Thursday, May 1, 2008

final thoughts

It's May! The end of RePoWriMo, for this year at least. I loved reading the poems people posted and everyone's comments. Right now I'm debating doing this again next year -- it would be even more fun if more people posted refrigerator poems. Maybe with advance notice this time . . .

What did I learn? Well, the following:

  • I can write a poem about flatulence. Not sure if that's a good thing, though.

  • I have just today figured out there's a "sharpness" editor for my digital camera, so all those fuzzy words actually could have been more readable. Oops.

  • It's by far much easier/faster to go with the poem the words want to make than to try to make a specific poem about a particular topic. And changing words to what is available can turn the poem in unexpected directions, which is always fun.

  • "Your" really needs to be included in one of these kits.

At the beginning of the month, I thought about listing all the words alphabetically on my fridge, but that seemed a little overly obsessive, so I didn't. But next year, this would be a good thing. With about 1,000 words (from 3 kits) randomly scattered about, searching for one, muttering, "I know I've seen this somewhere" gets old fast. I did put all the small words together (me, he, is, and...), which helped to some extent, but alphabetical is really the way to go for everything else.

Thank you so much for reading and/or participating! Overall, this has been fun and a great exercise. This blog will mostly be going dark for now, but I may post interesting poetry things over the year as they come up.

For now, I leave you with one last poem:

one last poem

the aftermath

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

magnum opus

Both photos are one poem -- part 1 and part 2. I took a photo of the whole thing, but I'm not sure if it would be readable. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

April 22 poem -- oops

Okay, so I missed a day yesterday. Nobody's perfect, right? By the time I had the time to do this, it was 9pm, and I really didn't feel like turning on the computer at that point.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

What's in your pocket?

Today is the first annual Poem in Your Pocket Day (no, really), sponsored by the Academy of American Poets. I think they had a NYC-based one last year that I heard about after the fact. The idea is to share your favorite poem with friends, relatives, co-workers, and random strangers today. To find out more, you can go here.

Which brings up an interesting question. If you had only one poem to introduce poetry to someone with, what would you choose, and why? Would you choose a rhyming poem, because that's the easiest way to describe the concept of "poetry"? Would you choose a modern free-verse poem, because that better reflects contemporary poetry? I'm just tossing out questions here, I don't know what I would choose. One of my favorite poems is Lewis Carroll's "Jabberwocky," and that's just not helpful at all.

Which brings up another interesting question. What were your formative poems? What poem or poems made you love poetry? For me, it was the dwarves' songs in Tolkein's The Hobbit, especially this one (I still remember where I was when I read that for the first time), along with Alfred Noyes' romantic "The Highwayman." Maybe I should accost people today and read them some old-fashioned rhymin' goodness.

April 17 poem

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

animal passions

Two poems today! The first is mine, and the second is a special cameo from the amazing D.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

neither taxes nor death

Thanks, Joyce, for telling me how I can lighten the photos! Better, don't you all think?

Sunday, April 13, 2008


And here's a half poem in French that I'm not going to translate because it sounds a lot better in the original!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

special guest poet

I have to be out of town most of the day on Wednesday, so we're having a special guest poet, the amazing D. Hurrah! Enjoy.

because sometimes art imitates life

Before breakfast this morning, hubby and I moved 1.35 tons of stone, using buckets and a shovel. I am not what you would call a muscular woman. Now I'm taking a lunch break from moving 4 tons of topsoil and compost.
What have you done today?

Friday, April 4, 2008

haiku for M

Late post today -- tough when there's something specific to say but literally not the words to say it!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

One of the challenging -- and frustrating -- things about using the magnetic poetry is that only specific words are available. I constantly have to rethink what I want to say, usually because the first words that spring to mind are not actually on the magnets. It makes me a little crazy, but I like this part of it, rephrasing and seeing how the poem re-creates itself according to what's available.

The other part is the spontaneous images caused by which words are juxtaposed on my fridge. Images or phrases that I wouldn't have thought of appear, and become a springboard. Of course, then see the above paragraph -- where I want to take it is not necessarily where the magnets will let me.

It will be interesting to see how this continues over the month. So far, creating each poem has been a challenge, although they do feel much more finished than the year I wrote a poem (from scratch) each day during April. That year, I felt like I had 30 unfinished drafts, many without promise. One or two turned into what I think are good poems. I wonder what the long-run result of these poems will be?

Mad Dogs and Englishmen

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

April 2 poem

These different sized magnets are aggravating. Not sure if you can read all the above (hmm, must do shorter poems?) and I'm not sure why it keeps coming out so dark. I will experiment. In the meantime, here's a transcription. I can't get the indent right for the last line, but you get the general idea.

you are calmer than a languid fish
as you linger in the sea
slow water surrounds you in salt
like a morning embrace from the moon
yesterday was a fever
all ferocious dazzle & worry
its need still haunts this ocean
cool ghost of blaze & boil

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

RePoWriMo #1

I got several different boxes for this project, and as you can see, the words are larger in the supplementary boxes! Grr, as the haiku would say. So please ignore the unintentional emphasis created by the sizes. Not quite what I had in mind.

Anyway, here it is, poem number 1. What did you come up with? Post in the comments!

Fridge of Inspiration

Monday, March 31, 2008

Monday, March 17, 2008

Help with Haiku?

According to New Scientist magazine, a Japanese researcher has developed a computer program that can create haikus:

Naoko Tosa of Kyoto University in Japan has written a program that takes
two or three keywords entered by a user and creates a three-line poem
related to them in the haiku's structure of five, seven, and five syllables
per line.

To find related words, the software searches several databases,
including a thesaurus, a database that links words that relate to the same
season, and one that links onomatopoeic words.

How cool is that?

You can find the whole article here. Sadly, no links to the program itself, although I did come across a website called Computerized Haiku. Hit a button and voila! Your own randomly created haiku. This is what I got:
All blue in the fog,
I smell faint streams in the sun.
Grrr! The sun has sprung.

Love the "Grr!" Somehow, I never thought about putting that in a haiku before.

Thursday, March 6, 2008


As I'm sure everyone knows, April is National Poetry Month, and November is National Novel Writing Month. Both are simply awesome.

So I am officially combining both ideas and announcing that April is herefore Refrigerator Poetry Writing Month.

What is that, you ask? Simple. Here are the rules.

1. Create a poem every day during April, using only refrigerator poetry magnets.

2. Multiple boxes of refrigerator poetry magnets about any and all themes and in multiple languages are perfectly acceptable.

3. No line limit. Go as short or as long as the muse requires.

4. All types of poetry and subject matter are acceptable: free verse, sonnets, pantoums, you name it.

5. All work MUST BE ORIGINAL. This is a biggie. If it didn't spring, Athena-like, from your very own brain, it does not count.

That's it! I will be doing this, and posting a photo every April day on this blog. I hope you will join me, and add your poems in the comments. (I don't think you can post photos in the comments, so you'l have to type them in. We'll take it as an article of faith that you are using refrigerator poetry magnets to create your work.)