Hey Toads....Herotomost here and it is my very definite pleasure to provide the Tuesday Challenge this week. I so can't get over how fun it has been to be a part of this site. The happiness I feel revolves around the wonderful people and outstanding talent I have met here. This week, I had the fortune of getting to know Marian Kent, a.k.a. runawaysentence a little bit better. I read through many of her past poems that I hadn't read to date and enjoyed her interviews and her prose, all amazing. She is as prolific as the day is long. I am always impressed with writers who can navigate a sweeping description, conjure emotion that could drape the entire surface of the earth and float on rafts constructed of angry metaphors. Add the atomic real bomb.....a little nugget that everyone can immediately identify with, a punch in the mouth, a "hey that is so my life" and you have poetry that encompasses span (horizontal) and depth (vertical). Going deep is what Marian does very well and it stems from her outstanding sense of what's real and how people react to that reality.
Soooo.....my challenge to her was to read the following quote from Stephen King's Duma Key ( I so love it) and write a poem inspired by the quote:
"Be prepared to see it all. If you want to create--God help you if you do, God help you if you can--don't you dare commit the immorality of stopping on the surface. Go deep and take your fair salvage. Do it no matter how much it hurts."
- Stephen King, Duma Key
For all you King haters....pretend someone else said it...cuz...that is a killer quote I think.
Marian didn't just show up for the contest, she came in pen blazing, a pocket full of depth charges, and a map to China via a straight line right through the center of the earth. I am super proud of her and hope you all will welcome this one with open arms and open minds....here we go.
Like that desert rock I long
to sprawl across, arching my spine,
fire radiating from back to belly,
my heat rising, you're hard, strong,
of the earth.
But you are cold,
flinching at my joyful tug on your
heartsleeve at the moment he said
I can't feel this way much longer,
expecting to survive, and he's right,
Regularly you play me
like Elliott Easton's guitar, loud
and with power.
Then like a peony
bud, tightly wrapped, heavy with ants,
I heave and fling open, showing off,
reaching for the ground.
I can hear
no song but yours, my bouquet tuned
to your sun.
Those are my salad days.
Your untouchableness and my
frailty are difficult to think about,
harder to write.
I move through days
contained and staid, a juniper bonsai
with cello and piano soundtrack,
occasionally bursting out in song and
dance, k-pow! like a Jet jonesing for
Mostly, it's better to
pretend all is well, steady on like
hardy perennials, reliable for spring
fireworks, like dogwood, lilac, or my
favorite, forsythia, year after year,
no redress necessary.
alone means slow death.
composing you a ripe symphony in
rainbow colors, tracing like hyacinth
and needing to be tended.
Haaaaaaa!!!!!!! Yeah baby!!! I told you, I told you, but you wouldn't believe!
Marian...thank you so much for putting up with my nonsense....and for being one of my favorites around these parts. Big round of applause, and keep on writing Girly Q...cuz we deserve it!