Definition

One must make a distinction however: when dragged into prominence by half poets, the result is not poetry, nor till the autocrats among us can be “literalists of the imagination”—above insolence and triviality and can present for inspection, imaginary gardens with real toads in them, shall we have it.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Sunday Mini-Challenge--(Hopefully) Promising Prompt


Hi Toads! I sit here on the eve of Valentine’s Day contemplating what it actually means to pour those little chalky hearts out of their cloudy plastic bag, and give someone a teeny dusty purple one, red-inked, “I’m Yours.”

(Textual analysis that, as is typical, involves reading commentary, not hearts.) 

After much textual analysis, I have decided that all those candy phrases--"be mine," "I'm yours," "Cutie Pie," are promises of a sort, however delible the ink may be:  a vow to be yours, a vow to accept you as mine, a promise to think of the recipient as cute.  (For at least a day or two.)

As I write this, the mountains where I live are laden with snow. 

And it's already dark out.  

Don't worry--I don't truly live in a nest, but it may hold promise for some.

Which leads me to the prompt, so beautifully illustrated by the end of Robert Frost’s poem, “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”: 

“The woods are lovely, dark and deep
But I have promises to keep
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.”

Promises!  Given.  Exacted.  Kept.  Broken.  Slept on.  (Or through.) 




Your task, should you choose to accept it, is to write something born out of a promise. This can be a promise of yours or of someone else, or of some remembered or imagined someone else.  Or of a remembered or imagined you!  


Maybe write about the promises of vampire elephants.

Or non-vampire elephants. 

Please do not feel bound to write a Valentine’s poem, or a poem that relates to love.  You can if you wish simply write about an experience or day or object that seems particularly promising, or unpromising; a poem, if you will, about anticipation or disappointment.  

And now because Shay likes them, here's one more elephant, who has a big heart but also looks a little disappointed to me.  (Valentine's Day perhaps not great for all!)  Originally done as a print on glass-- 


Finally, I want to give a shout-out to Kerry O'Connor who's done so very much to make me, Manicddaily, a/k/a Karin Gustafson, a/k/a Outlawyer, feel welcome--and whose work and online presence have really helped me keep my own work going.  Thanks also to all of you. 

 (And lastly, for those who don't know me--the pics are mine.  Sometime I am going to post a prompt with pictures to write about--I wasn't considering any of these are particularly promising in that area, but you are certainly free to use them, with attribution.) 

Please link below.  

28 comments:

Lolamouse said...

Love all the cute elephants! Will give this one a good think over the weekend!

Kerry O'Connor said...

Thanks for an innovative prompt, Karin.

Happy Valentine's day to all.

Outlawyer said...

Thank you, Kerry and Lola. k.

Kenia Cris said...

I love elephants too! And thanks for an adorable prompt!

Björn Rudberg said...

I will need to think about this.. My dark mind goes to broken promises.

blueoran said...

Hi Karin, so good to see the dancin' elephants here ... I've been KO'd by internet woes (had to get a new modem) so I'm slow making Friday's rounds ... Great question raised here, is any promise made by love eternal? Just because it didn't deliver the promised life, did it not deliver the meaningful one? Anyway ... looking forward to what the rest of the lily pads come up with.

Outlawyer said...

Hi Brendan--so sorry about your internet problems--loved your poem. k.

Fireblossom said...

So many cutie elephants! I love them! This challenger post is so cute and fun to read. I'll see what I can do to whip up something, er, promising. :-)

Outlawyer said...

Ha. Thanks, Shay. I mean it to be quite broad--I'm almost done with mine--which is rather extraneous but was written just freshly for it! (Ha.) k.

Kerridwen said...

Did a haiku link form.. Honestly I'm not happy with my poetry at all these days but I feel if I grind on something good might happen ;)

Ella said...

My mom collects elephants-so your cute drawings make me smile, extra big!

Happy Valentine's Day, Toads~

Thank you, Karin!
@>--------------

Outlawyer said...

Thanks, Ella. k.

hedgewitch said...

I have dressed up an old (unpublished) one for this Karin--a very thought provoking challenge and I wish I could have written something just for it, but I think I have come close to being on topic, anyway. Back in the morning.

Outlawyer said...

Thanks, Joy. Thanks much for participating.

I have taken the liberty of posting a second--a rather silly one that came to me this evening-- (Kerry--feel free to delete link if two is one too many.) k.

Kerry O'Connor said...

I was suffering from heat exhaustion last week (we had a 6 day/night heatwave with temps above 100F)and now realize I jumped the gun with my early Valentine's prompt. Thanks to Karin for presenting us with an open-ended challenge that steers the writer away from the cliched sentiment of V Day.

Cheers!

Heaven said...

Cute drawings K ~ Thanks for the lovely challenge & wishing you all happy Sunday ~

Grace

Outlawyer said...

Hey Kerry--I really enjoyed your prompt, and I am so sorry to hear of the heat--we are kind of at the opposite end of the spectrum/temperature/world right now in my little corner with temps below zero (Farenheit). It is quite beautiful, though.

Thanks. k .

Kim Nelson said...

This prompt encouraged me to consider several issues. Hoping I can get them condensed into readable words. Thanks, Karin!

Marian said...

A prompt from Karin, dig it!

Outlawyer said...

Hey Marian! k.

Kenia Cris said...

It took me forever to write because it was Valentine's, I knew what I wanted to write about but I didn't know how to start. So I revisited a bunch of old letters and there it was. Hope it fits.

Thanks Karin. <3

Outlawyer said...

Thank you, Kenia, for your beautiful poem. k.

Margaret said...

Off to watch Downton Abbey!!! But I will be back to visit and comment.

Other Mary said...

Well, I've gone quite a way from this but at least I've written something! Finally!

Outlawyer said...

No worries, Mary. k.

Susie Clevenger said...

Love all your art work and so sorry for showing up late. Great challenge!!

Ella said...

I love the challenge, Karin! Your elephants are endearingly cute~
I am sorry I am late to your prompt.

Hannah said...

Hello there, Karen! Thank you for this challenge and for your inspiring work! Your nest and promise of spring spoke to me...I hear Her too, from under piles and piles of white...I do! :)