amongst books

amongst books

Monday, April 11, 2016

Impromptu 11: Today I am a serpent

Matt Trease’s prompt had us acquiring our astrological charts and using the language of the signs and the degrees of the location of our signs within the planets (Sabian symbols) to make a poem. This had me all at sea. I won’t whine about my lack of understanding or appreciation for astrology, I will just say that I dove in, using both the astrological information from my natal chart and the technique of other similar concepts, such as the I Ching.

From the relevant Sabian symbols in Elsie Wheeler’s and Elias Lonsdale’s guides for my sign and the particular degrees from my natal chart, I categorized as much of the text as I had index cards for into PERSONS, CREATURES, OBJECT/CONCEPT, ACTION, QUALIFIER. I was able to make it through all the signs. I plucked from each pile, sometimes more than once per sign. I sometimes rejected dull words in favour of another.

 The poet René Char had a sign over his desk which read, “Cheat at this game.” So I did that a little. But I liked this challenge. I was thinking about chance operations and Jackson Mac Low’s light poems as I created the work.  This was difficult but in the end, it feels rewarding. Thanks, Matt for this prompt.


I am a magician
compelled to take on
real figures, springboarding
into the pulse of voyages to
bring to life previous


Today I am my self
I recognize control
to be uplifting, an
imperative of place
Its sheer sea counts
as nature


Today I am
a wizard sweating
incorrigibly in the
reckoning of false
rituals I count
unnoticed treasures
and semblances
I stir havoc


Today I am a soul
I swim into
chemistries which
frame my human


Today I am a body
revealing worth like
a strip of distortions
along a voyage Help
me to swim into time
I am thrust into sharp


Today I am an undersoul
needing no better
dynamics than most
why sense my live
experience to embrace
experience why pass
through a still vial
of soul-memory


Today I am a youngster
wreaking time with my
reality of keen pressures
without faculties to
remain strong Yes,
I demand better


Today I am a witch
I blend in even though
I blindly thrash against
old forces that take up
against universal figures
of power


Today I am a man
I teach myself to
open I need to handle
intuitive basics I cycle
through authenticity
like a bird in times
of downward karma


Today I am a woman
who wears herself
out with wounds,
lessons from dispassionate
change, who denies doorways
in search of desire


Today I am a serpent
I spin away from
strategic magic
away from the chutes
of blurred existence
which try to make
facts out of glass


Today I am both
swan and hawk I act
collectively with
as I take loops of
faith and cook up
frenzies to touch
the source, a gift
of accuracy that
transforms action
into humanity

Play along!

For those of you who are just joining us, 
The Found Poetry Review is celebrating National Poetry Month by offering daily experimental writing prompts from writers. I will be responding to them at poetic whim.


Misky said...

Pluto is a very strong stanza. Gorgeous writing.

Amanda Earl said...

thanks, Marilyn & thanks for continuing to read the daily poems.

Amanda Earl said...

i've just now clued in that you're Misky. slow! i hope to read more of your poems too :)