And the Next

The evening after I’d talked to Sharon Olds about getting together to write poetry, there was a meeting of my poetry group, the Yogurt Poets, or YoPos.  Only Nancy and I were there and so had plenty of time to chat.  I told her about the poetry gathering I was planning and asked if she could join us, as Sharon had invited me to invite someone.  Nancy couldn’t make it, but I told her I’d let her know about it.

A week ago, I sent her the link to the Poetry Play post and she used the list of words to generate her own poem, before reading my poem.

Done Waiting

when released
like a pumpjack
my head rocks
into place
on the back
of my neck
and my sun visor
naturally lifted
no longer blocks
my view
of one blueberry
a gibbous orb
who’s own
tenuous existence
provokes a closer
as I step from dry
cobble to cobble
through marshy land
at the low end
of this oblong field
and pick and eat
am satisfied.
— Nancy Stewart

“Isn’t it remarkable how different our use of the word-list is?” she wrote, after reading my poem, after writing hers.  Yes, indeed.

PS The blog formatting isn’t taking the indentation of every other line that Nancy did in her poem.  Sorry — it really adds something to the poem, so you’ll just have to imagine it.


About Grace Mattern

Grace Mattern is a poet, writer, mother, grandmother, partner, friend, family member, gardener, triathlete, hiker and for 30 years was the Executive Director of the NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. She resigned her position at the Coalition on June 15, 2011 in order to concentrate on her writing, while continuing to engage in the movement to end violence against women as a consultant and advisor. Her chapbook Fever of Unknown Origin was published in 2001 and her full-length poetry book The Truth About Death was published in 2012.
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2 Responses to And the Next

  1. Nancy Stewart says:

    I’m very excited about this method of poem-generation, Grace, especially how you all contributed to the list. Very clever and wouldn’t I have had fun, Grace! I’ve sent the list and instructions on to Rick and Sara, so we’ll see what they come up with. I really can’t get over how different in tone, subject, mood, meter, you name it, our poems are, and all from the same group of random words.

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