January 29, 2013

January 27, 2013

January 25, 2013

Poetry Friday--"Inauguration Day 2013"


I can't tell you how delightful it was to be at home on Inauguration Day. Normally I'm at work and only get to see soundbites later in the day. It was fun to watch, from start to finish, the all-American hoopla that goes into inaugurating a president. It also restored a little of the faith and pride that I had lost over the manic past year of electioneering.
Inauguration Day 2013

Ardent speeches, prayers,
and poems are peppered with
references to diversity
and immigrants, Seneca
Falls, Selma, and Stonewall.

Meanwhile, TV cameras point
toward the mall scanning
the crowd of hundreds
of thousands swathed in
wool, cotton, and fleece.

Male, female, black, white,
and every shade of human,
young, old, gay, straight,
native born, recently arrived.
They are all there. All here.

Smiling, crying, silent,
or cheering--huddled masses
yearning to be seen and
to see what is truth--
We, the people. We. The People

have arrived at the party
while the invitation is still
being stuffed in an envelope.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.
Tabatha Yeatts is hosting this week's Poetry Friday Round-Up. See you there!

Photo by Brian Gratwicke.

January 22, 2013

January 18, 2013

Poetry Friday--Photographs

Sharon Olds has written some truly heartbreaking poems. This is one of them:
Photograph of the Girl

The girl sits on the hard ground,
the dry pan of Russia, in the drought
of 1921, stunned,
eyes closed, mouth open,
raw hot wind blowing
sand in her face. Hunger and puberty are
taking her together. She leans on a sack,
layers of clothes fluttering in the heat,
the new radius of her arm curved.
She cannot be not beautiful, but she is
starving. Each day she grows thinner, and her bones
grow longer, porous. The caption says
she is going to starve to death that winter
with millions of others. Deep in her body
the ovaries let out her first eggs,
golden as drops of grain.

From The Dead and the Living.
There are many photographs of the famine in Russia that took place in 1921. I wouldn't recommend looking at them. Children suffered greatly. Many did not survive.

The photograph below was taken October 10, 1921. The Library of Congress caption reads, "Two small coffins being carried on stretchers to cemetery in the Volga famine district of Bolshevist Russia."

Process

Let me forget the child
whose body I brought into
the world and whose soul
I carry out so clumsily.

"Just walk," he says.

I look down, and watch
my step. I look down
and pray not to stumble.
I lift my foot...

"Just walk," he says.

Lord, let me lay my child
in the belly of Earth--
only She will not go
to sleep hungry tonight.

"Just walk," he says.

So I do.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.
Sorry for the downer today...I hope the Round-Up at Violet Nesdoly/poems will have more cheerful poetry to share with you!



January 15, 2013

January 11, 2013

Poetry Friday--Ekphrastic Tanka

In November I wrote about an online anthology, Ekphrastic Tanka, edited by Patricia Prime. I included an example of my own ekphrastic tanka, which I never got around to submitting. I have yet another in my files to share with you today.

The painting is by Gustav Klimt, "Adele Bloch-Bauer I" (1907).

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. Art courtesy ibiblio.org.

Here's the text alone:
the use of gold
is no replacement for
inner glow
our time would have been
better spent laughing
She doesn't look happy, nor healthy with all that gold, does she? Poor Adele.

The Poetry Friday Round-Up for today is taking place at No Water River. Stop by and say hello to Renee!

January 8, 2013

January 6, 2013

Happy Haiga Day!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

This is another in the "Hogarth School" series based on photos taken after-hours at the Hogarth Country Day School in Epping, NH. To see more in the series, click on the Hogarth School series label on the right.

January 4, 2013

Poetry Friday--"Evening Star"


Georgia O'Keeffe, "Evening Star, No. III," (1917), MoMA.

The painting above by Georgia O'Keeffe is the inspiration for this poem by Edward Hirsch:
Evening Star

(Georgia O'Keeffe in Canyon, Texas, 1917)

She was just a schoolteacher then
Walking away from the town
                                            in the late-afternoon sunset,
A young woman in love
                                    with a treeless place,
The scattered windmills and pounding winds
Of the whole prairie sliding toward dusk,
Something unfenced and wild
                                            about the world without roads,
Miles and miles of land
                                    rolling like waves into nowhere,
The light settling down in the open country.

She had nothing to but walk away
From the churches and banks, the college buildings
Of knowledge, the filling stations
                                                 of the habitable world,
And then she was alone
                                     with what she believed--
The shuddering iridescence of heat lightning,
Cattle moving like black lace in the distance,
Wildflowers growing out of bleached skills,
The searing oranges and yellows of the evening star
Rising in daylight,
                            commanding the empty spaces.

It may be considered an ekphrastic poem. Ekphrasis is art about art, which can be visual, written, or another form of art created in response. I think, however, that the poem here is more a study of the artist than the work itself. No matter, it's a fine poem!

Oops, I almost forgot...the Round-Up is being held in New Hampshire this week--right up the road a piece at Matt's place, Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme.

January 1, 2013

Haiku Sticky #182

A tanka for today.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Have a great 2013!