Contemporary Sonnet #010101010101

Contemporary Sonnet #010101010101

Contemporary Sonnet #010101010101

I morfed while speaking ASL (or was that a/s/l?)
Across the keys my fingers moved, in ALL CAPS DID I YELL
Hermaphroditic princess of Marcel Duchamp’s white throne
Nonplussed by nonsense on the screen, the drivel of a drone.
He asked me “Do u wanna chat?” l asked him, “Can you spell?
He asked “Whut R u Waring?” and I muttered, “Go to Hell.”
I judge performance with a pen, its ink as red as blood;
If you say “Insert A in B,’ your name, it will be mud.”
He vowed to be my lackey; and I, his Mistress (“Dork!”)
Dispatched him to a chat room with a jeweled tuna fork
And there did bade him to recite, in front of all and sundry,
A sonnet from atop his head – no limp iambic blund’ring!
He couldn’t get it up to rhyme (his fountain pen, I mean!)
Next thing he did was disconnect, and ne’er again was seen.


Written in 2007, based on an online chat circa 1990 but apparently one of those “evergreen” things that’s relatable, even today. Reposted in answer to

Some things never change.

Asibikaashi #WednesdayVerses

Asibikaashi #WednesdayVerses

Strong threads you weave;
A web of them,
At first, to swaddle and protect –
Softly subtle, safe cocoon,
Where only pleasant dreams reside.

Bright sunlight flickers,
warm, upon the glass, and I
Can’t move. Can’t breathe.
Your sticky net catches everything
Grows tighter as I struggle,
Wiggling free.
Where once I fed on you,
You feed on me.

Night terror, you,
Your breath tickling my cheek.
Does it still breathe? I hardly dare.
Half-dreaming, I reach out,
Slap you. Slap me.

So long ago, a truce – you
Retreated to the shadows,
Present, still.
Those graying wisps
Hang tattered, torn, defeated.
I learned to deal with nightmares
On my own.

But there! Just now,
Upon the dew-kissed window-pane,
I see you! Sunning yourself.
Smiling at the rounded belly
Beneath my hand, as we
In our own ways, our own time –
Begin to weave.


Happy New Year. And welcome to #WednesdayVerses. Vinay and Reema are offering a prompt each Wednesday to inspire you to write a poem. If it does, write it as a post on your blog, then come link up with them. If it doesn’t, then browse the links to read what others have written, and share the posts with your poetry-loving friends. The linky is open from Wednesday till the following Tuesday night! Please add your post to the link only if it is a post written for #WednesdayVerses. All are welcome and invited to participate.

The prompt for this week is the picture of a lovely dream-catcher, which finds its origins in Ojibwe legends. A link to the image is here.


Author’s note: I wanted to learn more about the real history of the Native American dreamcatcher – not just the commercialized motif so popular since the 1990s or so and more likely made in China, now, than by Native American hands. I hope that my own reading and interpretation of the story does it justice. What I saw, in reading the legends, was mothers and sisters and grandmothers standing in as proxies for the protective Spider Woman, Asibikaashi, whose web hangs over children’s cradles and beds and “catches” all the nightmares and only lets good thoughts and dreams come through the center. But children grow up; part of becoming an adult is struggling against the protection and safety of their elders’ “webs” and learning to take care of themselves, so that they can one day take care of others. As a mother, myself, I know that it’s only after we’ve broken free of the “constraints” of what we see as “overprotectiveness” that we’re ready to accept help from the old “spider women” whose webs once chafed and annoyed us.

Shadowbird

Shadowbird

And so it begins again…

Shadowbird

Rise, dark Phoenix, touch the sky
Let those who would lay claim
To each prized and precious feather
Try to soar on stolen wings

Their unearned flight as fleeting
As the wind that lifts, embraces you–
Casting them from their pretentious heights.

Even now, you would turn back
Risking gilded, earthbound cage
Borne down by conscience, knowing
It was you alone that gave them faith.

What silly creatures mortals are
To make your feathers into myths
Obliging you to save them from their folly.

Cursed, because you can, their need
A jesse, a lure–their loss
They never dared reach out and touch
The rapid-beating heart within.

A rush of wings, an anguished mortal cry
Abandoned by the gods of their creation
Maybe now they’ll learn to stand…

Only then can they follow you in flight.

 

Copyright 1990-2019 Holly Jahangiri.
Previously published in Walking the Earth: Life’s Perspectives in Poetry.

 

Wrath

It was a dark and stormy night,
When Wrath, the bird of prey, took flight.
Above the wind I heard her cry –
The hunter cast a falcon’s eye
Upon the filthy creatures’ lair
Without regard to foul or fair.
Three eggs – and now, an empty nest;
Three rats – their hunger sated, blessed.
When Wrath, the bird of prey, took flight,
Rapacious in her appetite,
It was a dark and stormy night.

 

Copyright 2001-2019 Holly Jahangiri

A Cheesy Sonnet

A Cheesy Sonnet

Cheese Bored

It all began with a tweet. A gauntlet thrown my direction, picked up in a moment of weakness: boredom. Who can resist the lure of a challenge when they’re bored?

 

I once wrote a sonnet about roadkill. I’m down with an ode to cheese. When I was a kid, my parents owned a store in Daytona Beach: The Cheese Shoppe. My hastily penned poem might stink like yesterday’s Limburger smeared on an old fashioned radiator, but how could I resist it? It’ll pair nicely with that other sonnet.

Feel Free to Dis a Brie, But I Think It’s Gouda’nuff!

It began as a sonnet on cheddar
But a Limburger Limerick is better
And there’s nothing to lose
When singing the bleus –
If a lady would sing, you should let her.

Okay, that’s not “beautiful.” Let’s try this again, with a purely autobiographical sonnet.

Cheese Wheel of Life

“I’ve a craving,” I said, “Grilled Havarti on rye,
With horseradish–a copious slather!”
“But we’ve just finished dinner,” he said, with a sigh. 
“Chocolate cake!” he said. “Wouldn’t you rather–?”

“Well, I might, but we wouldn’t,” I said, with a wink, 
Looking down at my over-large belly.
And that’s when I brought proud Papa to the brink:
“Blue cheese! Habanero! And jelly!”

“Gorgonzola?” he asked. “Chocolate and chips?”
I nodded and grinned my unbridled delight.
“With mangoes and brie? From your ears to my lips!”
We danced through the groceries all night.

Now we are three, and oh, sweet Baby Bel–
What pairs well with strained carrots and white zinfandel?

 

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