"dazzle gradually"

"Dazzle Gradually" 2017 poems, paintings, new art & photography--a diary, a discipline, a delight. Read over my shoulder as I post my unedited poetry ---you can see it in the raw or get my first book and see how the work evolves with new books rolling out next year.

Polly Alice

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Yes, I have run out of ideas at around sixty-five poems.  I've posted most of my older poems and worked through many new ones.  The quality of a poem a day is a little different from poetry in books and journals -- my poems have only been revised once or maybe twice compared with a poem that may take a year of revision to come to its full resolution.  Hardest of all, a poetry blog means I feel everyone watching over my keyboard, or I will likely post something that with a little more time, might of ended up scraped in the eternal digital scrap heap. 
Last night's poetry group was cancelled due to the terrible weather.  We were going to have a cliché bashing party.  So let's do one here.  It's easy to find a cliché, "lily white," for example was something I was seriously reprimanded for in my first (and last) attempt at a sonnet.  To bash a cliché, follow these simple steps:
1.  Write out the cliché, or circle one in a poem
2.  Write down all the connotations for the metaphor pretending to be an adjective describing your person or object.  Lilly: soft, pure, silky, springy, new, fertile, mothering, earthy, miraculous, etc, etc.
3.  Write down all the connotations for the other important words in the phrase.  White: Moby Dick, pale, dead, colorless, new, clean, young, innocent, etc, etc.
4.  Pick your best list to write about.
5.  Write about your idea using only descriptive words from another set--an extended metaphor. 
For example, write about motherhood using only words you'd normally expect to use about gardening; write about flowers using imagery from a famous story or book, or descriptions about a person you know well.
6.  Have fun.
7.  Post yours here.

The hand of fate has an arm and an elbow
an elbow attached to a man in blue jeans.
Fate walks on a road full of gravel and salt,
cigarette butts, and fumes from the bus,
and a possible, chance step in dog doo
where a neighborly neighbor walked his dog this afternoon.

If vocation calls, she has a voice and a face
a face attached to a woman in a dress.
Vocation rides on a bike with pink wings,
and stops at the bus stop full of gravel and salt,
cigarette butts, and fumes from the bus,
and steps over the poor pile of dirty dog doo
to shake hands with Fate and say "How do you do?"

Fate and Vocation were friends from the start.
They've always shared the very same heart,
and when you've met one,
you've probably met two,
and they'll take you by the hand,
but the rest is up to you.

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