It’s that wonderful time of year again, to honor and celebrate all things poetic- Poetry and Poets for April’s National Poetry Month!
But before I post my first poems, I wanted to segue from a post last year where I introduced the topic of visual Poetry Journaling. I mentioned starting a Pinterest board of visual poetry to get inspired, and indeed, this all started a new journey begun last April to incorporate more visuals on my otherwise white pages. The biggest push into this wonderful world has been the many artists I discovered on IG who inspired quick, 15 minute journal pages, abstract moods, collage, found poems, asemic writing, mindful mending, and messy mixed media techniques. You can follow my arty discoveries here on IG @OrbitingOracle.
Blending arts and media in this way makes a lot of sense for any artist, and why not? For me, my poems are never separate from musical Muses, which are never separate from lyrics, which are never separate from the constant visuals- all of which is fed by emotion, imagination, spark, and color. To explore this gorgeous cross fertilization, I began a journey into the art world via classes, art challenges, and personal projects for the first time as I set about to jazz up my journals.
I also mostly make my own journals now, made of different papers (watercolor, scrap, sketch, junk, and vintage). While I’m not there yet- a poetry journal style that leaves ample space for words and forms with a dance between image, texture, color, and written sentiment- the journey and discoveries have been fascinating; I feel like a poet-musician wandering about one mixed media artist’s studio after another as I try varied things- and it’s been a blast! But my overall aim is to bring it all home; spacious pages that hold my poems ensconced in visuals when the mood strikes.
So ‘what if…we told ourselves that nothing else mattered but our art in April?’ Here is my Day 1 poem:
For National Poetry Month this year, I’m excited to try different art and collage visuals with my poems, with cues coming from my usual favorite poetic forms (free verse, short haiku, waka, tanka…) and others. As usual, inspirations will be more spontaneous than cued; overheard conversations, other poets’ work, my Muses, and scattered prompts.
And because I always make it a point to buy more poetry in April from local bookstores and small publishers, (YES!- Support Poets: read/buy more Poetry!) I will be also be showing you favorite poet authors and recent book purchases. Please leave a comment below to let me know if you are also writing and posting poetry for the next 29 days, or just say Hi!!
Awakening is our first offering praise, an open eye taking in first light, space, color ~ A stretch, body’s first gift of movement, vibration, cells alighting, muscles expand, remembering~ Gratitude. Warm contentment, Freedom before thought weightless presence, first breath, Joy ~ our ultimate prayer.
I saw you tonight, just after sunset, plucking small scales from
sand, the Pacific rolled back as far as vast, timeless- your slate cleaned by
expanse, even the crabs withdrew in yearning, your tears glistened grey
I saw you tonight, just after sunset, plucking small scales from sand, the Pacific rolled back as far as vast, timeless- your slate cleaned by expanse, even the crabs withdrew in yearning, your tears glistened grey breaching a swell, a strait, the dunes of your cheeks, hope and fog swirling
cumulus above hurt. These are the vistas you will forget by morning, as you place each scale like a sequin on the bare skin of your shoulders, filling in blanks, erasing vulnerable, to become or shed, a counterbalance mended in
dreamtime, where only the fish know, pelagic ones drinking down your tears each night, swimming into bays, spits, coves, to shed more scales to help you cover, mend, soothe that pale membrane, the cool damp of your exposed back, where raven’s wings have stopped just shy of whole, full, metamorphosis fettered, that stasis where truth shivers itself warm.
when I came to see you,
time was the shirt on your back
unraveling as we walked…
This visit, when I came to see you, time was the shirt on your back unraveling as we walked. You led the way, down flower fan path, your hand so firm on mine, it pressed each moment from blood into bone and back- new territory, before desert, my skin yielded in tiny coils, touched chert in Rock-that-tells-stories, its crevices filled with moss and shell, wet waving tentacles.