Monday, September 26, 2016

POEMS OF THE WEEK ~ KERRY, JAE ROSE AND TRUEDESSA

This week, my friends, we have poems from three brilliant poets to share with you. I asked Kerry O'Connor of Skylover and Skywriting, Jae Rose of  her blog of the same name,  and Truedessa, of True Wanderings, if they would share the following poems with us, and they graciously agreed.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

Our first selection is Kerry's beautiful poem, part of a series she embarked on recently that is resulting in some wonderful work.







THREE LITTLE BIRDS ALL IN A ROW

Three little birds in a row 
Sat musing. 
The Black Riders and Other Lines ~ Stephen Crane


I


Yes, some days, the sky is bleak
with wind grinding the clouds
and birds stolen on the wing –
and on those days, your heart
feels full of pebbles
slowly grinding your blood to dust.


II

A man came to me once, in a lonely place,
and offered to show me
the waterhole where he kept his heart.
He drew it out, and cradled it
like a pet; it clawed his hand.
I saw it had the beak of an eagle.


III

There are no answers in the firmament;
but here is my garden, waterless
and dying. Every bird comes of its own
volition, or hunger, to eat the apples
I have halved and skewered,
a purposeful dissection of my own heart.


IV

If you have a song, sing it for me now
before the drought has broken
that I may pick each note apart to wear
on a grey string around my neck.
And I will love you for life;
I will love you in the lonely place.

Kerry O'Connor, August 6, 2016

Sherry: So evocative, Kerry. I resonate with the pebbles in the heart, such a good description. I especially admire loving someone "in the lonely place." You have echoed Crane's tone admirably, yet this poem is wholly your own, and beautiful.

Kerry: This poem is, in fact, a continuation of one I wrote a few days earlier, entitled Aye; But Beloved, and both were inspired by my reading of Stephen Crane's The Black Riders and Other Lines which is a compilation of Crane's shorter pieces. Crane's poems seem to fall under the themes of righteous wisdom, human wisdom and love and its loss.

The latter theme is central to my poetry and these were the stanzas which inspired me the most. Crane's poems are all quite individual, however, while I have used the idea of short pieces to provide a more cohesive narrative of a single speaker. In 'Three Little Birds', I have made the connection more obvious by including the same motifs in each, namely the birds, the heart and the water (which becomes a song in the final stanza). 

I am currently working on another set of stanzas, which begins HERE. I have also recorded a reading of the entire collection thus far, under the title, Aye; But Beloved and Other Lines, which can be found on Soundcloud HERE

I doubt these poems would have been written if it were not for my reading of Crane, and I have acknowledged this in my choice of titles, and preface quotes. At present, I do not know if the series is complete, and that is an exciting position to be in for a poet, especially when the well is so often dry.

Sherry: Yes, indeed, it is always thrilling to contemplate a series of poems! Thank you for this, Kerry. And thank you for the link to the spoken poems, always a pleasure to listen to.

Now let's take a look at a powerful piece by our friend, Jae Rose.






Prophesy


She crunches her apple 
It has been a long time 
Sometimes yesterday
Almost tomorrow
She is wishing inside
Quietly parked in my arms
Happy 
I think
Composed
She corrects
Her hair is shiny
Dress 
Clean pressed and fresh
It was good they caught you
She whispers
Holding my hand
If they hadn’t 
We wouldn’t be able to play any more
Quick sticks
No time to lose
Our sins and thrills 
Have tolled and rolled
Fallen like timber
Instilled in our soul
We have to make things right 
She trills
I am scared of falling Alice
Then don’t 
She says
All falls start with one bad step
I think of the man
Of being stuck 
In the bottle of glue
Contained
Trapped
She corrects

We watch the clouds
Dreaming past the telephone pole
In the lines are forgotten shouts
Irascible destinations
Cards laid out

Installed
Enabled

We are given to magic and stars 
Twelve small stones
Mixed in a bowl of fireflies and mint

Poesy
Prophesy
Fable

There may not be home or even a rainbow
But the end always lies in the palm of our hand.  

Jae Rose August 16, 2016


Sherry: That closing is absolutely wonderful. I love the note of strength, and, as always, Alice's clear correction to find the exactly right phrase. Your small pilgrim is a wise soul.

Jae Rose: Thank you for choosing one of my poems for your feature. It is a pleasure to stand beside two inspiring poets - thank you also to Kerry and Truedessa.

'Prophesy' was the first poem I wrote after being discharged from hospital. I had a short break from blogging - and the various things that caused me to be there in the first place.

I was feeling brighter than usual. Hence Alice was all fresh and polished. Perhaps we were both renewed and a little less tired. It felt good to be home. Like something accomplished and tidied up. 

It sprang to life from four prompts - Magical Mystical Teacher’s Sunday Scribblings 2 - ‘Compose’ - and her Sunday’s Whirligig of the same week.  The Sunday Whirl and Sanaa’s Prompt Night's - ‘Let’s take a look at the cards shall we’.

I think it was one of those poems that tumbled out without much prodding. Alice felt full of energy and young. Ready, waiting and happy to talk again.

On top of Alice’s chatter, Sanaa’s prompt brought out a little magic and playfulness. The bowl of fireflies and mint was a pleasant surprise and seemed to fit in with the stones, palmistry reference and stars.

A little internet trawling changed the title from prophecy to prophesy -

To prophesy is to predict something or to utter something inspired by one's god’.

The photograph posted with the poem was the fabric of my sister’s dress. She stayed with me whilst I was in hospital. I think the pattern and flowers show how it felt to be with her and to safely return home.  

Colour, love and hope which hopefully I can draw on if/when darker days return. 




Sherry: My friend, we all hope they will not return, at least not in such force. We shall help you hold them at bay.  And bless your sister for being there with and for you. She is a good sister.

That weekend was a wonderful one for poetry. That same day, in the Pantry,  I read Truedessa's wonderful 'Cupping Light', a poem which holds great impact for me and whose refrain repeats in my mind, still, as a message to me from beyond the veil. Let's take a deep draught of that light.









In a sacred circle we gather
those who believe
in dreams...

We come to meditate on
life to find the answers
of our heart

Slumbering under the tree of life
I surrender myself to the beat
of twenty pounding drums...
thump
   THump
      THUMP

Dropping the cloak of insecurity
I drift away through the portal
of opportunity. My resting body
takes in spiritual nourishment

Through the darkness, I find my
way, following the signs that
lead me closer to my destination
twisted trees, screeching owl

I hear nocturnal life breathing
around me, feel the eyes peering
through hidden places.
crisp
  crackling
    twigs break with each step
      deer brush against the canvas
        of darkness...

Shadow people watch from the hollows
of giant oaks , maples and evergreens
fresh scent of pine circles me like a wreath
of pleasure...

Walking in two worlds, to find my true
potential in a landscape of changing
views, the river sings a reflective song

My heart races, beating to ancient calls
I hear you, the wolf howls from the cliff
of awareness, offering his guidance
  owoooooooooooo
     OW00000000000000
         OW000000000000000000

Darkness tightens its noose around the
hanging trees, fear of the unknown
grips me in a changing world

Apparitions dart between the
huge trunks, chanting a song
breathe, inhale/exhale

I love you
  I forgive you
    I thank you


Ahead the golden crescent moon
shines high above the treetops
shadowy figure steps out of night
approaching me, a wolf follows
in his steps...

I feel suddenly very small in this large
place of wonder. Fear of darkness in
the other world worries me, I want
to run, but can't move...adrenaline
flows through my veins....

I step forward to full-fill the dream
quest. The stars become very bright
illuminating the heavens and my path

In silence I stand before an ancient
dweller. His hair long, thick & black
with solemn eyes that reach for me
I can see the scars from the battles
of past lives.

The trees burst into a thousand lights
and my heart sings a song of new life
he offers me a firefly, places it in
my open palm. I cup it to my heart...

The offering of light is mine to carry into
my waking life.

 I love you
     I forgive you
        I thank you


echoes, as I am called back into the sacred circle
bringing with me the gift of light...

author's note: This is a vision that came to me
through meditation, it is what it is, a gift. May
you all carry a piece of light with you in your
journey.

Truedessa, August 7, 2016


Sherry: This poem is so powerful, and affects me in a very deep way. As I  mentioned, I often repeat to myself the lines "I love you. I forgive you. I thank you", and picture Pup's dear black face, as if he is speaking them to me. Tell us more about this poem, and experience, won't you?

Truedessa: First, I am delighted to be featured on Poets United - Poems of the Week. The poem you have selected is special to me as it came to me during a crystal bowl meditation / drumming session. I had been feeling the darkness of life with recent events in the world. My intention was to find light. My poem basically described the journey I embarked on as I slipped into the dreamscape.

For those who have never experienced anything like this, it can be overwhelming as everything seems very much alive as your senses become more acute. My intention was heard and full-filled, as I received the gift of light in the form of a firefly/lightning bug. I was touched by this gift and knew I had to bring honor to the vision and share the gift with those who might be in need of hope and light.

I love you.
   I forgive you.
      I thank you.

These are the words used in the chant of healing. May we all cup light and hold it to our hearts. Thank you, Sherry and the staff of Poets United, for creating a community filled with love.

Sherry: Thank you for writing this beautiful poem, and for sharing it with us, my friend.

And thank you to each of you talented women, for your poems, and your faithful participation at Poets United. We are what we are because of our members, and I feel very privileged to be among you.

My friends, I hope you take away something beautiful from these offerings today.  Sigh. My little cup is filled right to the brim. Do come back and see who we talk to next. Who knows? It might be you! 




39 comments:

  1. What a wonderful share from 3 of my favorite poets... Actually I think the way you let them in together and make them complement each other make them all the stronger... thank you Kerry, Jae and Trudessa for your words, and thank you Sherry for bringing it all together...

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    1. I did think they worked very well together, Bjorn. Am happy you enjoyed them.

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    2. Bjorn, thanks for all you do for the poetry community. I would gladly dance with the bear :)

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  2. Thank you Sherry and to Truedessa and Kerry also - a little cup of light in an otherwise darker week ..very much appreciated thank you

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    1. I hope some light floats your way, my friend. Thank you for being part of this conversation! Love and light.......

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  3. Three poets, whos blogs I visit often, and I am familiar with, and intrigued by their works. Happy to see them featured here today

    much love...

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  4. I do think these three poems work together very well to pour a little light into our hearts, during troubling times. Such a blessing to read them. Such a joy to belong to a community striving to grow through our love of poetry. Thank you, all.

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    1. It is a safe nurturing place - a star in the jar ;)

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  5. Oh my goodness, my goodness! I am full now, of apples and hearts, of droughts and love and light and hope. I had the poems with dinner, the conversation in silence as I munched on the soft innards of an acorn squash. Thank you all for joining the feast. Now I'm going to a meeting to plan a part of an undoing racism program. We keep on keeping on with renewed energy and inspiration. I hope all is well in your parts of the world.

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    1. Ummm, squash! Applause for your ongoing efforts towards undoing racism, Susan. We must chat about it one of these weeks.......the topic is at the forefront these days.

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    2. Good luck Susan - and keeping on keeping on (in the right direction) is sometimes the very best we can do

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  6. Thank you Sherry I am honored to be here with Kerry and Jae Rose. You have given me a bit of light!

    A special thanks to those who visit my blog, your comments are appreciated more than you know. Lifting me up when I am feeling down.

    Peace, light and love!

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    1. I am picturing that firefly on your palm, cupped to your breast - "cupping light". Sending you peace, light and love right back!

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    2. Thank you too Truedessa and light back - I think poets United has a bottle of it there for us all

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  7. What a fantastic trio, Sherry! I've been following Kerry's The Black Riders and Other Lines inspired poems, and I love them all. I haven't read anything by Jae Rose that I haven't loved, and this is no exception. And Truedessa's "cupping Light" is perfect for the season.

    Thanks so much for sharing.

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    1. A fantastic series indeed. I am hoping, down the road, that Kerry might talk to us more about this wonderful series.

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    2. Magaly - Thank you for reading and leaving your thoughts.

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  8. What a treat this was to see these poets featured here. All so different yet all so entrancing. Congratulatons everyone.

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    1. Each voice so unique. The blogosphere has definitely expanded my awareness of what a poem can be - so wide-reaching compared to the classical poets we learned in school.

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    2. Thank you for always visiting and supporting Old Egg - urgh school poetry..shudder

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  9. Kerry, I like how you have taken inspiration from Stephen Crane. I read and enjoyed so much of his poetry for a while. I remember his short, but deep, verse. Your writing does him justice.

    Jae Rose, what can I say! This poem is you at your best. I really loved the last three stanzas. I love the idea that the end lies in the palm of the hand!

    And, Truedessa, how wonderful that this poem came to you through meditation. What beautiful words, and how they transported me. What a wonderful journey.

    And, Sherry, again what a lovely collection of poets' works. Thank YOU as well for your fine compilation.

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    1. It is always my pleasure, Mary. Smiles.

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    2. Thank you Mary, I am a believer in meditation as it transports me into another reality. I am grateful for your constant support.

      Wishing you peace always!

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  10. Thank you so much ladies...poems of such depth truly bring light to us.. a treat this is Sherry, thank you :)

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  11. Thank you so much, Sherry for taking out time and featuring these three wonderful ladies. I am so enjoying their work here.. as it gives me much to admire and reflect upon.

    Kerry, your poem 'Three Little Birds All in a Row' echoes the work of Crane so very vividly. I especially adore ' your heart feels full of pebbles slowly grinding your blood to dust' its such a powerful and poignant image 💖

    Jae, I felt really honored that your poem 'Prophesy' was inspired by my prompt as it was an absolute delight to read! Especially love the reference to 'We are given to magic and stars. Twelve small stones. Mixed in a bowl of fireflies and mint. Poesy, Prophesy, Fable' sigh.. such an enchanting image 💖

    Truedessa, I am absolutely in love with "Cupping Light" as I feel it has so much beauty and depth. Especially in awe of the lines 'I hear nocturnal life breathing around me, feel the eyes peering through hidden places. crisp, crackling twigs break with each step, deer brush against the canvas of darkness' sigh simply beautiful 💖


    It is such an absolute joy to be a part of this community 😍 thank you Sherry for your wonderful compilation. You are amazing 💖


    Lots of love,
    Sanaa

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  12. Thank you Sanaa - and for such interesting prompts that fuel the words!

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    1. Sanaa - Thank you for your support and kind words.

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  13. Dear Sherry You always bring forward the best the highly creative and imaginative expressions by talented and gifted poets...Thank you for your wonderful effort and much appreciated is the work of the amazing writers...deeply inspiring motivating poetry....kindles the spirit..though very sad and heavy with the killing in my homeland Kashmir..clouds of war hovering closer

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    1. It is so sad to think of war and killing in such a beautiful land............may peace come.

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  14. Many thanks for selecting one of my pieces, Sherry. I feel very fortunate to have fallen in to good company with Jae Rose and Truedessa.

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  15. Each poem is a gift, wrapped in shiny paper tied with a proper bow! I love them, and I thank Kerry, Jae and Turedessa for the gift of their poems. My day is brighter because of these three women, and their words...and you, Sherry.

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    1. Thank you for your kind words, Always nice when one has a brighter day :)

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  16. Thank you, Sherry, for curating such wonderful works, and featuring three diverse but very talented poets. three very different styles of writing, but each enjoyable to read.

    Kerry, i have always enjoyed reading your poems, they have such an accomplished and well-crafted feel about them. for example in the featured poem, there are such stark and startling imagery that is hard to ignore.

    Jae, what can i say, your poems are such a roller-coaster ride of emotions and imagery. and a distinct style of writing which is really your own voice.

    Truedessa, there is a certain calm and meditative feel to your poems. i like the messages of hope and compassion in them.

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