|"Sugar is not a vegetable." The divine Ms. Stein.|
Greetings Garden Dwellers--
Welcome to the first Out of Standard challenge in April. This is the fourth installment in our prompt a day parade of goodness, and I am here to keep your inspirado at maximum levels. Today, my toadies, I present a work which has never failed to bring out the poem in me.
Gertrude Stein's collection of poems, Tender Buttons, shook poetry to its core in 1914 and still rattles a few readers today. Simultaneously considered to be a masterpiece of verbal cubism and a spectacular failure, Stein s book in divided into three parts: Objects, Food, and Rooms.
In each section, Stein writes about the everyday mundane, but her use of language and rejection of gendered pronouns, renders even the most average subject unfamiliar and new born to the reader.
Read the excerpts from Tender Buttons below and write a short poem about an object, foods, or a room in the style of Stein. If you are one of the many readers who find Stein's work inaccessible or baffling or just not inspired by Tender Buttons???? then your challenge will be to write a poem without any gendered pronouns (she or he).
For those who haven't read Tender Buttons in full or would like to revisit it, the entire manuscript is available online, courtesy of the Gutenberg project and can be found here: Tender Buttons by Gertrude Stein.....I suggest reading it out loud while pacing with your morning tea.
Excerpts from Tender Buttons:
A LONG DRESS.
What is the current that makes machinery, that makes it crackle, what is the current that presents a long line and a necessary waist. What is this current.
What is the wind, what is it.
Where is the serene length, it is there and a dark place is not a dark place, only a white and red are black, only a yellow and green are blue, a pink is scarlet, a bow is every color. A line distinguishes it. A line just distinguishes it.
A blind agitation is manly and uttermost.
Custard is this. It has aches, aches when. Not to be. Not to be narrowly. This makes a whole little hill.
It is better than a little thing that has mellow real mellow. It is better than lakes whole lakes, it is better than seeding.
It is a need it is a need that a flower a state flower. It is a need that a state rubber. It is a need that a state rubber is sweet and sight and a swelled stretch. It is a need. It is a need that state rubber.
Why is there more craving than there is in a mountain. This does not seem strange to one, it does not seem strange to an echo and more surely is in there not being a habit. Why is there so much useless suffering. Why is there.
Any wet weather means an open window, what is attaching eating, anything that is violent and cooking and shows weather is the same in the end and why is there more use in something than in all that.
The cases are made and books, back books are used to secure tears and church. They are even used to exchange black slippers. They can not be mended with wax. They show no need of any such occasion.
KEEP IN MIND
Like every challenge, your poem must by newly written for this challenge and not one which you have previously written which conveniently fits the theme.
Go now, my toads, and bring me back something startling, shiny, and new.