April 12, 2016

Thursday, February 26, 2015

2015 Sound Poem Project Day 25: Ugandan Panpipe

It’s Day 25 of Author Amok's 2015 poem-a-day project. We are spending February writing in response to sounds.  

For a full description of the project and how to participate, please read this post. I hope you'll join us. I'll continue posting poems from Day 25 as they come in. Thanks to everyone who has sent in poems so far. We've got more world music today, poets. 

Our Day 25 prompt is a Ugandan panpipes.

This isn't our sound clip today, but I offered it as a second option. Enjoy another sample of music from Uganda.

Linda Baie of Teacher Dance opted to write in response to the video.

Sitya Loss – Happiness

adolescent boys
dancing free,
strut and dubstep, prance and jump.
No matter where in the world
they be,
boys are boys--
And girls, girls also be
in the world of dance,
she alone,


Linda Baie © All Rights Reserved

Charles Waters captures the joy of children dancing to music in his poem.

Flutes decorate the air
As pearls of African beauty
Tap dance barefoot on faded grass,
Chocolate arms glistening,
As Grey Crowned Crows, in
Mohawk bristled glory, bustle about
 In packs while kids, smacking their lips
On plates of bananas, beans,
Spinach, laugh at a joke
Only they can understand.

(c) Charles Waters 2015 all rights reserved.

The original clip for today has a frenetic beat, which you can see reflected in the next set of poems. First, here is Patricia VanAmburg's contribution.

by Patricia VanAmburg

The day his EKG danced
he heard the rhythms of Uganda—
blown breath of stopped flutes
echoing like empty bottles—
continuous rattle of beaded gourds—
cymbals clanging on dancers feet—
the swish of undulating skirts—
peaks and valleys on rustling paper—
secret code for initiation—
through passages of life and death.

Like Patricia, I responded to the pounding rhythm of the music.

Panpipe and Drums
by Laura Shovan

pedaling a bike
through city traffic
weave past
cars, cabs
skim sidewalks
slip under lights
turning yellow
there' s a beat to it
a racing rhythm
legs pump pedals
like flat palms
against the skin
of a drum

I like the way Mike Ratcliffe hears threads of other styles of music in the clip from Uganda.

Listening to a Ugandan Folk Song
by Mike Ratcliffe

In the panpipes' whirl of this Ugandan tune,
I see dervishes dancing to ecstasy.
I hear the frenzy of a jig or reel,
the familiar skirl of Highland pipes,
the atonality of an Asian song.

When our ancestors left the heartland,
did they carry a common tune,
whistled and hummed,
sung from band to clan
as they moved across the land,
carried down the ages,
coursing through our souls?

Thanks to Diane Mayr of Random Noodling for sharing this bit of research. As Mike pointed out, panpipes are an ancient instrument, found all across the world. Diane says, "The sound clip caption mentioned the 'obulere.' I found it was pan pipes. That started me looking at pan pipes--there are variations all over the world. Then I got hung up on Pan and his pipes. I read several versions of the story--and now there's mine."

Pan's Pipes
by Diane Mayr

To thwart the advances
of Pan, the goat-man,
the lovely nymph, Syrinx
engaged in mythic high jinxs.

She called upon her sisters
to change her into a reed--
a trick not long to succeed.

A breeze came through, it
blew the rushes and reeds
raising a tune, playful and twee
that caused Pan's heart to
skip a beat or two or three.

Pan cut down the reeds to
fashion a flute so he could
toot that song forever.

The story is not all glory,
for Pan soon found tedium
in the medium. And the
medium--she was pleased.

One more video before we end for today. Those of you who have been to the Dodge Poetry Festival will remember the musical group Yarina, from Ecuador. Among the instruments this folk music group plays is panpipe!

Here are all of the sound prompts for the last week of February. Remember, there will be a prize for our most prolific poet.

Footsteps in snow

Smoke on the Water
Sea Turtle

Ugandan Music

Choose a train sound. Thanks to Myra of Gathering Books for the suggestion!

Suggested by Jennifer Lewis.

Sunday, March 1: Project Wrap-up

If you'd like some poem-starters to wake up your muse, you'll find them at the bottom of this post. Drop in any time with a poem. I’ll continue to post your work throughout the month, no matter which sound you are writing in response to.

Would you like to read what we’ve written so far? Here are links to the week 3 poems. Each of these posts links to the week 1 and 2 poems.

Santa Fe Church Bells Poems by Linda Baie, Patricia VanAmburg, Diane Mayr, Laura Shovan, and Charles Waters.

Quaking Aspen Poems by Diane Mayr, Charles Waters, Laura Shovan, Patricia VanAmburg, Mike Ratcliffe, and Karin Fisher-Golton.

Tuesday, February 17 -- new poem!
Laughing Child Poems by Charles Waters, Diane Mayr, Laura Shovan, Michael Ratcliffe, Linda Baie, Margaret Simon, and Heidi Mordhorst.

Mysterious Space Sound Poems by Patricia VanAmburg, Charles Waters, Mike Ratcliffe, Laura Shovan, Linda Baie, Michelle Heidenrich Barnes, and Margaret Simon.

Museum Stairwell Poems by Linda Baie, Mike Ratcliffe, Laura Shovan, Charles Waters, Margaret Simon, Diane Mayr, Patricia VanAmburg, and Karin Fisher-Golton.

Friday, February 20 -- new poems!
Reptile Poems by Linda Baie, Patricia VanAmburg, Margaret Simon, Laura Shovan, Mike Ratcliffe, Donna Smith, Robyn Hood Black, Buffy Silverman, and Charles Waters.

Traditional Chinese Music Poems by Diane Mayr, Mike Ratcliffe, Laura Shovan, Robyn Hood Black, Linda Baie, Patricia VanAmburg, Carol Varsalona, Charles Waters, and Margaret Simon.


Linda B said...

All this music from the 'world' reminds me of that group Playing For Change, beautiful to hear. I love all your poems that celebrated it, and the awesome connections people imagined!

Anonymous said...

I just lost a long comment trying to post as myself--so I will just say that I really enjoyed today's poems and joyous music--Patricia