Pop Culture Poesy

This week I did make it to Barnes and Noble, I am merely late in posting about it. I went earlier in the day than I normally do, and perhaps as a result, my normal table was occupied. I was forced to find a table at the local Starbucks-in-a-bookstore that almost all Barnes and Nobles have these days. It wasn’t entirely unconducive to poetry work, though it was a bit louder than I am used to, more idle conversation less quietly browsing of the stacks.

This week’s poetical musings are in the form of the ballad and heroic verse. The ballad is written in a variety of standards, but most popular is one with alternating lines of iambic tetrameter and trimeter and a rhyme scheme of ABAB. Heroic verse is not mostly about Iron Man and Batman, but is in fact a simple iambic pentameter with a rhyme scheme of AABBCCDD.

This week I decided to dedicate my poetical notions to Star Wars.

The Ballad of Luke and Leia

Now gather round and let me tell
the tale of Luke and Leia.
The sandborne son, the Alderaan belle
their love, it’s true, a fluke.

Never had he known love at all
and she was much too busy
He knew only sand and droids tall
She knew politik privy

But she fell in with Imper’al types
and he came to her rescue
then they did kiss, an act most hyped
not knowing they were askew

For he was her long lost brother
and she was his own sister
then they will help discovered the other
still he, yet twice, had kissed her.

 

It won’t light the world on fire, but I find it amusing enough. Of note, my rhyme scheme is ABAC, and in the first stanza it really should “Leia and Luke” but it just sounds better the other way around, to me at least. Now: to my heroic verse.

Obi-Wan’s Confession

Dear Luke, I must confess to you a truth:
a move I made for your fam’ly in youth.
The move’s become a mistake you must now know
Before this ill advised, ill love can grow.
Your knowledge is not complete, I must tell
you things you need to know, this love to quell.
A single child you are not, now nor ever
have been. You have a sibling. If you’re clever
you will know of whom I speak to you…
Yes. True. The one I mean is your new boo,
the one you have now kissed: your sister.
Shall we now chalk it up to this, you missed her?

Again, nothing very profound or even that good, but again, it amuses me. I had trouble with the rhymes in this and the ballad, but I did my best. Some are obvious, some are clunky, but at least all rhyme. I do, however, like this idea of adapting pop culture to old poetical forms. I think I will continue to do so. Until next time, do enjoy!

Offerings

I almost didn’t go to my weekly get away to Barnes and Noble, but I pushed myself to go and I am so glad I did. It was a beautiful evening, one of the last we will have this year most likely, and the drive from my apartment to the bookstore with the windows down and the breeze blowing by was just perfect. I even got an idea for one of my poems on the way there.

Today’s offerings coming in the form of: the rubai, which is at least a twelve line poem with the rhyme scheme AABA, CCDC, EEFE and so on; the Rime Royal which is a seven line poem with the rhyme scheme ABABBCC; and the Ottiva Rima which is an eight line poem with a rhyme scheme of ABABABCC, and which is very similar to the Rime Royal. In that order I give you today’s poems. I written the first two in iambic pentameter, and the last in trochaic pentameter for those of you who know what that means (or remember from a previous posting.) Anyhow, after much ado, the poems. For real now.

Summer

The smell of fries upon the afternoon air,
it makes me hungry for a burger. Fare
with which I fill my summer stomach full
of times without a trouble or a care

The laughing little children remind me
of a simpler, an uncomplicated mead
to down and quench the thirst of adventure
of climbed trees, swum holes, and scraped knees

Oh, Ah! The summer time it tastes so sweet!
A truck rumbles with melody down the street
its back so full of treats and iced creams
the perfect thing to make the even’ complete.

 

Lament for Lars

Stark white stormtroopers swarm the moisture farm
they look for droids of blue and white and gold
the minions of an Empire mean them harm
Alas! for them to whom the droids been sold
Oh Uncle Owen tries the droids withhold
but blaster fire and death is his reward
as Owen, Beru burn in the courtyard.

 

Literary Snob

Night has fallen over rows of bookshelves
Among poets, authors, and the restless
I would say that we have lost ourselves.
At least these books have worth unlike artless
hordes of barbaric souls who pride themselves
having read the crummy soul-less awe-less
pulped fiction that’s all the rage these days
I wish I could burn them all in a blaze!

Ok, so that last one makes with some eye rhymes (words that look like they rhyme when they don’t really) and they all play a bit loose with the meter, but it was the best I could come up with at the time. Remember, these are but practice and folly. I make no claims to poetical greatness. I have fun writing and attempting the forms. I hope you enjoy reading them.

Adazzle!

My pup is sitting on top of my knapsack, clearly miffed that she can’t sit on the keyboard of my Macbook Pro. I am here typing up my latest poetical offerings from my weekly sojourn to Barnes & Noble. I am starting to really enjoy my time spent there, reading and writing poetry. Today’s poems included syllabic verse, and two poetical forms, the terza rima and the quatrain.

Syllabic verse, most famous of which is the haiku, is poetry based on number of syllables per line as opposed to metrical feet or stresses or what have you. I wrote two syllabic verse poems, one on rain, the other on hygiene, topics as suggested by my muse, Stephen Fry of The Ode Less Traveled. The first poem is written with alternating lines of 5 and 7 syllables. You can work out for yourself the syllab count of the second poem.

Rain

Gently falling from the sky
staining the dry ground
with dripping drops of moisture
the clouds seem to cry

But to weep or not to weep
the rain is welcome
farmers rejoice to see water
around their crops seep

 

Hygiene

It starts with
a gentle scrubbing of
me
from head to toe
teeth, hair, skin, nails
brush’d
now I’m clean enough for
society.

External
cleanliness is only
part
of the story
how does one scrub the inner you
from filthy things?
start
not by drinking draino
it won’t work.

 

I amuse myself thusly. Anyway, I then went on to formal poetry, that is poems adhering to a form, the most famous of which is probably the sonnet. I played around with terza rima, a poetical form that alternates rhymes at the end of the lines in an ABA BCB CC pattern. My terza rima was written in iambic pentameter on the subject of World War Two.

Untitled

The greatest generation: historically
they fought and died to save the world from sin.
The wars, once won, they danced euphorically.
We shudder, thinking what might have been
if Germany had won the war of wars.
Might we now march to songs of Hitler’s din?
But all our praise to women, men, the corps
who fought and died. To them we raise a chorus.

 

Not very good, perhaps, but it adheres to the form and it rhymes, at least partly. Lastly I wrote two quatrains, a poem with a rhyme scheme of ABAB in any number of stanzas, also in iambic pentameter.

This Town

Just one Post Office, a single stop light
banks: three, churches: four, a people: one.
Though old and worn our town is full and bright;
it is the best old town we love under the sun.

 

Poesy

A poem is hard to write in meter and rhyme
to sort the accented syllabs and foots
it takes much thought and lots and lots of time
the page gets covered in pencil soot

As the poet writes and carefully rewrites the lines
when one, like gold, is writ it is like loot
pulled from vault or chest, a most heinous crime
of literary kind, but hark! the poem takes root!

 

Again, not very good, but that isn’t the point at the moment. The point is to adhere to form and that I have done. By the way, as I have used it twice now, syllab is my non-word word for syllable. I always thought it could use a shortened form. And the title for this post, “adazzle” means “glitteringly bright” and was a new word that I came across in my reading today. I learned it and now I share it with you.

 

Great god Poesy

I spent another evening at Barnes and Noble, reading and writing poetry. I had fun with anapests and dactyls and Anglo-Saxon poetry. I am constantly reminded how much I love poetry, in all its various forms and delicious iterations.

While these poems that I present are not very polished, or very perfect, I find them fun and delightful. Mostly these are practice poems for different techniques and methods. Enjoy them as such.

This first poem is written in anapestic hexameter. That means that each section of the poem is written with two unaccented syllables followed by one accented. Hexameter refers to the number of sections in the line, in this case, six sections. Despite the long lines, this is still a poem and not a block of prose.

Directions to Home

From the twelve, take a turn past the Toys R US straight on down straight as you go
Do not turn to the left or the right, resist Dunkin Doughnuts as you pass,
Right turn, Glacier Hills Apartments is your destination. Now find a spot.
When you’re parked, ring the bell, or call me, and I will let you into the room.

 

This second poem is written in dactylic pentameter. A dactyl is the inverse of a anapest, which means one accented syllable followed by two unaccented syllables. Pentameter refers to the number of sections in the line, in this case, five sections. In actual fact in this poem, the first four sections are dactyls, the last is a spondee which is two accented syllables in a row. This poem is broken up into six lines, but is actually a three line poem. I think it looks better, and breaks up the rhythm ever so slightly, to put the spondee on its own line. Nevertheless, it is to be read continuously from each line to the the next.

Cows

Mooing in darkness now, cows all ’round chewing the
green cud.
Black and white, horned and spotted beasts bovine in
nature,
Deadly to grass and wheat. Even better to me when
hamburger.

 

This last poem is in Anglo-Saxon verse. Anglo-Saxon verse, in this case, is comprised of alliteration in three accented syllables and one accented syllable of a non-alliterated syllable.

To Eat or Not

No green gabled broccoli or gagh* for me.
I wouldn’t mind ice cream instead of pie,
Though punkin is peachy and perfectly fine,
Pizza is always a perfect pie, I’ve found.
I don’t mind doughnuts, but dumplings are out.
Chicken is choice when children shout for nuggets.
Burgers with bold bacon and cheese,
Are favorite, fun and fantastic to me.
I don’t know now what I’ll nom tonight
Probably popcorn or peas, something random.

 

Each topic here was suggested by the book I’m working through, The Ode Less Traveled by Stephen Fry. He always finds fun topics to focus on for the practice poetry, in this case directions to my place of residence, cows, and what I’d like to eat or not. Until next time…

*gagh is a Klingon dish. Read about it here.

Poems for the Poetical

poetry
poetry

I spent my evening at Barnes and Noble, a surprisingly quiet place to hang out, and worked through more of Stephen Fry’s The Ode Less Traveled. Here follows a few moderately good poems borne of the exercises that he suggested. As you might be able to tell, the subject was television. Enjoy.

Star Trek: Enterprise

They trek through stars in ships and pods
They beam and fight and talk and look
At blue Andorians, it’s true!
And pointy-eared Vulcan soldiers.

They meet a Tellerite trader,
The Borg, though they should not yet be
And the father of the fathers
of Data and Lore: Doctor Soong.

 

Chuck

Bartowski, Sarah, and Morgan,
John Casey, Gen’ral Beckman.
It’s Chuck: the nerd, the spy, the man.
He fixes PC’s and

The world when its at risk by spies
And Fulcrum, Ring, and Volkov.
It’s Chuck: the man, the nerd, the spy
Who wins each day and night!

 

Bones

Bones and Booth, her mind his guns,
Solve the grisly and the grossest
Crimes that hit Virginia, D.C.
Squinterns/Sweets helps as well. Sometimes.

Bones never lie, they tell the truthly
Story of each crime. They, the bones,
Justice want and crave so mightily.
They cry: “Save us, clean us, of Sin!”

 

I was working with iambic tetrameter “Star Trek: Enterprise”, iambic tetrameter/trimeter “Chuck”, and trochaic tetrameter “Bones” if you were curious. Though, if you are good with scansion you might notice that none of these are consistent. Chalk it up to either bad form or creative license, depending on whether you mean me criticism or praise.