April 12, 2016

Monday, February 24, 2014

Rhapsody in NYC: 2014 Poetry Project

Writerly Friends, thanks for all of the birthday wishes. I had a wonderful weekend at the winter SCBWI conference, held in one of my favorite cities: NYC.

Because I took a birthday break, it is Day 20 of the Pantone® Poetry Project. You can read a full project description at this post.

Today’s colors are Silver Bullet and Rhapsody. 
Day 20 Silver Bullet
Pantone ®  17-3933

Day 20 Rhapsody
Pantone ®  16-3817

Being in New York this weekend brought out my funky fashion sense. Check out my scripty nails.

The perfect press-on nails for a writers' conference.

This poem describes what I would wear, walking around the Big Apple, if I were really, really brave:

By Laura Shovan

Pants – a purple rhapsody,
silver heels, rock concert tee,
velvet jacket’s fuzzy feels,
hair slicked back, as smooth as eels.
Be prepared, that’s what you’ll see
if you’re stepping out with me.

Michelle Heidenrich Barnes of Today's Little Ditty, imagines me in a rhapsody of tulle for my birthday celebration:

There once was a poet named Laura
who fancied a Sea Foam fedora
and Rhapsody gown
which she wore about town
to showcase her Pantone-rich aura.

by Michelle Heidenrich Barnes

As you know, Michelle and I often go head to head in limerick challenges. When it comes to clothing, her taste is hands-down better than mine. (Plus, I want that hat.)


I did not mortify my BFF Michelle with the outfit I described above (though the jacket is real, and black – one of my favorite pieces). We were properly dolled up, though not in gowns and fedoras, to see the musical Chicago.

Speaking of music, here is Linda Baie’s parody of “Home on the Range” for her Silver Bullet poem.

Forgive Me, Roy Rogers

(Thanks to Daniel E.Kelley for Home On The Range)

Oh, I yearned for a home, where Roy Rogers roamed
and Gene Autry sang us a song,
where Dale Rogers had a shirt that was plaid,
and the days of play I loved were long.

Home, home on the range
in the summertime I played every day,
where seldom I heard a discouraging word
as I galloped and galloped away.

I pretended to be a wild western girl
with my holster and gun at my side.
I galloped and whooped, and twirled lasso loops
imagining horses to ride.

My favorite of all was the writer’s sure call
and the magic of words that I read,
when I learned of the best warrior found in the west
the Lone Ranger! my hero instead.

I heigh-hoed along, singing his song
and loved that he did what was right.
Like the story foretold of Lone Ranger bold,
left silver bullets as I rode out of sight.

Linda Baie © All right reserved

I took Silver Bullet more literally in my second poem for today.

By Laura Shovan

No one sees the bullet’s silver,
its dull, unpolished lilac.
Who would hold a metal bud
pinch it with thumb
and forefinger, roll it round
to see a small reflection--
one’s own face? A bullet’s
place is in the quiet dark,
the chamber of a gun,
or blooming
in the chamber of a heart.

Finally, we have two beautiful nature poems for Silver Bullet and Rhapsody.

Margaret Simon tells us, “After I wrote this poem, I went out for a walk and guess what I saw in the sky?”

Photo by Margaret Simon
of Reflections on the Teche

Sky Rhapsody
By Margaret Simon

Wispy cirrus curls
spin like a silver bullet.
Contrail lines
crisscross—ice crystals
a rhapsody*
in the sky.

*rhapsody from Merriam-Webster: a piece of music that is meant to express a lot of emotion and does not have a regular form.

And I’ll leave you with Diane Mayr’s hopeful poem.

Lilac Rhapsody
by Diane Mayr

Syringa vulgaris? 
There's nothing vulgar 
about a Lilac in June
bursting forth in glorious
purple, lilac, or white.
It's heady stuff, her fragrance.
And heady, her vernal tune--
Summer is coming!
Summer is coming!
Summer is coming soon!

I know some mythology-loving friends out there have been waiting for tomorrow. We’ve got the god of the ocean himself, Poseidon, to write about. Choose his mood: angry Tornado, or playful Aqua Splash.

Day 21 Poseidon
Pantone ®  19-4033

Day 21 Tornado
Pantone ®  18-3907
Day 21 Aqua Splash
Pantone ®  14-4812
I'm expecting some stormy writing tomorrow, everyone. As always, leave your response in the comments or send it to me via email.

Yesterday, at SCBWI, Kate Messner gave an amazing speech about the power of failure. She told a story about living with imperfection by trying, and trying, and trying again. Sometimes focusing on quantity, not quantity, of our writing is a way to honor the practice and give ourselves an opportunity to try new things, fail, sometimes succeed, and grow. To that end, I'm still planning to announce Pantone ® prizes for frequent fliers contributors on Day 28.


patricia said...

Thanks for the bullets and rhapsodies. I will have a Poseidon tomorrow.

Linda B said...

All beautiful, everyone. Laura & Michelle, you must have a personal clothing connection with both your 'ditties' about dressing to the nines, or at least Laura is dressing to the nines! That second poem from you Laura, is like a punch in the stomach. And Diane and Margaret, beauty today and beauty coming. Nice to see how you both said it.

Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

I think your fashion sense rocks, Ms. Shovan... and I can't believe you found a sea foam fedora! Enjoyed today's poems, as I do every installment (even if I don't always comment)!

Patricia VanAmburg said...

haha author amok--totally unable to pass up Poseidon. Thanks.

Gender Identity

Poseidon tornadoes the
surface in an aqua splash.
Wait. That is so Disney.

Poseidon mirrors his niece
Athena—she the mini-Zeus
dressed in drag—he the true
vestige of Mother God.
Athena of the harness—
Poseidon the horse—
riding sea waves—
mane billowing serpents—
then plunging into
the briny female deep.

Stephanie Lemghari said...

Hi, Laura. I wrote this poem a few years ago about my father who passed away (it was published in the LPR). The 26th is his birthday so it would be really nice if you are able to publish it on your blog for Poseidon day. -Stephanie Lemghari


When I was a child, I stumbled on pebbles while playing
on the beach and fell into salty water. The sea
to steal my breath, but my father fished me up like
his trident arms carrying me safely to land.

Now his body betrays his mortality after all,
as, pebble by pebble, the tide pulls him from shore.
I call to him to stay, to close his ears to siren song,
to trace a different ending in the sand.

Stephanie Lemghari said...

PS: my line breaks didn't copy properly because the lines are too long for the blog comments. ;)

Diane Mayr said...

Stephanie, that's such a powerful and moving poem. It made me a little verklempt.

Author Amok said...

Stephanie, thank you for sharing your beautiful poem again. I know that my readers will appreciate it.