I’m using daily prompts associated with Inktober (artists doing ink drawings) to spur poetry this month. The poems flow from the prompts, though it may not be obvious (at all); and sometimes the poems are revisions of earlier poems that came to mind when I mulled the prompt. If there’s a photo in the post, it was chosen after the poem was written. I’m “showing my work” by offering some of the words, phrases, associations that came to me for each prompt. The poems may or may not have anything to do with gardens, gardening, or “nature” as it’s commonly considered. To see all the poems (once they’re written), check the Inktober landing page.
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Today’s prompt: DIZZY — Oddly, yesterday’s “Ancient” poem included the word “dizzy” and today’s “Dizzy” poem includes the word “ancient,” and both included those words before revisions, when they were originally written (2015 and 2001).
Some associations: woozy, giddy, vertiginous, lightheaded, Vertigo, spinning, unsteady, wobbly, awhirl, disoriented, I’m so dizzy my head is spinning/like a whirlpool it never ends, heights, amusement park rides, dizzy dame, dizzying heights (success), dizzy pace of modern life, dizzy spells, Dizzy Gillespie (jazz trumpeter)
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Poem: (originally written after 9/11/2001, revised Oct. 2019)
World Trade Centers, 1969
Steel and glass rise like powerful magic
conjured day by day with booming
craft, dig deep to ground,
hoist high like bones the gleaming girders
shaped as old and unfleshed lizards
to the midday sky, clear and bright,
now our ancient urban world,
now our sleekly strewn metropolis.
My father works in the shadow of the birthing towers.
We crane our necks and hold hands tight,
sway dizzy looking up, unable to look down,
wordless craving, and who wouldn’t crave?
The gleaming beauties soar so full of force,
form so full of dreams, stand so firm, so firm.
I’m six, still learning what’s permanent, like marriages,
skyscrapers, best friends, and what dies,
the dinosaurs, grandparents, and some pets.
The blasting, crashing, blazing, rumbling of
the machines constructing
the future haunting
make me think in that moment
or this moment
that maybe dinosaurs aren’t gone; maybe
they’re vast shadows on the quivering landscape,
breathlessly caught like ash in cement,
awaiting our desperate incantations.
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