Hello, everyone. Is it only Tuesday? Let’s see what we can do to entertain ourselves. I decided, based on the way you all fall with delighted cries on any image I post, that I will post images the last Tuesday of each month. Based on the exercise I set with the images [if I set one], you may hunt out your own image and post it on your site with the resulting poem. While it’s fun to see what everyone does with the same prompt, if an image doesn’t work for you, then it’s not much good.
We are continuing with place, and that is one reason you may wish to choose your own, if what I have does not have a strong sense of place for you. Remember that the sense of place can be positive, or negative. or both.
Choose an image and ask yourself a series of questions. Is the sense of place physical? Emotional? A balance, or imbalance of both? What establishes the mood of the place? What draws you? Be specific.
Go over your chosen image, starting with the bottom left corner and moving over it, jotting notes, as you go. Note everything you see. You never know, until you reread what you have seen, what might prove useful, or might provide your focus. No detail is too small. You might look at an image as it is and jot notes, then zoom in once, jot more notes, and, if you can, zoom in a final time and jot more notes. Or, jot everything you think you have noticed. Go away for a bit and come back and go over it again.
Place is that important. Writer Peter Huggins says:
“In painting, chiaroscuro, the use of light and dark, provides definition, contrast, the heightening or lessening of emotion; in addition, I would argue, it allows viewers a way into the painting. In poetry, place serves a similar function: readers can enter the particular world of the poem; however, if readers languish in the general world of no place, then nothing will happen for them, neither the excitement and explosion of language nor the complex connection of realized experience.
“…I would suggest that these poems arise from these places and are rooted in these places just as day lilies or tulip poplars are rooted in the places from which they spring. I would even go so far as to suggest that these poems would not exist (or would exist in a radically different and probably diminished way) apart from their respective places. Place provides form, shape, and being to these poems…”
Write a poem that conveys a sense of the place in the image you have chosen; or about the connection with the speaker describing it; or about the place in the abstract, so that it stands for something else; or using the sense of place to provide an anchor for story.
I see people rubbing their hands with glee. Go to it. I shall see you Thursday, possibly for an interview with poet, James Brush; if not, then announcements, and we will have James next Thursday. Friday sees another roundup of prompts, and next Tuesday, well, place, of course.