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Poetry Princess Project — July 2016

Oh, my friends.
This was not an easy one for me.

I don’t know if I’m too distracted by the chaos that is teens plus work plus summer.
Or if I’m just intimated by Kay Ryan.

But this month’s “In the Style of” poems — sheesh!
If I had a fainting couch, I’d take to it!

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So I tried a couple of different poems as my muse (aka, mentor text) and the one I came closest to not-hating is this one. It’s based on a poem of Ryan’s called Turtle that starts like this:

Who would be a turtle who could help it?
A barely mobile hard roll, a four-oared helmet,
she can ill afford the chances she must take
in rowing toward the grasses that she eats.

Mine is called Egg, and goes like this:

EGG
By Liz Garton Scanlon
After TURTLE, by Kay Ryan

Who would be an egg who could help it?
An off-kilter globe, wheel with a wacky rim,
tight-rope walker who can’t stand up for herself.
All soft-hearted on the inside but not on her sleeve –
there is no sleeve, no reach nor grasp nor opening –
nothing saying here’s who I am and how I feel.
Just this flattened wheel, matte gaze, blank slate,
hardened shell-like-stone sheer limestone cliff
of a face — strong, long and serious. Contained.
Until, from deep within, a knock like a heartbeat
only sharper, clearer. More pointed. And the illusion
cracks wide open, into cries and downy wings.

eggs

Read the fantastic poems by my pals here:

Tanita
Andi
Kelly
Laura
Sara
Tricia

And it’s Poetry Friday here!
Happy summer, friends!

Posted on 07/01/2016 05:00 am
 

7 Comments

  1. I’m so far beyond non-hate into *delight* at this poem. Who would’ve thought I could empathize with an egg, but you’ve done it. So much to love here—

    there is no sleeve, no reach nor grasp nor opening –
    nothing saying here’s who I am and how I feel.

    Oh, man. Don’t we have days like that? I’m going to call them egg days from now on.

    But it ends with so much hope, that glorious “cries and downy feathers.” Ah…simply lovely.

    Reply

  2. Liz! I am ready to faint after reading this. You nailed it!

    “a knock like a heartbeat
    only sharper, clearer. More pointed. ”

    Yes! I can so see the mysterious excitement hidden in that “blank slate” “wheel with a wacky rim”. Never seeing eggs the old way again! AND: somehow this all connects to “teens plus work plus summer” re: “the illusion
    cracks wide open, into cries and downy wings.”

    Reply

  3. See, here’s the thing about hating your own poem: it does you no good. The rest of us are going to cushion its fragile shell away from your criticism, and sit on it, keeping it warm until it becomes something surprising to you.

    It’s already there… the shell has cracked. This is beautiful, Liz.

    Reply

  4. Oh, my. I thought the beginning was good–love that tight-rope walker. And then you moved deeper and deeper. “a knock like a heartbeat” and then, then, that ending. Liz, how could the word “hate” come anywhere close to this poem?

    Reply

  5. Lovely!! I could hear that little egg speaking!

    Reply

  6. This …
    “Just this flattened wheel, matte gaze, blank slate,
    hardened shell-like-stone sheer limestone cliff
    of a face — strong, long and serious. ”

    I ditto Tanita’s words here. And I agree with Andi, as I’ll never look at an egg in the same way again. In fact, I want to run into the kitchen, take one out, and just admire it. YOU did that.

    Lovely poem.

    Reply

  7. Oh, wow! So perfect!

    I love this:

    “Contained.
    Until, from deep within, a knock like a heartbeat
    only sharper, clearer. More pointed.”

    Reply

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