Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Personal Challenge ~ Susie

Hello to everyone in the garden, this is Susie. Helen passed the baton of a personal challenge to me and she didn't make it an easy one. She provided some beautiful photos from a hike she and her daughter made to the Blue Pool on the McKenzie River Trail in Oregon as inspiration, but she also challenged me to write it to Hannah's Boomerang Metaphors Poetry form.

Boomerang Metaphors: 
* Create three, “This poem is a ____,” statements.
* Support each statement in separate stanzas, (one can choose the length of the supporting stanzas and whether or not to rhyme or employ free verse).
* Restate the statement that’s being supported in the last line of these supporting stanzas, (as mini boomerang metaphor refrains).
* Then name the list of three, “This poem is a _____,” statements again as a boomerang metaphors refrain.
NoteOne may choose to state the closing refrain slightly morphed but mostly the same. As it seems, words that go out into the world do tend to come back touched – slightly transformed.
* The title encapsulates the three listed elements, “This Poem is a ____, ____ and a _____”

Having just struggled with Hannah's form I wasn't sure I could do it justice on my second attempt. Since the whole point is to challenge myself to go beyond my normal, I took a deep breath and put on my thinking cap and began to write.

Photo: Helen Dehner

This Poem Is A Blue Pool

This poem is a pool
This poem is vulnerable.
This poem is trust.

This poem is clear water
painted with sky,
rocks, and pine. It is as
deep as yesterday and
as wide as first sight.
This poem is a pool.

This poem is toes on
the edge gripping stones,
flirting with gravity,
wishing for wings.
This poem is vulnerable.

This poem is wisdom
that knows shifting earth
can be a leap into disaster.
It is a voice that brings
the rebel to the security
of solid ground.
This poem is trust.

This poem is a deep blue pool.
This poem is tempting fate.
This poem is wisdom inducing trust.

©Susie Clevenger 2014

When researching the Blue Pool I came across the tragic story of University Of Oregon tennis star, Alex Rovello, who died from a fall into the pool. (You can read about it here.) This along with Helen's photo helped me find the direction I wanted to go with my poem. 

Thank you so much Helen for the challenge. I have been struggling of late with my poetry. I needed a nudge to get it going again.


Unknown said...

You did a great job. The deep blue pool sounds peaceful and relaxing to me!

Grace said...

This is a beautiful response Susie ~ I specially like the part of This poem is vulnerable ~ The deep blue pool can tempt fate but it also brings a security to solid ground ~

The back story is tragic ~

Anonymous said...

You did Hannah's form proud. Your poem is as beautiful as the picture that prompted it. I esp love this: "This poem is toes on
the edge gripping stones,
flirting with gravity,
wishing for wings.
This poem is vulnerable."

annell4 said...

Yes, your poem was lovely…for some reason I found this form a bit difficult? Thanks for the prompt.

Kerry O'Connor said...

The poem and the story behind the poem are both remarkable. Sometimes we must go beyond our comfort zones, and trust that things will be all right in the end, but that is not always the case. Your poem has indeed become the vehicle of the tale.

Kathryn Dyche said...

This was definitely inspired . . . I really struggle with the boomerang form you did fantastic.

Unknown said...

I love love the second stanza susie... "flirting with gravity wishing for wings" how wishful how poetic how extremely fantastic is That! Amazing!!!

hedgewitch said...

Just an amazing poem Susie. I found this form completely impossible even once, so many kudos for making your second so eloquent. You have really illustrated the 'boomerang aspect by the way you have circled so beautifully beginning and end.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Oh Susie, this is a fantastic write! The photo is beautiful, the backstory so sad and your poem absolutely perfect. LOVED this!!!! I especially love the toes on the edge stanza.

humbird said...

I love, how the stanza with toes grew into fate...amazing! Inspiring too :)x

Helen said...

If you had not researched the Blue Pool I may have never known of this young man's death last year. Thinking back on the hike through an enchanting woodland and up,up,up to that spot where we stood high on the cliff ~ I cannot imagine the horror of that day.
A champion tennis player at the University of Oregon, Center Court has been named the Alex Rovello in his honor.
There are not enough accolades to describe my reaction to your poem.
Thank you so much for accepting my challenge, Susie!

Susie Clevenger said...

@Sally, thank you

@Grace, thank you so much

@georgeplaceblog Thanks..that is my favorite part also.

@annell, Thanks. I have struggled with the form a bit, but I so appreciate how it flows. Each writing I am a little more comfortable with it. Hannah, is certainly talented creator.

@Kerry, thank you. The talent here in the garden with members and visitors has caused me to step out of my comfort zone many times. I am grateful to be pushed off my comfortable stool.

@Kathryn, Thank you so much

@Arushi, Thanks

@hedgewitch, Thank you. Once I relaxed into the form, it wasn't as difficult. Each person who writes with the form brings such unique poetry. I so understand not being able to do it. Rhyme is my downfall...It is almost impossible for me to do.

@Sherry Thank you!

@humbird...Thanks so much

@Helen, Thank you again for challenging me. Perhaps those who learn of Alex's story will take a moment to pay their respects when they make the climb to the Blue Pool.

Hannah said...

I love how you brought Helen's image to life with a new layer...you brought the story and form together with such skill and creative flair, Susie!!

Thank you both for this treat today!!

Susie Clevenger said...

@Hannah, thank you. I so appreciate the form you created. It pushed me to think in a new way.

Jim said...

I'm glad you took the challenge, Susie. I liked this form and had been wondering if I would try it again. You wrapped it up so nicely I won't have to. :)

What I like is the way that in each of your verses you beautifully amplify one of the lines at the beginning before returning to the line it represented. Then a the end, the three lines summarized the middle verses and returned modified to the first.

Hannah said...

Wow, Susie!! What an inspiring comment for me to read about my form...I feel very happy that I could be a poetic catalyst for your beautiful heart-work in words, Susie!! Thank you for telling me. ♥

Marian said...

this poem is fantastic, Susie. truly, i love it.
Hannah's form is hard, i think, with the repetition--hard to write without reducing to trite, in my opinion, anyway. your poem stays high above, floating above the pool, and is really satisfying.

Susie Clevenger said...

@Jim, thank you so much. It was a little difficult to get it to flow the way I wanted, but I am so happy it spoke to you in the manner I hoped it would.

@Hannah, you are so welcome!

@Marian, Thank you so much!!

Anonymous said...

Helen, good challenge!

Susie, a marvelous pen on a sad story ~