Northern Drive to St Lucy

Northern Drive to St Lucy
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Sunday, April 19, 2009

Poem for President Obama

Praise song for the day
(Elizabeth Alexander, Poet)

Each day we go about our business, walking past each other, catching each others' eyes or not, about to speak or speaking. All about us is noise. All about us is noise and bramble, thorn and din, each one of our ancestors on our tongues. Someone is stitching up a hem, darning a hole in a uniform, patching a tire, repairing the things in need of repair.

Someone is trying to make music somewhere with a pair of wooden spoons on an oil drum with cello, boom box, harmonica, voice.

A woman and her son wait for the bus.

A farmer considers the changing sky; A teacher says, "Take out your pencils. Begin."

We encounter each other in words, words spiny or smooth, whispered or declaimed; words to consider, reconsider.

We cross dirt roads and highways that mark the will of someone and then others who said, "I need to see what's on the other side; I know there's something better down the road."

We need to find a place where we are safe; We walk into that which we cannot yet see.

Say it plain, that many have died for this day. Sing the names of the dead who brought us here, who laid the train tracks, raised the bridges, picked the cotton and the lettuce, built brick by brick the glittering edifices they would then keep clean and work inside of.

Praise song for struggle; praise song for the day. Praise song for every hand-lettered sign; The figuring it out at kitchen tables.

Some live by "Love thy neighbor as thy self."

Others by first do no harm, or take no more than you need.

What if the mightiest word is love, love beyond marital, filial, national. Love that casts a widening pool of light. Love with no need to preempt grievance.

In today's sharp sparkle, this winter air, anything can be made, any sentence begun.

On the brink, on the brim, on the cusp --
praise song for walking forward in that light.

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Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Forms of Poetry: Cinquain

Today is the first day of April and ushers in Poetry Month. I shall be writing poems each day of this month in recognition of Poetry Month. However, for the first twenty-five days of April, I shall probably compose poems with themes suitable for the Police Wives Association of Barbados. There is a reason for this. The Police Wives Association of Barbados is celebrating its Silver Anniversary.

Among the things I like about poetry is that it can be crafted in many forms and styles. Therefore it is important to understand the meaning and purpose for the diversity. This understanding allows the wise selection of the best form and style for the particular poetic purpose in mind. Today, I have selected to use the Cinquain form.

The original Cinquain was the brain-child of the female American poet, Adelaide Crapsey. She based it on the Japanese Haiku. When she died a single woman at the age of 37 from tuberculosis her poems were published posthumously in 1915. Her Cinquain form is made up of twenty-two words and is purely syllabic unrhymed lines. Two forms of the Cinquain have flowed out of her inspiration and they follow a strict pattern. You'll see the marked differences as you analyze their structures shown as follows:

Crapsey Cinquain Form

Line 1 = 2 syllables
Line 2 = 4 syllables
Line 3 = 6 syllables
Line 4 = 8 syllables
Line 5 = 2 syllables

Cinquain Forms which have emerged are shown in the following patterns:

( a)

Line 1 = One word title
Line 2 = Two words that describe the subject of the title
Line 3 = Three words related to the subject (use verbs)
Line 4 = Four to five words that express feelings about the subject (not a complete sentence)
Line 5 = Same word as Line 1, a synonym or a similar word.


Line 1 = A noun
Line 2 = Two adjectives describing Line 1
Line 3 = Three -ing words (verbs) relating to Line I
Line 4 = A phrase, or complete sentence that relates to Line 1
Line 5 = Another word for the noun

Click here to go to Cinquain poem

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Haiti Under Rubble from 7.0 Earthquake

Natural disasters whenever and wherever they occur impact on all of our lives. The Good Book says we are our brothers and sisters keepers lead by the Holy Spirit. Hence, we must do our part when disaster shows its ugly face. Any assistance, great or small, given from generous and loving hearts has equal weight. I'm passing on this information I received that Barbadians can go to First Caribbean Bank to donate to the Disaster Relief Fund for Haiti. The banking information is shown below:

First Caribbean Bank Account--2645374-- Cheques can be written to: HELP #2645374

For more information click on this link

My thoughts and prayers are with the people of Haiti.

Reading Poetry