of the Prompts

NaPoWriMo’s “Story Poems prompt”
NotaLiteraryJournal’s “Tritina Challenge”
Poetic Asides P-A-D “Important __ prompt”
Poetry School’s “Proverb/Aphorism prompt”
Mariah Wilson’s “Alliteration prompt”
QuillsEdge Press’ “Third Wish  prompt”
Found Poetry’s “Intersections prompt”
Apparatus Mag’s “Humor prompt”
Indiana Humanities’ “Exploring Color prompt”
Mary Carroll-Hackett’s “What Children Know prompt”
Imaginary Garden’s “Real Bio  prompt”
Kate Foley’s “Fluency prompt”

Poems I Have Loved (Tweeters’ Shares)

Linda Hogan “The History of Red” (video)
Jean Bleakney “On Seeing a Poet at the Filling Station”
Derek Walcott “Love After Love” (read by Jon Kabatt-Zinn)

Miscellaneous

Poet Jericho Brown on Questioning the Status Quo (NPR)
Top 5 Poetry Apps Android &Apple
Call For Work: NightBalletPress Poetric Tribute to Prince
Maureen Doallas On a Trio of Upcoming Art&Poetry Related Exhibitions

**Poets, if you would like to be featured in 2sDay Poems, have your collection reviewed, guest post in the Poetry Lab or blog on any of the Thoughts on Poetry topics, including Foremother Friday or Small Press Interviews, drop me a line at  bonesparkblog@yahoo.com.