Finally, our prompt (optional, as always!) Today’s prompt comes to us from Megan Pattie, who points us to the work of the Irish poet Ciaran Carson, who increasingly writes using very long lines. Carson has stated that his lines are (partly) based on the seventeen syllables of the haiku, and that he strives to achieve the clarity of the haiku in each line. So today, Megan and I collectively challenge you to write a poem with very long lines. You can aim for seventeen syllables, but that’s just a rough guide. If you’re having trouble buying into the concept of long lines, maybe this essay on Whitman’s infamously leggy verse will convince you of their merits. Happy writing!
Please see NaPoWriMo for more information.
Missing the ladies, who I grew into adulthood with and we saw,
The Grand Canyon in its burnt orange and red glory set,
Peering far down into the canyon, too close to the edge smiling,
Pulling each other back, to flash pictures on cameras all of us worn.
And planning each Thursday night to go dancing and drinking down on Whyte,
Collecting free drinks, shots from young men, paying ninty-nine-cents at the end.
Frequently, snapping pictures at winter formals, wearing our finest,
Staying at the fanciest and most historical hotel for sixty bucks,
Four girls to a room, preparing their hair and makeup, perfection, beauty.
If only I could be as fat, as I thought I was at twenty-one-years-old,
Thinking my stomach stuck-out, it wasn’t concave, it was fine and flat.
Walking through Vegas in stiletto heels, not feeling the pain, lost shoe —
My friend had a lovely Silky black-heel, she dropped walking back, barefoot.
Crying at 3:00 am (forget), remember times smiling and laughing.
Working in the same store, I dream I work their at night with my ladies,
Now raising kids, puppy training, fiancés, husbands, moving in — life changes.
From twenty-years-old to thirty-one-years old nearly; eleven years still strong.
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