Thursday, June 04, 2009

Streets, Details and Dancin', Spain

Flamenco Dancer

Where do we find words? And when do words make their way into poems?

Sometimes we find words in ordinary details on a street, in a museum, at a cave where dancers tap out flamenco. We note the cherry red festival dress, zebra butterfly, black heels, casual curve of a child's body on marble floors, even the cut of an ancient toilet now exposed to sky and sun.

Or we pluck word-phrases from the air, if we are quick and have remembered to bring along our sly net.

Here's a poem I found at the Granada Museum of Science. It was calling through these phrases, uttered by various people in our party as we walked through the Antarctica exhibit and some among us played a video game. It is dedicated to the couple who helped us with translation for the week and recalls also a conversation I had with the husband about apologies.

Here are the words I stole and stuffed into my poem:

'I think it takes 5 men and a whole day to build an igloo.'
'I hit a penguin!'
'It said I was a careless driver.'
'I was picking up meteorites along the way.'

(for Maria and Jarit)

I swear I was on my way
to see you, there in your
igloo it took five men and a
whole day to build. You were

cooking polar bear meat, melting
months-old snow to pour into
my tin cup. The day was white on
white, and I was swerving snow

dunes on a black and yellow
skidoo, picking up meteorites
along the way (where they
came from I can't say).

I had a pound of precious rice
in my pocket— a rare treat in an
Antarctica kitchen— and a thousand
kisses for you on my lips. But then

it happened. Careless driver that
I am, I hit a penguin and the screen
flashed red, 'Game over.' But I
swear I was on my way.

Festival Dress

Festival Dress and Shoes

Tapping to Flamenco

Chapel Gate

Street Flavor

Butterfly House, Museum de Sciencia Granada

At the Law School

Ancient Toilet

Poetry prompt: try collecting phrases from the conversations around you or from street signs, cereal boxes, book covers, wherever. Choose one or two to pop into a poem. Let me know when you post and leave your link in my comment box by Thursday June 11, for definite links and possible feature at High Calling Blogs.

Stacy’s series of poems
Jennifer’s Words Have Wings
Yvette’s One
nAncY’s Words Everywhere and poem from the wordpuddle
Marcus’s The Problem with Grace
Brian’s I am
Sunrise Sister’s, poem in the comment section
Liz’s Finished
Monica’s Past Mount Carmel Nosedive
Ann’s What’s the Dream?
A Simple Country Girl’s Perched There
Diane’s Hold Out Until the Honeymoon
LL's Apology
Sara's Stories
Claire's Giddy and Song of Stifle
Erica's RAP: Part Deux, Blue Sky, and Wordpool
Laura's A New Beginning
High Calling Blogs' Puddles, Fizz and Bubbles
Deb's Collect

Granada photos by L.L. Barkat.

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Blogger TUC said...

7:45 a.m. and already I suffer from poem-envy, uh, and Granada envy.

7:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i really liked going sight seeing with you on this post.

2:25 PM  
Blogger RissaRoo said...

I really liked that poem! It was different, refreshing, completely out of the ordinary and yet it seemed so plausible, too.

And your pictures...ahhhh, how I long to travel to those places! Thank you for the photo-vacation.

2:32 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

This pictures just arrest! Such color in the streets. Such beauty.

I collected some words today...

Just need to puzzle them together!

11:01 PM  
Blogger sarah said...

That was such an enjoyable read!

Here's what I did with some bits of conversation:

Thank you for the great prompt!

11:41 PM  
Anonymous Monica said...

This prompt is already making me a better listener...

1:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Today is a different Sabbath for me. I have been in the US for the week to present a conference paper. I am in my hotel room far from friends and family, strange but no less special. I find myself turning to poetry more and more to hear God speaking (although it will never replace His word). Your photos have his Hand etched deep into them. Your words are real and funny all at once... just like Him.

7:44 AM  
Blogger Marika said...

You should check out, which is all about doing this - 'found' poetry from everyday life.

8:08 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

I finally put my conversation pieces together. Still working on the word pool poem, though! Going to visit these other poets.


10:07 PM  
Anonymous Monica said...

OK, done! Here it is:

11:46 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

okay, I used song lyrics, another one started with signs and conversion, almost finished. I like this idea.

10:53 PM  

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