Zumwalt Poems Online

Posts tagged ‘poetry skills workshop’

Repost of Wednesday Poetry Challenges #7 and #8

The New Year is upon us.  Toss your hat into the ring for one or both of these challenges.   Looking forward to reading your journal of your thoughts on fellow blogger poems or established poet’s poems.

Click on Mr. Linky to see the journals I have started and any others added since this post.  I think its a great New Year’s resolution to read and think about one poem a day, one poem a week or even, if time-constrained, one poem a month.

Poetry Challenge #7 is to create a journal of links and your reactions to poems by established (living or dead poets.) Details are here.  Example response is here. Mr. Linky for Challenge #7 is directly below:

Poetry Challenge #8 is similar to Challenge #7 but the poems are all poems by “unestablished” poets posting poems to their blogs.  Details are here.  Example response is here. Mr. Linky for Challenge #8 is directly below:

Everyone:

Have a great New Year!!!

I have had very little time to administer this site, so apologize.  Most of these posts are pre-scheduled and I, unfortunately, expect to have very little time during January.  Appreciate all that find time to visit now and then.  Thanks so much for your interest.

Zumwalt Site Adminstrator.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #7 and #8

(Starting Date for this Challenge is Jan, 1, 2012 — posted early to provide proper advance notice. Do not start this until the New Year — you can even consider this a New Year’s resolution — will repost this every Wednesday until the New Year.)

Poetry Challenge #7 is to create a journal of links and your reactions to poems by established (living or dead poets.) Details are here.  Example response is here. Mr. Linky for Challenge #7 is directly below:

Poetry Challenge #8 is similar to Challenge #7 but the poems are all poems by “unestablished” poets posting poems to their blogs.  Details are here.  Example response is here. Mr. Linky for Challenge #8 is directly below:

Everyone:

Have a fantastic Holiday Season!

I have had very little time to administer this site, so apologize.  Most of these posts are pre-scheduled.  Appreciate all that find time to visit now and then.  Thanks so much for your interest.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #8

(Starting Date for this Challenge is Jan, 1, 2012 — posted early to provide  proper advance notice.  Do not start this until the New Year — you can even consider this a New Year’s resolution — will repost this every Wednesday until the New Year.)

As stated in Poetry Challenge #5, the level of participation in that challenge has helped in determining the content of this challenge.

This challenge has been modified appropriately so that participation can range from heavy to light.

This challenge starts with the New Year — a type of New Year resolution.  It is the equivalent of a resolution that for 2012, “I will read a poem a day” — or “I will read a poem a week”

So here it is: for this challenge, read a poem a week from a non-established poet posting at a WordPress or other blog site and capture the link to the poem and include a brief to extended comment on your thoughts, feelings, reaction, learnings, insight, why you like or don’t like the poem, even a full analysis if you wish, etc. in regards to each poem. 

For those that don’t have time for a poem a week, the lighter version of this challenge is a poem a month.

If you are busy on a given week (or month) and miss adding an entry, just read an additional poem the next week (or month) to keep you on target for the year.  If you are doing a poem a week, your goal is to have 52 entries by the end of 2012.  If you are reading a poem a month, your goal is to have 12 entries by the end of 2012. This gives a nice list of other people’s poems that us other readers can reference and explore.

Ideally, you will start this challenge on Jan. 1, 2012.   Once again, if you miss a week (or month) just make up for it with additional entries at some other point in 2012.

You response to this challenge is a page (or post) with entries for each day (or week) which you update.  Creating a page is as easy as creating a post — just chose “Pages” from the right hand WordPress menu, between “Links” and “Comments” 

Here is a sample of such a log that contains a few sample entries.  

Please be sensitive to each rights of ownership and use links to poems as opposed to copying and pasting entire poem.  This also makes this easier to read your journal.  See sample example.

To explore various poetry blogs start at WordPress/Tag/Poetry, WordPress/Tag/Poems, WordPress/Tag/Rhymes and WordPress/Tag/Free-Verse or explore responses to challenges at dVerse. (For example, links of poets at this week’s Poet’s Pub.)

To link to you post

CLICK ON green Mr. Linky IMAGE BELOW:

If you wish, you can copy the above link and paste at the bottom (or top) of the post or page that contains your response to this challenge.  That gets even more people involved! Just simply copy (as in copy and paste) the Mister Link box above and paste on your post or page.  It’s that easy.  (Thanks to willowdot21 for the idea!)

SUMMARY:

1.  Click on green “Mister Linky” link above.

2. Enter the URL (address of your response to challenge not of your website’s home page) of your post or page that has your response to this challenge.

3. For this challenge, locate and read a poem a week (or month) by any relatively unknown poet that posts to a blog site. Follow link with your comments on poem.

4. Anyone that wishes to see responses can click on the Mister Linky link above to view links.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #7

(Starting Date for this Challenge is Jan, 1, 2012 — posted early to provide  proper advance notice.  Do not start this until the New Year — you can even consider this a New Year’s resolution — will repost this every Wednesday until the New Year.)

As stated in Poetry Challenge #5, the level of participation in that challenge has helped in determining the content of this challenge.

This challenge has been modified appropriately so that participation can range from heavy to light.

This challenge starts with the New Year — a type of New Year resolution.  It is the equivalent of a resolution that for 2012, “I will read a poem a day” — or “I will read a poem a week”

So here it is: for this challenge, read a poem a day by various established, published poets, living or dead and capture the link to the poem and a brief to extended comment on your thoughts, feelings, reaction, learnings, insight, why you like or don’t like the poem, even a full analysis if you wish, etc. in regards to each poem. 

For those that don’t have time for a poem a day, the lighter version of this challenge is a poem a week.

If you are busy on a given day (or week) and miss adding an entry, just read an additional poem the next day (or week) to keep you on target for the year.  If you are doing a poem a day, your goal is to have 366 entries by the end of 2012.  If you are reading a poem a week, your goal is to have 52 entries by the end of 2012.

Ideally, you will start this challenge on Jan. 1, 2012.   Once again, if you miss a day (or week) just make up for it with additional entries at some other point in 2012.

You response to this challenge is a page (or post) with entries for each day (or week) which you update.  Creating a page is as easy as creating a post — just chose “Pages” from the right hand WordPress menu, between “Links” and “Comments” 

Here is a sample of such a log that contains a few sample entries.  

Please be sensitive to copyright and what is public domain and not.  The law varies from country to country.  For example, in one country, a Wallace Stevens poem written in 1930 is public domain, but in another, no Wallace Stevens poems are public domain since 70 years must transpire after the death of an author before the works are in the public domain.

Here is an ordered list of references you can use to find online poems:

Gutenberg Poetry Bookshelf

Poem Hunter: Famous Poets

Gutenberg Australia

Representative Poetry Online

Poetry Foundation

Poetry Daily

Poetry 180

American Verse

American Memory Search (You can do a search for “Poetry”)

Virgo English Language Poetry

A Small Anthology of Poems

Norton Anthology of Poetry (Selected entries)

Bartleby.com/verse (Annoying Pop-up ads)

Barteby.com/verse/indexes (Annoying Pop-up ads)

American Poems (Annoying Pop-up ads)

Famous Poets and Poems (Annoying Pop-up ads)

To link to you post

CLICK ON green Mr. Linky IMAGE BELOW:

If you wish, you can copy the above link and paste at the bottom (or top) of the post or page that contains your response to this challenge.  That gets even more people involved! Just simply copy (as in copy and paste) the Mister Link box above and paste on your post or page.  It’s that easy.  (Thanks to willowdot21 for the idea!)

SUMMARY:

1.  Click on green “Mister Linky” link above.

2. Enter the URL (address of your response to challenge not of your website’s home page) of your post or page that has your response to this challenge.

3. For this challenge, locate and read a poem a day (or week) by an established, published poet, post a link to that poem on a single page that you update with each new entry. Follow link with your comments on poem.

4. Anyone that wishes to see responses can click on the Mister Linky link above to view links.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #6

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #6

This and the previous challenge are previews to a pair of challenges that will be posted around early to mid December.  If these first two challenges invoke only limited interest, than that is a good reason for me to re-think the more extensive challenges I have prepared for December.

For this challenge,  please provide a link to a page or post that references a poem on someone’s blog with commentary of your own — whether a note about how you discovered the poem, why you like the poem — or even a full analysis.

Please do not post their text — respect their ownership — just provide a link to their poem on your post or page that responds to this challenge.  (Don’t put a link to their poem on Mr. Linky — put a link to your page or posts that had your comments on the poem plus has a link to the poem discussed.

To explore various poetry blogs start at WordPress/Tag/Poetry and WordPress/Tag/Free-Verse or explore responses to challenges at dVerse.  (For example, links of poets at this week’s Poet’s Pub.)

For challenge introduction and previous challenges please see Wednesday Poetry Challenge IntroductionChallenge #1, Challenge #2 , Challenge #3 , Challenge #4 and Challenge #5. There is no time limit here, these challenges are open until site is forcibly closed down.

To link to you post

CLICK ON green Mr. Linky IMAGE BELOW:

If you wish, you can copy the above link and paste at the bottom (or top) of the post or page that contains your response to this challenge.  That gets even more people involved! Just simply copy (as in copy and paste) the Mister Link box above and paste on your post or page.  It’s that easy.  (Thanks to willowdot21 for the idea!)

SUMMARY:

1.  Click on green “Mister Linky” link above.

2. Enter the URL (address of your response to challenge not of your website’s home page) of your post or page that has your response to this challenge.

3. For this challenge, locate a poem on anyone’s blog, read carefully and provide a link to your page or post that references that poem (a link) and has your comments on that poem. You can read hundreds of poems before choosing!

4. Anyone that wishes to see responses can click on the Mister Linky link above to view links.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #5

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #5

These next two challenges are previews to a pair of challenges that will be posted around early to mid December.  If the challenges posted this and next week invoke no interest, than that is a good reason for me to re-think the more extensive challenges I have prepared for December.

For this challenge,  please provide a link to a page or post that references a poem by an established, published poet, and includes some commentary of your own — whether a note about how you discovered the poem, why you like the poem — or even a full analysis.

Please be sensitive to copyright and what is public domain and not.  The law varies from country to country.  For example, in one country, a Wallace Stevens poem written in 1930 is public domain, but in another, no Wallace Stevens poems are public domain since 70 years must transpire after the death of an author before the works are in the public domain.

I am posting my real response to the Mr. Linky prompt below but also including a sample post here.

For challenge introduction and previous challenges please see Wednesday Poetry Challenge IntroductionChallenge #1, Challenge #2 , Challenge #3 and Challenge #4. There is no time limit here, these challenges are open until site is forcibly closed down.

To link to you post

CLICK ON green Mr. Linky IMAGE BELOW:

If you wish, you can copy the above link and paste at the bottom (or top) of the post or page that contains your response to this challenge.  That gets even more people involved! Just simply copy (as in copy and paste) the Mister Link box above and paste on your post or page.  It’s that easy.  (Thanks to willowdot21 for the idea!)

SUMMARY:

1.  Click on green “Mister Linky” link above.

2. Enter the URL (address of your response to challenge not of your website’s home page) of your post or page that has your response to this challenge.

3. For this challenge, locate a poem by an established, published poet, post text to a post or insert text into a page. Follow text with your comments on poem.

4. Anyone that wishes to see responses can click on the Mister Linky link above to view links.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #4

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #4

Last challenge provided exercises that removed or added words.

This challenge is about information management by addition.

One should be skilled enough to reduce or increase the number of words in a line, stanza or poem as creative demands (or editorial requirements) dictate.

For this challenge start with a two word sentence such as

See Spot.

Add an additional word but maintain one sentence.

See Spot run.

Double the number of words from 3 to 6; stay with one sentence.

See Spot run down the road.

Double the number of words from 6 to 12 in the one sentence.

See Spot, the incredible wonder dog, run down the long winding road.

Double the number of words from 12 to 24 in one sentence.

On this chilly wintry morning, as flakes of snow tumble teasingly down,
See Spot, the incredible wonder dog, run down the long winding road.

Double the number of words from 24 to 48 in one sentence.

My friend, relax, rest, reduce your thoughts,
sit down in the most comfortable chair we have
so that on this chilly wintry morning,
as flakes of snow tumble teasingly down, 
you turn your gaze outside and See Spot,
the incredible wonder dog,
run down the long winding road.

Double the number of words from 48 to 96 in one sentence.

My friend,
once close in former times not so far ago,
please relax, rest, reduce your thoughts,
make my home your home,
sit down in the most comfortable chair we have,
this one that faces this window,
and gaze outside on this chilly wintry morning,
as flakes of snow tumble teasingly down
and ice forms like shadows on small ponds,
as you forget your busy day
and focus on all that is beyond the warm study
to a colder but truer world outside
and see Spot, the incredible wonder dog,
run down the long winding road.

Increase the number of words from 96 to 107 in one sentence.

My friend,
once close in former times not so far ago,
please relax, rest, reduce your thoughts,
make my home your home,
sit down in the most comfortable chair we have,
this one that faces this window,
and gaze outside on this chilly wintry morning,
as flakes of snow tumble teasingly down
and ice forms like shadows on small ponds,
as you forget your busy day
and focus on all that is beyond the warm study
to a colder but truer world outside and see Spot,
the incredible wonder dog,
run down the long winding road,
gathering speed with each progressive stride,
tongue hanging out in celebration.

This matches the number of words in the Wallace Stevens single sentence poem, The Snowman.  There are many more wonderful things about this Wallace Stevens poem than it consisting of one sentence, but this one single sentence is wonderfully incorporated in the whole approach and experience. (Is there any better poem than this written in the Twentieth Century?)

Next, start with a two word sentence and expand it to a 107 word sentence without taking progressive steps — try to reach the 107 number at one go!

Which approach is easier for you?

Now pick your favorite of these two versions and then modifying the words as you wish, adding and subtracting as you think appropriate, keeping the word count to 107 or more, change it to a one sentence poem.

My friend,
again,
close
as in former times
not so far ago,

when lives where simpler
and looked ahead and not back
please relax,
rest,
reduce your thoughts,

make my home your home,
sit down
deeply
in the most comfortable chair,
the one that faces this window,

and gaze outside on this chilly wintry morning,
as flakes of snow
tumble
teasingly down
and ice forms

like shadows
on small ponds,
as you forget your busy day
and focus on all that is beyond the warm study
to a colder but truer world outside

and see Spot,
the incredible wonder dog,
run down the straight, sometimes unexpectedly slippery, stretching road,
gathering speed with each progressive stride,
tongue hanging out in celebration of the sprint itself.

For additional details, please refer to Challenge #1, Challenge #2 , Challenge #3 and Wednesday Poetry Challenge Introduction.

There is no time limit here, these challenges are open until site is forcibly closed down.

To link to you post

CLICK ON Mr. Linky IMAGE BELOW:

If you wish you can copy the above link and paste at the bottom (or top) of the post or page that contains your response to this challenge.  That gets even more people involved! Just simply copy (as in copy and paste) the Mister Link box above.  It’s that easy.  (Thanks to willowdot21 for giving me the idea — she copied this on her site in her response.)

SUMMARY:

1.  Click on green “Mister Linky” link above.

2. Enter the URL (address of your response to challenge not of your website’s home page) of your post or page that has your response to this challenge.

3. For this challenge, start with a 2 words sentence and lengthen it following the steps above until you have a 107 word sentence, then change that sentence into a poem

4. Anyone that wishes to see anyone’s examples can click on the Mister Linky link above to view any and all of responses.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #3

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #3

Just to set expectations, these poetry challenges are not intended to inspire you, entertain you, or make you feel better as poet. If that happens, great!  If not, hopefully they will help sharpen your poetry skills over the long run.

So think of this not so much as playing HORSE at the basketball playground, but practicing setting a screen and then rolling towards the basket, over and over, hundreds and hundreds of time until some level of skill is developed.

So for these challenges, you won’t see something like

Write a poem using these ten words:  “easy, simple, softball, ego, who, needs, practice, just, for, fun”

or

Write a Haiku about your summer vacation.

No, in these challenges the focus will be on developing skills and overall awareness of basic poetry rudiments.

However, progress is made by small steps.  We start with very light weights gradually increasing the resistance until we can benchpress more and more.

Also, there is no place in these challenges for altering the challenge itself.  This is not an exercise where the challenge is to write a poem about a horse and then allow half of the participants to decide that they will “sort of” follow the challenge and write a poem about a large dog or a buffalo or some ant that has lost two legs and now has to deal with only four.

These challenges are very specific — and for a reason.

If you are asked to run eight half-mile laps, don’t shrug off the challenge by doing fourteen jumping jacks.

For the next several challenges, starting with this one, the focus is on information management: practice in modifying information, adding information and removing information.

This challenge has three parts.  Either follow this exactly or chose an easier program than this one — one that allows extra trips to the refrigerator and less time in the gym.  😉

First Part:

Take your poem from Wednesday Poetry Challenge #2 and starting at the very first word, count the number of words.

Now divide the number of words by 3, round down (that is, drop the remainder.) This gives you the number of words that you must change in the poem.  For example, if your poem contains 49 words, than change 16 words in the poem.

Meaning of poem can be kept the same or can change. Punctuation can change.

Second Part:

Take the just changed poem and count the number of words.  Divide by 2, rounding up to the next whole number giving you the number of words in the next version of this poem.  For example, if poem contains 49 words, than create a new version of this poem with only 25 words.

Meaning of poem must remain the same. Punctuation can change.

Third Part:

Take the just new poem created in Part Two and count the number of words.

Now divide the number of words by 3, round down (that is, drop the remainder) and this gives you the number of words that you must change in the poem.  For example, if your poem contains 25 words, than change 8 words in the poem.

Meaning of poem must remain the same. Punctuation can change.

Example:

Time has come
for us to leave this island:
a way to do such
must be discovered.

Poem has 17 words.  17/3  = 5 (rounded down to whole number).  Create a new poem changing no more and no less than 5 words:

Fate has commanded
for us to create this nightmare:
a way to  accomplish such
must be discovered.

Note that meaning of poem has changed.

Poem has 17 words, new poem must have only 9 words (17/2 rounded up.)

Fate commands:
create this nightmare.
Fate demands:
Discover how!

Note that meaning of poem doesn’t change.

Poem now has 9 words, replace 3 of these 9 words (9/3)

Fate commands:
invoke dreaded horror.
Fate demands:
Discover how!

Meaning of poem stays the same. 

Another example:

Time
Time
Time
Ticking
Like the restless heart
Informing us
We must move on —
Leave this island.
Now.

becomes

Time
Time
Dripping
Ticking
Like the relentless heart
Telling us
We should move on —
Destroy this island.
Tomorrow

and then becomes

Time,
relentless heart dripping
commands:
leave,
destroy
island
tomorrow.

and then becomes

Time,
relentless heart screeching:
depart,
destroy
island
by tomorrow.

(Notice how one word is dropped and replaced with new word later on.  That is not only acceptable but is encouraged.)

There are two intertwined parts to poetry — information and delivery of that information.  Information is what concepts are to be communicated. Delivery is how that content is communicated: using rhymes, meter or other rhythmic devices, sounds of words, etc.  Indeed, the nature of delivery affects significantly the information delivered and so has an informational aspect to itself, which in poetry may be much more important than the literal message.

For additional details, please refer to Challenge #1Challenge #2  and Wednesday Poetry Challenge Introduction.

There is no time limit here, these challenges are open until site is forcibly closed down.

To link to you post

CLICK ON Mr. Linky IMAGE BELOW:

SUMMARY:

1.  Click on green “Mister Linky” link above.

2. Enter the URL (address of your response to challenge not of your website’s home page) of your post or page that has your response to this challenge.

3. For this challenge, take your reformatted passage from a novel, short story or essay and modfiy per the instructions above. (Change 1/3 of the words, reduce the number of words by a factor of two and then change 1/3 of the words again. )

4. Anyone that wishes to see anyone’s examples can click on the Mister Linky link above to view any and all of responses.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #2

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #2

With this challenge, you take the prose selection you reformatted for Challenge #1 and convert it into a poem, based on your definition of poem.

For example,

If you found the following prose selection initially:

Time has come for us to leave this island: a way to do such must be discovered.

and reformatted it to

Time has come
for us to leave this island:
a way to do such
must be discovered.

Then your next step is to convert from poetic prose to pure poem.

What is a poem?  What is poetry?  This is based on your own definition and sense of aesthetics.

You may chose to convert the text into poetry by imposing regular meter on the text:

We seek a ship to sail us from this place
And steer us on a course that takes us home

or maybe both meter and rhyme:

We seek a ship to sail us from this shore
to take us to the home we knew before

or maybe you are more inclined to an expressive open style:

Time
Time
Time
Ticking
Like the restless heart
Informing us
We must move on —
Leave this island.
Now.

Taking the example from the opening of Theodor Dreiser’s American Tragedy:

Dusk–of a summer night.

And the tall walls of the commercial heart of an American city of perhaps 400,000 inhabitants–such walls as in time may linger as a mere fable.

And up the broad street, now comparatively hushed, a little band of six,–a man of about fifty, short, stout, with bushy hair protruding from under a round black felt hat, a most unimportant-looking person, who carried a small portable organ such as is customarily used by street preachers and singers.  And with him a woman perhaps five years his junior, taller, not so broad, but solid of frame and vigorous, very plain in face and dress, and yet not homely, leading with one hand a small boy of seven and in the other carrying a Bible and several hymn books.  With these three, but walking independently behind, was a girl of fifteen, a boy of twelve and another girl of nine, all following obediently, but not too enthusiastically, in the wake of the others.

might become

Beneath the dusk some summer night
the stretched up walls of citizens:
such walls in time as lingering tales.

And up a nearby spacious street,
hushed compared to others near,
now walks a little band of six, —
a male past fifty, short and stout,
with  hair extending shyly out
from black felt hat tilting east,
an average man, a normal man
with music from an accordion.

And at his right side walks a woman
perhaps five years still his junior,
taller, well-figured, not so broad,
but solid of frame and vigorous,
very plain in face and dress,
and yet attractive in modest ways,
leading with her hand a boy of seven
her other led by hymns and Gospel.

etc.

So simply take your formatted text from the last challenge and rework it to meet your standards for poetry. You can stop when you consider it to be a poem (as above examples), or keep working it until you consider it a good or even excellent poem.

For additional details, please reference to Challenge #1  and Wednesday Poetry Challenge Introduction.

There is no time limit here, these challenges are open until site is forcibly closed down.

To link to you post

CLICK ON Mr. Linky IMAGE BELOW:

SUMMARY:

1.  Click on green “Mister Linky” link above.

2. Enter the URL (address of response not of your website) of your post or page that has your response to this challenge. (The poem you created from the prose you selected.)

3. For this challenge, take your reformatted passage from a novel, short story or essay and add, modify and add words to keep same general meaning but to make it a real poem based on your own definition of poetry.

4. Anyone that wishes to see anyone’s examples, can click on the Mister Linky link above to view any and all of responses.

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #1

Wednesday Poetry Challenge #1

What is the different between poetry and prose?

I  cannot answer that.

Some might say poetry has evolved so that the only difference is that poetry has stanzas.  However, with the increasing popularity of “prose poetry” (poetry written in prose instead of verse) that really doesn’t hold either.

Is poetry more compact, more formal, more stylized, more imaginative, more emotional, more personal, more abstract, more symbolic?

Does poetry use more imagery?

Does poetry use poetic devices such as rhythm, meter, rhyme, alliteration, emphasis on certain sounds?

I have no idea.

That is something that each individual poet has to come to terms with.

Every poet and every reader has their preferences.  Hopefully these preferences are not static and change as the poet develops, as the reader develops, and, ideally, as the poet and reader, being the same person, develop.

For Challenge #1, pick a passage from a novel, essay or short story that qualifies as prose, but for you is particularly poetic. Then without changing a word or punctuation mark, reformat that so it appears to be poetry.

For example,

From the opening of Theodor Dreiser’s American Tragedy:

Dusk —
of a summer night.
And the tall walls of the commercial heart
of an American city of perhaps 400,000 inhabitants —
such walls as in time may linger as a mere fable.

And up the broad street,
now comparatively hushed,
a little band of six, —
a man of about fifty, short, stout,
with bushy hair protruding
from under a round black felt hat,
a most unimportant-looking person,
who carried a small portable organ
such as is customarily used
by street preachers and singers.

And with him a woman
perhaps five years his junior,
taller, not so broad,
but solid of frame and vigorous,
very plain in face and dress,
and yet not homely,
leading with one hand a small boy of seven
and in the other carrying a Bible and several hymn books.

With these three,
but walking independently
behind,
was a girl of fifteen,
a boy of twelve
and another girl of nine,
all following obediently,
but not too enthusiastically,
in the wake of the others.
It was hot,

yet

with a sweet languor
about it all.
Crossing at right angles
the great thoroughfare
on which they walked,
was a second canyon-like way,
threaded by throngs and vehicles
and various lines of cars
which clanged their bells
and made such progress
as they might amid swiftly moving streams of traffic.

Yet

the little group seemed unconscious
of anything
save
a set purpose
to make its way
between the contending
lines of traffic
and pedestrians
which flowed
by them.

How poetic is the opening to Charles Dickens’s Tale of Two Cities?

It was the best of times,
it was the worst of times,
it was the age of wisdom,
it was the age of foolishness,
it was the epoch of belief,
it was the epoch of incredulity,
it was the season of Light,
it was the season of Darkness,
it was the spring of hope,
it was the winter of despair,
we had everything before us,
we had nothing before us,
we were all going direct to Heaven,
we were all going direct the other way —
in short,
the period
was so far like
the present period,
that some of its noisiest authorities
insisted on its being received,
for good or for evil,
in the superlative degree of comparison only.

There were a king with a large jaw
and a queen with a plain face,
on the throne of England;
there were a king with a large jaw
and a queen with a fair face,
on the throne of France.
In both countries
it was clearer than crystal
to the lords of the State preserves of loaves and fishes,
that things in general were settled for ever.

So simply chose something that you’ve read before and were previously impressed by its poetic nature — or browse from the nearly endless resources of prose on the internet to find an example of poetic prose that works for you.

What and where is the benefit of this first exercise?  Does one benefit more from picking an example or from reading others’ selections?

I am completely clueless.

Enjoy this first challenge.  No selection is considered unpoetic if it is poetry for your heart, ears, soul or mind!

There are many resources for selecting prose works.   A good starting point is Project Gutenberg Australia.

Best to use something in the public domain (no longer under copyright) as Poetry Challenge #2 will also refer to your chosen “prose” text.

For further instructions, please reference the Wednesday Poetry Challenge Introduction.

To add a link to your post

CLICK ON Mr. Linky IMAGE BELOW:

SUMMARY:

1.  Click on green “Mister Linky” link above.

2. Enter the URL (address of response not of your website) of your post or page that has your response to this challenge.

3. For this challenge, take a passage from a novel, short story or essay and reformat it to resemble a poem — or a prose poem if that is your stylistic preference.

4. Anyone that wishes to see anyone’s examples, can click on the Mister Linky link above to view any and all of responses.

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