And now for our (optional) prompt. Today, I challenge you to fill out, in no more than five minutes, the following “Almanac Questionnaire,” which solicits concrete details about a specific place (real or imagined). Then write a poem incorporating or based on one or more of your answers. Happy writing!
Warm Spring Day at fifteen degrees,
In our pretty bungalow near the River Valley,
Gerber Daisies on the table, warm colours please,
Resting on a tablecloth, Easter pastels gladly.
The dog lies under the table in my art studio,
I’ve tried to paint her, but she never sits still long.
Driving downtown to immerse myself, with dog go.
Bask in the presence of the farmer’s market’s throngs.
Dog walking beside me, enjoying all her doggy friends.
Conversation with some guy about Hockey playoffs,
Not many Canadian teams made it, no matter in the end.
Many Canadian players, play for American teams, so layoff.
Walking down the street past ancient buildings,
Observing the walls speckled, thoughtless youth wrote graffiti.
Some call it ‘art’ while others would say ‘you’re dreaming.’
Obscenity scrawled haphazardly, done messily.
“Where’s your boyfriend?” Asks the aged vendor selling peaches.
I give him a smile, saying: “I’m happy to be single right now.”
Subject change, “Have you seen my new puppy?” Subject now out of reach.
Old guy is comfortable, complains of gas prices and frowns.
Oil prices particularly bad, so I let him know gas prices are low.
He doesn’t understand; when he was young gas cost barely anything.
Ready to move on, I don’t want to be rude; dog barks, “time to go.”
He talks more, the Terwilliger Park Foot Bridge opening this spring.
The new bridge has an amazing minimalist design,
I tell the vendor about biking there with my Dad,
When my brothers and I were younger, biking was fine.
Following closely, didn’t want to get spanked as we had.
Then slipping away I wander to other booths,
Comfortable in leggings and thin white sweater,
The dog wants to run, I can tell; We leave, dog approves.
Down to the river valley on the off leash trails is better.
We have to watch out for the Beavertaur — a mythical animal,
But some say they have seen it on the prowl.
Both beaver and minotaur; a creature quite unimaginable.
For those walking river valley trails, the situation could be foul.
My friend has sworn upon Wayne Gretzky’s statue,
That he barely escaped the Beavertaur with his life.
Made me laugh; today the dog and I are fine, no snafu.
We went on home and we had a nap, long day but no strife.
Gazing out my window, to the brick patio below,
Think we need outdoor furniture, to enjoy in the sun.
Remembering family friend, left life’s flow.
Gone for five-years already, in heaven’s quiet hum.
She babysat me when I was small, thirteen years my senior,
Yesterday, we wrote portraits of families. Today, let’s turn our vision outward, and write fan letters. I challenge you to write a poem in the form of a fanletter to a celebrity. Now, this could be a celebrity from long ago, and needn’t be an actor or singer (though it could be). You could write to George Washington or Dorothy Dandridge, Marie Curie or The Weeknd. Happy writing!