Sunday, July 15, 2012

IGWRT's - Mini Challlenge for Sunday - "Fate"

Would you like to hear me read my poem?

Check this out on Chirbit


Fate waves her fickle hand, discerning not
between one desirous or deserving
of a destiny, glorious.  'Tis wrought,
Time is, with stories of man, unnerving
and bold, rallying against her servings
sprinkled upon them.  They dare greed, rage, lust,
pain; their best bold endeavors!  Observing,
in the end, Fate's fancy cannot be crushed.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 15, 2012

This is my attempt to follow a challenge offered up by "Imaginary Garden with Real  Toads - A Mini Challenge for Sunday - A Monk's Tale".  We had a choice to do a Huitain form poem (8 lines, 10 syllables in each, rhyme scheme ababbcbc) also known as the "Monk's Stanza".   If we chose to do a free verse poem, it was to be on the topic of "The Monk's Tale".

So... I choose to do a Huitain with a bit of a commentary of the "Monk's Tale".  I scanned the whole long tale.  It seems it entails many grim, tragic tales, all of which deal with fate now and again.  Fate that doesn't always seem just....

I could be off on my quick analysis, but it I am, the poem above I did battle with rhyme and syllabic counting... not something that comes easy to me!  :)

The photo is one that I took at night and added a bit of "snow" to.  As beautiful and hardy as Black Eyed Susans are... if snow descends upon them, they will perish.  (kind of like the hand of fate* ... ?)

*  I am NOT a big believe in fate (we have no choice)... I do believe in destiny - if it means we do play a part in our final outcome... if we choose to use our gifts, we all have a purpose to fulfill.  The question is, will we choose the right path?  

Friday, July 13, 2012

IGWRT's-Mary's Mixed Bag & Poetry Jam "I Live Within"

I love to daydream in a flower garden.  Where do you like to daydream?
Would you like to hear this poem read to you by my son?

Check this out on Chirbit
I Live Within

I live within a rev'rie, dance
to Mozart's symphonies and chance
to spread my wings and fly afar
upon imagination's star.

Of truth and knowledge, fine romance
until with jealousy, askance
does dogma take a jealous stance
and cleave and claw a bright red scar!
I live within.

Embrace I must the world and prance
and place a dream's hypnotic trance
upon the minds of those who are
so limited by judgement's glare.
To miracles!  To truth's advance!
I live within.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 13, 2012

This rondeau poem (click on following link for specific rhyming pattern) is for Imaginary Garden with Real Toad's "Mary's Mixed Bag" AND Poetry Jam: Daydreaming.

My son pointed out a "fix".  Reverie did not work with the "count" for a rondeau, so I borrowed from Shakespeare (can't go wrong there, right? :)  (Reverie: daydream)

Believe it or not, Albert  Einstein was a daydreamer and considered that and perseverance his greatest assets.  (click for his QUOTES on daydreaming and similar things)  My poem is what I think he would like us all to do... embrace not just what WE know, but embrace the world so our knowledge, our truth, can expand!

A quote from him I love is:  "If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales.  If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales."  I used the word "fancy" because it fit the rhythm of my structured poem.

What kind of daydream is kitty having in this "secondhand" bookstop?  

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Poetic Asides and Friday Flash 55 "This is What War Looks Like"

Would you like to hear me read this poem?

Check this out on Chirbit

This is What War Looks Like

Noble cannons alight
upon historic hills,
peek over manicured ruins,
rail fences, swaying fields,
resplendently wrapped in honor.
Sing a valiant warrior's song,
one of glory well worth the loss
of an ideal vanquished.

This is what war looks like
when what lies beneath
gleaming waves of grain
and shining rows of corn

is forgotten.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 12, 2012

A classic photo of Confederate Dead in Front of Dunker Church
HERE is more on the bloodiest day in American History - Antietam, MD.

A historic photo of "The Sunken Road" aka "The Bloody Lane"
This is for Poetic Asides #183:  Write a Poem with the title "This is What ______ Looks Like"
and Friday Flash 55, a story in 55 words, no more no less.

Also linking this up with Imaginary Garden with Real Toad's "Open Link Monday".

My poem is not to treat lightly the notion that slavery was/is wrong and evil.  It is simply a commentary on how we often paint war - before and after.  Did you know that General Robert E. Lee did not own slaves, did not believe in slavery - yet he lead the South in the Civil War.  Prior towards the Civil War he was strongly attached to the Union and was no sympathizer to slave holders.  I believe his "battle" was what he believed was written in the Constituion and fought for Virginia's right as a state to succeed from the Union. 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Jones Point Light House, Alexandria, VA - A Poem

The newly renovated Jones Point Lighthouse

The skyline of Alexandria and the beginning of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge (lighthouse far right)

Woodrow Wilson bridge at dusk.

Would you like to listen to me read my poem?

Jones Point Light House

Between a cleavage of trees,
a shrinking violet nestles discreetly,
as a bevy of beauties parade
along nearby shore

where, like an over-eager lover,
the setting Sun lingers,
enjoys Alexandria's charm,
elegance, and grandeur.

Risking her displeasure,
Sun sneaks a glance
toward a sparkling necklace
 seductively winking,

missing altogether
the simple lines
and diminutive stature
of the wallflower below.

the Mighty Potomac
dips and sways before
his old, faithful maiden,

grateful for her dimmed
but forever watchful eyes
upon him once again.

An instant's mesmerization
does not a faithful heart make,
and like a lover, jilted 
once too often by pomp
and circumstance,

glories that his first love
is smiling upon him
once again.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 10, 2012

My daughter and I took a riverboat cruise down the Potomac River while visiting Washington D.C.  I asked the crew what the tiny white building was and they said with all the numerous trips this way had never even noticed it tucked away in the trees.  I used my iPhone and placed it on the Google maps and was fascinated with it.  Jones Point Lighthouse was my search result and it was originally built in 1855, discontinued in 1926 and finally, relit and preserved in 1995.  

I hope to go back someday to D.C. as three days is not enough time to see all there is in this lovely city.  The shrinking violet, Jones Point Lighthouse, and the grand dame, Alexandria, are on my "To See" list.

This is linked with dVerse - Open Link Night #52 .  It is THE place to be for poets on Tuesday evenings!

Monday, July 9, 2012

"Becoming" by William Bednar


We are made for the becoming of things,
To catch the current underneath our wings,
While riding on the lazy winds we find,
To let the gusts and gyres, toward heaven, wind.
Our eyes were crafted so to watch the skies,
Our ears to hear the stories of the wise,
Our lips were granted so to kiss the check
Of they that take the time to hear us speak,
Our arms to carry children in their sleep,
Our hands to trace the hearts of those that weep,
Our hearts to swim amidst a drunken dance,
Our feet to walk a road that's paved with chance,
Our bodies shaped to love the easy Sun,
And drink the Moon's sweet rays, and be undone.

by William Bednar

I hope you enjoyed the beauty of my son's words.  He goes off for a walk, and comes back with this...  I wish my walks were as productive :) 

I've added my photography, but so many images could have been used here... I don't feel I've done his words justice.  

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Magpie Tales # IGWRT's A Word with Laurie & Sunday Challenge

Chilmark Hay, 1951 by Thomas Hart Benton
The Land

As perspiration trickles downward
and heat waves its heavy hand,
my eyes seek sustenance
from her sculpted form.

I lick salt from thirsty lips,
wonder if she sweats at all.
My eyes drink her in
as she entices beneath the sycamore.

I accept her offer,
lower myself upon her broad chest,
and sigh the sigh
of a man well loved.

Her cool arms promise
she will never lie,
she will never leave
and I rest my head, and believe.

I rouse, raindrops glisten upon us,
farm house chimes tickle the cool breeze.
Refreshed, I leave her slumber,
her demarcation clearly marked.

I belong to her.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 8, 2012

Would you like to hear me read my poem?

Check this out on Chirbit

Photo courtesy of Gemma Wiseman

This is a triple!  Meaning, I have combined three challenges.

Magpie Tales #125 - the top photo prompt
Imaginary Garden with Real Toads Sunday Challenge featuring Gemma Wiseman
Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - A Word with Laurie - Demarcation - the act of creating a boundary around a place or thing.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

dVerse - Poetics "A Weary Passenger"

A Weary Passenger

The moment he walks through the door, I know

arousal isn't always sexual,
more often it partners with animosity;

a cumulus cloud gathering force
with every perceived injustice.

Uninhibited alcohol fuels this jet,
instability hovers, careens into
violence, cumulonimbus like.

I dare not look toward his thunder,
knowing it will dissipate quickly,
beg forgiveness of me,
a weary passenger.

I try and soar above, ride out
another night, another flight.
Hope my eyes will witness
morning's slivered moon,
gentle light, proof I survived.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 7, 2012

Check this out on Chirbit

This is for dVerse Poetics" Whatever the Weather - hosted by Stu Mcpherson.  Many choices were given for us to use "weather" and I chose one that uses it metaphorically.  I fear my attempt is a bit weak, but I know that if you follow the link, you will find many fine pieces of poetry that do this challenge justice!

I am experimenting with recording my poetry.  In the middle of this, you can hear my children trying to be quiet.  I glanced over after saying the word "sexual" and almost lost it as my 10 year old daughter mouthed "yuck". ha ha

AND!!! Most importantly, I must put a disclaimer here for my sweet husband's sake :)  This is totally in response to the challenge and photo... not any personal experience on my part.

Friday, July 6, 2012

IGWRT's Out of Standard with Izy "Tis Art"

'Tis Art

I tell myself
"Tis a process of art

transferring a moment
from an image captured";

an image desirous of remaining
free of specific interpretation.

Illusive, like watercolor,
images saturate fragile paper

fighting for a breath of originality
as I over-think sentimentality.

Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 6, 2012

Interested in hearing me read this poem?

Check this out on Chirbit

This is for Imaginary Garden With Real Toads:  Out of Standard with Izy - Parody!  The challenge is to write a poem which parodies my own style, structure or tone.  This was not easy and I erase many, many attempts.  Izzy... I am sorry I cursed your name not a few times last evening and this morning.  This attempt is well, my attempt.  :)

I also thought it would be fun to snag a few of my daughters iPhone photographs.  As I tend to still think about composition and light, etc., they just snap away and capture pure moments ... Ah, the impatience of youth pays off!  :)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Poetry Jam - "Booth's Lament"

John Wilkes Booth's Lament

Our cause being lost,

I have given up all
that makes life sweet and holy.

Repent?  I may before God,
but not man.

With the curse of Cain
I must fight the course,

and why?

God simply made me
the instrument of his punishment!

May He let me die bravely;
'tis all that's left me.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 5, 2012 (selected words from last diary entry)

Interested in hearing me read this poem?

Check this out on Chirbit

This if for Poetry Jam - this week's them Forgiveness (or lack thereof!) 

and Friday Flash 55 (next week July 12).  Below is the appointment book John Wilkes Booth carried on his body and  wrote in after the April 14 assassination.  HERE is the entire entry.  Being an actor, he loved words, drama, and the limelight, but I took the liberty to shorten it for him in 55 words :)

The first place I visited in Washington D.C. was Ford's Theatre.  I sat in the seats and looked up into the balcony where Booth shot President Lincoln and then he jumped to the stage shouting in Latin "Sic simper Tyrannis" (Thus always to tyrants).  

A walked the winding stairs upon which Booth tread, derringer in his pocket, vengeance in his heart.  Before Gettysburg, Booth's original plan was to kidnap Lincoln and transport him to the South.  If he had been successful, history would have rewritten him a hero as the "winner" writes the pages of history.  

The museum under the theatre is amazing.  I spent two hours slowly absorbing history and viewing the actual pieces that carried out this tragic deed.  Booth's actions killed the very man who would have shown compassion and forgiveness to the South... instead, healing took a very, very long time.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Abraham Lincoln, the Poet and a poem by me "The Monument"

My daughter and I recently took a trip to Washington D.C.   The first place I visited was Ford's Theatre, which I will share in my next post.  This is, of course, the statue at the Lincoln Memorial.  The view overlooking the reflecting water and the Washington Monument (which Lincoln gazes at eternally) was a bit disappointing as the water was drained for repairs.

Standing beneath this imposing stature and looking up is awe inspiring, although something tells me Lincoln would not like it as he was a humble spirit.  But beneath this gaze, I felt hope, and I'm glad he has been honored in this way.

The Monument

Upon gleaming stone
rests a finger,
tapping eternally
and a fist
forever contemplating.

Eyes gaze steadily,
further wisdom

while a foot
seemingly eager
to lead...

A life force
united with our Maker,
relying solely
on yesterday's
good deeds.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 4, 2012

Would you like to hear me read this poem?

Check this out on Chirbit

I linked the above poem up with "dVerse Poet's Pub - Open Link Night".  Please skip on over if you want to view some FINE poetry.  Also posted this over at "Poetic Asides" - Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 182

And did you know he was a poet?  Below is an excerpt from the Library of Congress site on Lincoln:

Lincoln became interested in poetry around the age of twelve, and remained an avid reader of poetry throughout his life. His earliest exposure to poetry likely came through Thomas Dilworth's literacy textbook A New Guide to the English Tongue, which included several short poems. When his widowed father Thomas married Sarah Bush Johnston in 1819, she brought to the household a small library that included William Scott'sLessons in Elocution, a gathering of poetry and prose for youth. It was from Scott's anthology, which Lincoln began reading seriously around 1825, that he first came into contact with many poems and poets that remained lifelong favorites, including Shakespeare, who ranked supreme in Lincoln's literary pantheon. In an 1863 letter to comedic actor James Hackett, who had recently published the book Notes and Comments upon Certain Plays and Actors of Shakespeare, with Criticisms and Correspondence, Lincoln outlined his familiarity with Shakespeare's works:
Some of Shakespeare's plays I have never read; while others I have gone over perhaps as frequently as any unprofessional reader. Among the latter are Lear, Richard Third, Henry Eighth, Hamlet and especially Macbeth. I think nothing equals Macbeth. It is wonderful. Unlike you gentlemen of the profession, I think the soliloquy in Hamlet commencing "Oh my offense is rank" surpasses that commencing, "To be or not to be."
Other poets whose work Lincoln enjoyed included Lord Byron, Thomas Gray, Thomas Hood, Oliver Wendell Holmes, John Greenleaf Whittier, Fitz-Greene Halleck, and, second only to Shakespeare, Robert Burns. [234] Lincoln's love of Burns's poetry was so widely known during his presidency that he received many invitations to annual celebrations of the Scotsman's birthday. When Alexander Williamson, the secretary of the Washington Burns club, wrote Lincoln asking him to recognize the "the genius of Scotland's bard," Lincoln replied: "I cannot frame a toast to Burns. I can say nothing worthy of his generous heart and transcendent genius. Thinking of what he has said, I cannot say anything worth saying.”

Not only did Lincoln read poetry, but he memorized large swaths which he frequently recited to friends and inserted into conversation. His favorite poem, which he recited so often that people suspected Lincoln was the author, was William Knox's "Mortality," or, "Oh, Why should the Spirit of Mortal be Proud?" So great was Lincoln's affection for the poem that he once wrote, "I would give all I am worth, and go in debt, to be able to write so fine a piece as I think that is." Other favorite poems Lincoln committed to memory were Oliver Wendell Holmes’ "The Last Leaf" and Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven." Both are examples of the gloomy, melancholic poetry of which Lincoln was so fond and at which he would try his own hand.

Lincoln as Poetry Writer

In addition to his poetic prose, exemplified by the Gettysburg Address, Lincoln was the author of several capable poems. The Library of Congress' Presidents as Poets Web site includes the text of these poems and historical information about their composition.

I have read many books on this great man.  I think "Team of Rivals" I will be reading off and on for the  next year as it is rather... well, long.  But one book I am having a bit of fun with is "Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Slayer" (I'm a bit embarrassed to admit this... :)

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

IGWRT's Sunday Challenge: Koan Poetry


With excitement and youthful energy she ponders her future;
bars of iron, block her way forward, protecting.
Men of sound mind and good heart have made mistakes,
a lifelong struggle, hers, to set the path straight.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 2, 2012

* * * * *
Would you like to hear me read this?

Check this out on Chirbit

This is for IGWRT's Sunday mini challenge:  Koan poetry.  HERE is a detailed account of this ancient Chinese poetry.  I certainly hope this didn't have a certain rhythm, word count, or rhyme as I don't have any... (Kerry... let me know :)

The iPhone photos are of my daughter on our recent trip to Washington DC which I have yet to post about.   I did take photos with my nice Canon, but I found that when sight seeing, it is often hard to make those you are with wait for the perfect shot :)  The monument above is the Jefferson Memorial.  We paddle boated here at the end of the day (last photo!)

I am a few challenges behind and have rushed my poetry here.  I hope I grasped the essence of it... I find it an exciting form as I like short poetry that is packed with insight and feeling.  I am sure I will revisit this in the near future.

and my blue toe which obviously needed a touch up!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Magpie Tales #124 "Purging" & IGWRT's Kerry's Wednesday Challenge & Poetry Jam

Ophelia by Odilon Redon


I wish
for a lone teardrop;

a final vision, reflected
of our summertide heat.

Between my fingertips
I'll crush

spine tingling endearments
and heaven's hands,

toss your abandonment
towards darkened sky.

Blow, blow,
though winter wind,

freeze these eyes,
purify this heart,

for all seasons
must come to an end.

by Margaret Bednar, Art Happens 365, July 1, 2012

Would you like to hear me read this poem?

Check this out on Chirbit

This is for The Mag #124 the challenge is to write a poem to the photo provided above.

Also linked with Poetry Jam -Mood Swings.

I also linked this to Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Kerry's Wednesday Challenge (Very) Old School.  The challenge to find a phrase or quote from Shakespeare and write a poem.  The phrase I used is:  Blow, blow, though winter wind.