Cosmic Egg!

My first book!
Now available from MoonPath Press!
http://moonpathpress.com/BrendanMcBreen.htm

NaPoWriMo Days 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 2017

A prompt promptly from Chris:
Day 26:
“Write a couple of short poems embracing an absurd idea as a reality which perhaps comments on popular culture, or language or history or if you must politics.”

Absurd idea!
I never write about absurd ideas.

Two:

I don’t know what it is
but its green, leafy, and growing
so it can stay
the fact
that its growing from my spine
complicates matters…

Four:

The number between two and four
should be abolished
shouldn’t even be said!
its and evil number
which intends to make the world gay
its true!
do the math
you’ll see
saying the number three
can even cause tyops!
it shuld b ablolished!
either that
or just re-name it
call it un-four
or domestic two
or a same-numeral-three
but for the love of all that’s holy
don’t call it three!

Day 27:
From Chris: “Let’s use anaphora in our poem today.”

once upon a time
no, it was twice
twice upon a time
no, that’s not it either
once
upon a place
a place upon a time
once
in place of twice
once upon an ounce of time
there was a place
once
upon a time

Day 28:
Write a poem about a sandcastle.

each grain
in its place
each shell
a question mark
on the continuity
of existence
the tide-line
marks the starting point
run fast enough
and don’t look back
the castle is gone
you’ve made it past the shore
with no where else to go
so sit
and wait
for the tide to recede
and
build another castle

Day 29:
From Chris: “Pick 4 or more Titles of current Best Sellers (there are several types of lists to choose these from) Choose 4 titles from the lists. Use the titles (as close to intact as possible) in a poem 4 to 8 lines long.”

Cosmic Egg
Not Aloud
Gone to Gold Mountain
Tree Talk

I heard the tree talk
it spoke of an acorn
which had gone to gold mountain
and grew into a great oak
it whispered about the cosmic egg
and how when it hatched
all the birds in existence
flew in circles whispering
I asked the tree
how it know all of this
the birds
it said
the birds bring stories
bring news
I asked to hear more
not aloud said the tree
or people will think you’re crazy

Day 30:
From Chris:
“Choose 4 lines from what you have written in the last 29 days. These lines become lines 1,3,5, and 8. Write new material for the 2nd , 4th , 6th and 7th lines to create your final NaPoWrimo 2017 poem.”

1 Previously Written Line
2
3 Previously written line
4
5 Previously Written line
6
7
8 Previously written line

it’s an evil number
once upon an ounce of time
each shell a question mark
people will think you’re crazy

people will think you’re crazy
calling yourself a poet
its an evil number
they will say
once upon an ounce of time
they will implore you
but the tide writes poetry too
each shell a question mark

its an evil number
the one you’re thinking of
people will think you’re crazy
if you count to it out loud
each shell a question mark
in the riptide of your mind
but once long ago you measured with imaginary numbers
ounce upon an ounce of time

NaPoWriMo Day 24, 25 2017

I forgot something important…
But I think I remember it now…

Isn’t being mysterious fun 🙂

Day 24:
From the amazing Chris Jarmick: “Write a poem about the alphabet, or letters, or your favorite or least favorite letters of the alphabet, or a relationship you have with one or more letters of an alphabet. The poem should be in English but the alphabet could be other than English. You get the idea.”

I

The above is the shortest poem in the English language, its an acrostic and it contains the entire universe.

I’d forgotten
and I compromised
on too much
I might still compromise
its a bad habit
and some limitations
are hard to let go of

I

its a word
a letter
a state of being

sometimes
it gets lost
in the needs and wants
of other I’s

but
there is only one
I that I am stuck with

so
perhaps
its time
to remember
once again
that this I
the only one I have
needs to be
a priority
sometimes
if not more

Day 25:

Upside-down is the theme, write a poem.

Another prompt that I don’t know what to do with that Chris is blaming me for coming up with…

Okay, I’m not going to write about a cake…
Not going to write about Australia…

How about this:

a bird
landed on my toe
I shivered
my knees buckled
and my hips swayed
I clenched my stomach
tightened my chest
ignored the pain in my neck
and the top of my head
and stood as still as I could
hoping
the sparrow
wouldn’t fly off
carrying me to its nest

Happy Writing!

NaPoWriMo Day 23 2017

Day 23:
From Chris: “Write a poem revealing an ugly truth.”

every day is Earth Day
which is why I am sad

every day is Earth Day
even after the Earth forgets us

every day is Earth Day
but there is no human day

there is no us day
human beings
are not necessary
sometimes
not wanted

all of our oils
plastics
radiation
and chemical spills

will outlast us
but Earth
will adapt
life
will adapt

or perish

if that is the plan

if there is a plan

and if there is a plan
we
human beings
aren’t a part of it

***

Happy Writing!

NaPoWriMo Day 20, 21, 22 2017

Happy Earth Day!

…hope its not the last one…

Day 20:

Write a poem which includes at least six homonyms, words which are pronounced the same but spelled different. Use as many as you can.

two too many homonyms
could ruin this poem
perhaps if I draw a rune
I could look in the eye
of fate and debate hexagonal
hexes by moonlight
or say bye to future
I didn’t want anyway
but that is too easy
so I must decide whether
or not to chance the weather
and if sew this poem together
like so many others
with a question?

Day 21:

From Chris Jarmick, who else? “Use at least 5 completely made-up nonsense/sound words in a poem at least 8 lines in length.”

fiverently leveling five
words in a flurdish manner
to conpensquait the forithiner
of flounderings
without discongirely
being sopilinated
at least not too much
but I digress
I am comspounding on important
elocutions of simple
err
not a conspiridilly of fancifuitful
fate
so excuse me
while I underthroingly punt
this poetater into the void

Day 22:

Find twelve words related to geology, now use them in a love poem (or anti-love poem).

ablation
removal
of surface

I am not magma
I live
on the surface

I don’t want to be removed

not by acidic mine drainage
not by an active volcano
although that was better for Pompeii
than oil waste in the water

I want an actinolite view of the world
a world outside
the human
I want to live in an amethyst
fossilized with ammonite
in an andalusite dream

I want to use “a” until I
exist
in an A+ sort of world
not deranged by anyone else’s
angle of unconformity

my aquifer of emotion
is porous enough for me

but you are you
and you
are extinction
bound only by a thin thread of
-insert geological term beginning with “a” here-

and I have nothing more to insert

***

Okay so not quite 12, but its a good place to end. Albeit an oddly sexual kind of break-up end…

Anyway, Happy Writing!

NaPoWriMo Day 10-19 2017

Alright, I’m back… Where did I go?
Not sure, but back to poetry!

Day 10:

Now take your bad poem the prompt result for day 8), and shove it in a blender, rearrange the lines or fragments of lines and create a new poem. Try to add nothing and use all of the source poem if you can.

oh good…
sniff my butt
I’m in no hurry
stay!
sit!
pee
but don’t get any ideas…

I’ll just chew the toilet
no…
my neighbors don’t bark
okay
yes, bury all my cash
say I don’t like sleeping out all night

I didn’t walk up ahead bothered
do I write down the why
neither
wallet and yes
they even know car keys

you drink and go

and
of
at the
to I …

Day 11:

From Chris: “Take a poem you admire by a famous poet and re-write it. Pay homage to its style, honor its theme, its tone but don’t just write a parody of the original poem – honor it. Tell us what the poem is.”

In the interest of catching up, how about Basho 🙂

old poet
leaps into
the sound of typing

Day 12:

From Chris: “Pick a favorite film director or film series and figure out a way to write about it that isn’t obvious or straightforward.”

its like our current
politics, but the Trump role
is missing a nose

Day 13:

Use the names of six different fish in a poem about politics.

One Trout
Two Salmon
Red Blow Fish
Blue Flounder
Some days the Shark gets you
Other days its Shark sushi
And no matter what kind
of bottom dweller rises to the top
the Sunfish will always be there tomorrow

Day 14:

Revisit a faerie tale character, put them in a bar, now write a poem.

Snow White was out cold
surrounded by seven drunk dwarfs
pissed off because some ass just called them dwarfs
but before a fight could break out
the Hansom Prince cab drove up
and the driver
all four hundred and fifty pounds
burst through the door
smelling like an ash tray screwed a sleep deprived ham
he wiped his nose on his shirt
and bellowed
someone here call a cab
cause if this is the wrong bar again
you could all kiss my ass
it was loud enough
even Snow White woke momentarily
you’re cute she slurred
before passing out once more
and she slept happily ever after
until the hangover woke her

Day 15:

From Chris:
“Erasure. Take a magazine article, essay or text of more than 1500 words (yes you can use a few pages from a book) and eliminate words, leaving behind your poem. You’ll want to transform the text into something completely different than what it is by doing this. You can fudge just a little bit by adding a few modifiers and connecting words if absolutely needed (the, and) but keep the words in the order they would be in the article. We aren’t rearranging the words, or borrowing words and phrases to reassemble into a (cut-out) poem (William Burroughs style)…we are creating an erasure poem. Some always ask… is this really a thing? A way people ‘write’ poetry? It is indeed… and it does take patience, skill and some craft to do it very well. You can create a meter or even rhyme if you want… though don’t be tempted to change word order around…. (if you need to change a tense…add an ‘ed’ or ‘s’…I think that’s okay… some don’t… so it’s up to you). Have at it NaPoWriMo-ers…..”

words eliminate you
transform into fudge
just a little
and absolutely keep rearranging
borrowing creating
ask
is this thyme
be tempted
order need
change
add
it’s up to you

Day 16:

Pick a random line from a book of poetry, write the opposite of this line.

Use the opposite as your first line and the random line as your last and write the poem between.

“The house plants always have a look”
From ‘a poison tree’ Mercer Mayer

outdoor cats never blink

the poem:

outdoor cats never blink
they eat twitter for breakfast
leave you the beak
break vases
don’t do facebook
and when in the mood
they hunt
sometimes
for mice
sometimes
for toes
sometimes
for a little nibble
a bit of salad to wash down the blood
when the cat seems board
the house plants always have a look

Day 17:

From Chris: “Acronyms – Create some original Acronyms – to use in your poem. And try to do something like this with at least 3 of original Acronyms:”

Create
Original
Acronym
Poem

Forget what should be
Understand life should be lived
Not put off

Give
Up
Nirvana

Day 18:

Reinvent the wheel, write a poem that goes in a circle but takes you somewhere else. Begin and end the poem with the same line, however try to make it so the context of the poem changes the meaning of the first line by the time you get to the end.

Give us
your tired
your poor
your huddled masses

no check that
we don’t want them anymore

we want your oil
your mineral rights
and new market places
to exploit

and we want it now
give it
give it
give us!

Day 19:

From Chris: “Look at words on boxes of snacks, cereal, frozen foods. Choose three at a time exactly as you find them. (Even ingredients) Use at least one set of three words in each line of your work. Make sure it is at least 6 lines.”

this side up to no good
made with real milk
may cause indigestion
product of Chile
but proudly made in the U.S.A.
which is why the contents are under pressure

Happy Writing!

NaPoWriMo Day 6,7,8,9 2017

Yet again I’ve fallen behind… Its a busy month!

Now, Day 6

Find a piece of music without words, listen to it and write a poem as the words or simply inspired by the piece.

Never by Coil

inside and outside
flowers bloom
like Issa said
on the roof of hell

outside and inside
dancers dance
in circles
circles in circles

on the roof of hell
angels sing
angels dance
flowers bloom

beneath the ceiling of heaven
flowers wilt
dancers fall
devils sing

beneath the ceiling
we wait
for our bones to dance
among the flowers

Day 7
From Chris Jarmick:
“The Septolet (SEP-TOE-LAY) has 7 written lines. There are 2 types. Let’s try to write a formal and informal Septolet. A formal septolet is 14 syllables and an informal septolet is 14 words. The idea is to capture a moment or image in possibly two separate ways.”

the last
bluebell
attracts

the first
butterfly
but then
rain

***

how can
I write a poem
in just
fourteen words?

oops,
I just
did

Day 8:
Write a bad poem, no pressure, let yourself go and write the worst poem you can.

(Do not make this a really short poem because in a few days we’ll be doing something else with what you write!)

sit!
stay!

no…

I didn’t say pee

okay sniff my butt
but don’t get any ideas…

oh good…
chew up my wallet and all my cash

yes, yes
bark at the neighbors all night
they don’t like sleeping
and neither do I

go ahead
drink out of the toilet
I’m in no hurry

and bury the car keys

I’ll just walk

I don’t know why I even bothered
to write you down…

Day 9
From Chris:
“Write a denial poem.

Deny something true or untrue in your own or another’s voice.”

On Chris’s blog
Poetry is Everything
he has been attributing
strange poetry prompts to me
its not true
like the bad poem
I would never encourage people to write bad poems
I think people should write good poems
he also said I told people to write
in the voice of an extinct animal
how sad
that Chris can’t admit his prompts are tiresome
and who would want to write in an extinct voice anyway
people want contemporary poetry
not dead animals
dead animals make me sad
but Chris
he outdid himself
he said I suggested writing a poem to a piece of music
that doesn’t have words!
how presumptuous!
If a piece of music has no words
don’t you think
maybe
its not supposed to have words?
I don’t know what Chris is thinking
it boarders on slander
not only is he trying to pass his bad ideas off as mine
he keeps taking credit for my poem starters and septolets!
the nerve!

p.s.
I deny writing this poem!
this is a terrible piece!
somehow this poem is all Chris’s fault too…

Thats all for now!
Happy writing!

NaPoWriMo April 4,5 2017

Day 4
Write a poem in the voice of an extinct animal.

Oh I’ve tried tweezing
and lasers and chemicals
and razors and waxing
but it comes back each time
woolier and woolier

***

we put daisies
over their eyes
because the eyes of flowers
are always open
looking to the light

we visit them
because like us
they are lonely
we paint our stories on the walls
and wave good-bye
through the millennia

Day 5
(from Chris Jarmick)
Write a poem that gives unconventional advice. Any style, any form.

there is a time
in everyone’s life
when you have to make the choice
salad
or new pants
I recommend ice cream

***

How to train your cat in four easy steps.

1:
First, learn to understand what it is your cat is trying to tell you.

2:
Second, do what you’re told.

3:
Third, realize who is training who and explain to your cat that you are the one in charge. At this point your cat will either not understand, or more likely, not care.

4:
Finally, get used to it and repeat step two.

NaPoWriMo April 1,2,3, 2017

YES! It is once again National Poetry Writing Month.
I am a bit late getting started, but I’m a poet so perhaps it’s to be expected.

This is National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) in some cultures known as April, it is the month where poets and poets-who-don’t-know-they-are-poets write a poem a day for the entire month. The idea is to write, not write excellent, although writing excellently is accepted too, but bad poems are welcomed and encouraged as well as good poems and things which might be poems and might not be poems but were written none the less. To facilitate this writing poetry end, many poets post poetry prompts for each day of the month. But I’m lazy so instead of posting my own prompts I’m just going to follow along with Chris Jarmick’s prompts from Poetry is Everything at https://chrisjarmick.wordpress.com. There are also poetry writing prompts at www.napowrimo.net, so I might mix it up a bit… or not.

As I mentioned before, I am late, its the 3rd and I have yet to start. So catching up, here we go!

From Chris Jarmick, Day 1:

“First lines of books. Choose 5 to 6 first lines in books that you admire. Mix them up to create two new sentences. Use one sentence to begin your poem and another to end your poem. From the sentences you chose use three words from one or more of the sentences as they originally appeared (in order) in lines 2, 3, 4, and 5.”

“It was my destiny to join in a great experience.”
The Journey to The East Herman Hesse

“The Time Traveler (for so it will be convenient to speak of him) was expounding a recondite matter to us.”
The Time Machine H. G. Wells

“The messages were found written in touch-gland exudation on degerminated acacia seeds laid in rows at the end of a narrow, erratic tunnel leading off from one of the deeper levels of the colony.”
The Compass Rose Ursula K. Le Guin

“It was a small town by a small river and a small lake in a small Northern part of a Midwest state.”
The Halloween Tree Ray Bradbury

“I think… that I would rather recollect a life misspent on fragile things than spent avoiding moral debt.”
Fragile Things Neil Gaiman

“It was very late, and Raymond, fighting insomnia, went for a midnight snack.”
Wiener Dog Art Gary Larson

My Poem:

Destiny, the traveler found was written in small rather fragile messages.
In a great touch-gland river, a small erratic part that would end the journey went for seeds.
Seeds small in a Northern misspent life.
I think it was my expounding in rows at the end that went leading to moral debt.
The colony, avoiding my small fight, found destiny leading off to a life very fragile.
I would rather snack on misspent acacia seeds that join the deeper levels of insomnia.

Day 2:
From Chris:

Write a poem which uses repetition.
A poem that uses repetition, write one.

Writing a Poem

So I’m writing a poem
a poem a poem
its a poem about writing
writing a poem
So I’m writing this poem
and while I’m writing this poem
it occurs to me
that while writing this poem
I might actually be writing a different poem
and not even know it
so I stopped writing this poem
and made an effort to write the other poem
then it occurs to me
that while I think I might be writing this other poem
I might actually be writing the first poem
but I’m not finished with either poem
so I keep writing
not knowing which poem I am writing actually
so I am writing this poem
which might be another poem
which could also be the first poem
then I think
a poem a poem
I am writing a poem
whichever poem it may be
then I stop

Day 3
From Chris:

“Choose one of these random 10 words lists. Can you use at lease 6 words from the list you choose in 6 lines or less? Can you use all 10? Can you use 9 or 10 words in 4 lines?

Abstract, force, lover, gossip, reporter, beg, captivate, cause, sentiment, bulletin
Think, toll, race, pure, visual, trap, revival, mistreat, harm, judicial
Wait, ranch, scrape, retire, sanctuary, session, recover, major, determine, integration”

you will not force me
to gossip, to beg
to captivate sentiment for a cause
cause here’s the bulletin
though it may be too abstract for you lover to get
I’d do it for free

you think a toll would stop me
or a trap intended to mistreat or harm
perhaps pure judicial conniving
no, I will win this race
and if I should fall
my revival will be a visual masterpiece
I said
I will do it for free

wait, no, you retire to your sanctuary
our session is over
don’t scrape the ranch dressing from your tongue
I will do it for free
your pride will recover
this isn’t a major defeat
my determination will find integration
in this new equation
you only need to determine how to cope
I will do it for free
but if you really want to pay me
that’s fine by me too

Thank you, you’re welcome, that’s it for now. Please write your own poems. Happy NaPoWriMo. More tomorrow (unless I’m late again).

Happy Writing!

NaPoWriMo 2016 Day 30!

Its here already!
oops… its May first… I missed it…

But here are some prompts anyway:

Two from Chris Jarmick:

write an “I” poem without using “I” and/or create a subversive dialogue of the writing of an “I” poem within the poem you create.

and

Create a poem made up of lines that you used in poems you have written recently (preferably NaPoWriMo poems you have been writing). Create three 4 to 6 line stanzas made up of previously written lines.

no “I” poem
or not an eye poem

there is no aye in team
only nose
the person who is typing means “no” in the plural sense
not the sniffy thing on your face
but none the less
the point is clear
teamwork is about crushing teammates
that’s why politics works so well

but this poem is not about me
and it should be
but not including my eyes
which are by the way
two of me nicest features
so it’s difficult
saying things like eye sea yoo
when typing letters between ‘u’ and ‘o’
on the keyboard is forbidden
verboten
kireji
and you should understand
when it comes to writing about me
and not using that letter
its hard to be serious
which is a normal state of mind
for the person typing this piece who is not and never will be in this poem referred to as “I”

Poem from lines from previous NaPoWriMo lines:

try folding night
its harder than it looks

don’t ask me why the file won’t close
I’m busy folding night

I was thinking
and it hurt

hold that thought
ow

laughing
so you think its funny now?!

only twenty-eight characters
well I guess twenty-eight characters were funny
but the rest of it wasn’t

in that case, you say, Breakfast Can Wait
at least until after I’m done folding night

only at the end
do I realize I am talking to myself…

And here some other prompts of mine which didn’t make it into the list this year:

Write four lines where the first line is made of only one syllable words, the second two, the third three, and the fourth four syllable words:

a light shines
over highway signage
heavenly quietude
emancipates pterodactyls

Double acrostic, first letters of each line spell something, so do the last letters:

Words Sting

with all the slices
on watch for the night
rats will name themselves Vivi
doing their best to grown
singing for the time being

Write a poem which includes unusual soup ingredients, explain why you are using these ingredients:

add self-doubt for realism
include the bone of a recently waxed octopus
or if octopi don’t have bones
use a screwdriver
preferably Philips
you will need the iron
and something solid to complain about
add a five leaf clover
not for luck
but because its green
and green is your new favorite color
if only for today
add the wish of an autistic child
it needs a little sweetness
now add the bitterest argument you have ever had with your father
and boil for ten minutes
before deciding on carry-out

Find the scientific name of a plant, write a poem describing characteristics of the plant while rhyming with the scientific name:

Lavender
Lavandula angustifolia
so much nicer than magnolia
39 species, relative to mint
sent from the deodorant company gods
or the medulla of crocodilia
august Roman flower
my favorite color
Lavandula angustifolia
holier hues haunt many dreams
but I only smell your essential oil
your perfect meme
perfect for my dream

Okay! That’s it! Thanks and write more poetry!