The Role of a Poet


Thinking of a few beloved poets: Emily Dickinson, Gwendolyn Brooks, Yeats, Poe, Christina Rossetti I continue to focus on the Role of the Poet and how I play that role.

Melba Christie at Poemattic

I often ask myself what is the role or job of the poet? Each time the response depends on what is happening in the world and in my personal life. I ask other poets the same question. Sometimes I wish I could ask my favorite poets, especially those who became well-known after they passed. I could imagine their reaction when they learn in their after life that people finally get and appreciate the poems they wrote.

As I pondered the question I went back to my collection of poetry books and looked for some insights.  Inspired by poet’s biographies and other readings, I wrote a poem that hopefully answers the question. I mean if you have ever asked yourself what is the role of the poet.

The Role of the Poet

I believe the world needs a poet more today

It needed one yesterday as well

because a poet is…

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The Role of a Poet


I often ask myself what is the role or job of the poet? Each time the response depends on what is happening in the world and in my personal life. I ask other poets the same question. Sometimes I wish I could ask my favorite poets, especially those who became well-known after they passed. I could imagine their reaction when they learn in their after life that people finally get and appreciate the poems they wrote.

As I pondered the question I went back to my collection of poetry books and looked for some insights.  Inspired by poet’s biographies and other readings, I wrote a poem that hopefully answers the question. I mean if you have ever asked yourself what is the role of the poet.

 

The Role of the Poet

I believe the world needs a poet more today

It needed one yesterday as well

because a poet is one to tells

truths we may not want to hear

a poet brings to light what is most dear

and helps us to face fear

 

A poet brings you back into your own life

and teaches you how to breathe in and out

in stillness and in meditation

while you listen carefully to your breath and heart beat

and to the divine explanation of why we are all here.

 

A poet is a little god

who soothes your soul

and lets you peek into life’s crystal ball

to see yourself for the very first time

 

A poet sings the songs that make the world go round

and says what matters in free verse or rhyme

a poet knows how to expertly use every utterance and sound

in alliteration or onomatopoeia or assonance

and when it comes to choosing

the right meter

who else can we possibly trust

 

It does not matter what form a poem takes

A poet must not mistake

an epic, a limerick or an ode

As long as a poet can bring back the spring

in the middle of winter.

 

A poet can make you sing

and help you see the purpose of a fly

and you can either believe every word

or decide to defy

its relevance or ambiguity

but we must admit the poet’s acuity

for words and how to use them in a soliloquy.

 

Being a poet is not an easy job

a poet can make you smile

or make your heart throb

 

A poet can also make you think

about so many things that need thinking

and when you don’t understand

the message it can really stink

 

but as for me

I still hope to be

a poet someday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Mind


Mountain Scene

 

My mind drifts often
Like snow does in a winter storm
It takes short walks to get energized
When it returns
It reminds me of the sweet things in life

It does not allow me to think about the
Times of strife and suffering and of when
Sometimes my soul was not a soul

My mind escapes me occasionally;
It takes vacations to exotic places,
Where everyone is so relaxed,
They forget they exist.
What a wonderful feeling that can be sometimes.

My mind fills with imagination;
It questions the questionable;
It rejects the rejection;
Without exception.

My mind builds mountains
On the dessert.
Makes the moon smile sometimes,
And grows tiger lilies on the side
Of a lonely road to keep it company

My mind
Yes, it is quite unique
Inventive, and sometimes absent
From reality and the truth.

Thoughts on Poetry


“Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt,

and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.”

                                           –   Leonardo da Vinci

Magic Touch

“Love, the poet said, is woman’s whole existence.”

                                          – Virginia Woolf

Wet Hibiscus

“Poetry, she thought, wasn’t written to be analyzed;

it was meant to inspire without reason, to touch without understanding.”

– Nicholas Sparks

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“Poetry is Life;  life is Poetry”

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Melba Christie

Happy Birthday William!


Happy Birthday William!

by Melba Christie (c) 2014

 

Pardon me if I sound presumptuous

As I do not mean to be bold

Perhaps it is not proper of me

that I address you by your given name.

But I am honored if you allow me to do the same.

 

You see my seventh grade teacher is to blame

as she made it very clear

your poetry would become so dear

to all of us

She made a huge fuss

and made us memorize whole stanzas

and on your birthday every year

she would have what she called Shakespeare’s extravaganza

 

Also I feel I have known you all my life

you describe much of my strife

besides my father’s name was William too

and maybe this is why I could not help

but to be attracted to you

 

I never want to “speak an infinite deal of nothing”

I feel “the best is yet to come”

as I slowly but surely become

a poet to be followed

an honor I hope is bestowed

upon me before my death

“For in that sleep of death what dreams may come”

““True hope is swift, and flies with swallow’s wings.”

 

This is why I sing

today and everyday

“O wonderful, wonderful, and most wonderful wonderful!

And yet again wonderful”

God knows I never want to be dull

 

So today, the 113th day, of this year 2014

and on the 450th anniversary of your birth,

I celebrate with great mirth

your sonnets most of all.

They taught me about the complexities of love

and how we fall

to romance, destiny from the heavens above.

 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY WILLIAM!

 

 

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List of Sites about Shakespeare and his Works

http://www.williamshakespearefacts.net/list-of-shakespeare-sonnets.html

Let Poemattic know how you do on this Quiz.

http://www.theguardian.com/culture/quiz/2014/apr/23/childrens-books-shakespeare-birthday-quiz

Article

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/theatre/william-shakespeare/10777409/Shakespeares-450th-birthday-Now-all-the-world-is-his-stage.html

 

 

 

I had a dream that I had been a guest at 27 rue de Fleurus


I had a dream that I had been a guest at
27 rue de Fleurus

I had a dream
That I had been a guest at
27 rue de Fleurus

Picasso, William Carlos Williams,
Matisse and a few others happened
To drop by.

Oh my!
I felt like I was in heaven.
I asked Matisse to look at one of my portraiture paintings
The one I called exotic lady.
Not a resemblance of me. I think.
He stared at it and did not say a word.

But Picasso approached with caution
and I stepped back to let him
get a good view
and he smiled.

Oh wow!
I did not want to awake.
I wanted the dream to last
So I could speak to Carlos
And ask him about his epic Poem Paterson
This is the town where I taught for many years
I told him.

The place where “everyone has roots”
I believed that “every child is an artist”

I asked him what he thought about his Paterson today
He did not respond but my heart
knew the answer.

27 rue de Fleurus
was a beautiful place
I was in awe of the art
Overwhelmed with the culture
And the echoes of great thoughts

Oh my!
It’s time to get up
Or I’ll be late to work.

Melba Christie 2014

27 Rue de Fleurus

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12 Favorite Quotes to Write by in 2014


where letters  lay

I found an old notebook as I was trying to give some order to the stuff that is stored in the attic. I always sit as comfortably as possible when this happens because I end up reading the whole notebook in remembrance of things past.

These are quotes I had jotted in some entries and they added up to twelve of my favorite quotes about thinking and writing. Most of them are by my favorite poets and writers. I decided I would use them to remind me of what will be most important throughout this brand new blogging  year.

I hope you find some worthy of adopting for your use.

1. “A poem is never finished only abandoned.”

– Paul Valery

* I found a few poems I abandoned and will work on them again.

2. “As for style of writing, if one has anything to say, it drops from him simply and directly, as a stone falls to the ground.”

– Henry David Thoreau

3. “The act of writing is the act of discovering what you believe.”

– David Hare

* This has been so true for me personally.

4. “When everyone is against you, it means that you are absolutely wrong – or absolutely right.”

– Albert Guinan

5. ““Every secret of a writer’s soul, every experience of his life, every quality of his mind, is written large in his works.”
– Virginia Woolf

*Her life too.

6. “How do I know what I think until I see what I say.”

–  E. M. Forster

7. “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside of you”

– Maya Angelou

8. ““Delay is natural to a writer. He is like a surfer — he bides his time, waits for the perfect wave on which to ride in. Delay is instinctive with him. He waits for the surge (of emotion? of strength? of courage?) that will carry him along.”

– E.B. White

9. “If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry.”

– Emily Dickinson

10. “Better than a thousand hollow words, is one word that brings peace.”

– Buddha

* I try to write with this purpose.

11. “To live a creative life we must first lose the fear of being wrong.”

– Joseph Chilton Pearce

* Fear does take over sometimes. It is usually the fear that was instilled in me by my seventh grade teacher. I always her voice inside my head. “Be clear and precise and for heavens sake be careful with your grammar.

12. ““There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they’ll take you.”

– Beatrix Potter

* I loved her books as a kid.

Happy Blogging!

Melba Christie

 

 

 

 

Poets are Everywhere


 

Poets are Everywhere

 

 

 

                        Poetry is life and a poet can be found anywhere. It is so delightful when poets are appreciated and celebrated.  Poets interpret life for us on every level. In my earlier post I highlighted Michael Hoppe and his musical repertoire inspired by some of the best poets. I look for this inspiration everywhere I go and it does not fail; I manage to connect to that magical world each time. This place is such a place.

Melba Christie (C) 2013

See Poetry is Life by Melba Christie

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Poem for A Mime


The french mime Jyjou* in typical mime's posit...
The french mime Jyjou* in typical mime’s positions inspired by the french Etienne Decroux’s mime technique. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

I met a mime the other day.

He looked into my soul as I prayed,

and watched me very carefully

to find out how I used to be

before my heart turned cold.

He mimicked me so perfectly

the tears he shed were mine

he knew my heart was broken

when he looked into my eyes.

A mime can tell

when nothing’s well;

and happiness flees the body

Mimes create the illusion

and can become almost anybody.

I met a mime the other day

who knew what not to say

he used his hands and facial gestures

to tell me anyway.

I ended up with a smile on my face

and got the message

loud and clear

in a universal language

I learned that I am not to fear.

My mime made sure I saw myself

in His image to rebuild my self-esteem

But what I did not know until today

the mime I met the other day

was just visiting my dream.

Melba Christie 2013

 

 

 

 

В один прекрасный день,попробовать себя мне в ...
В один прекрасный день,попробовать себя мне в роли мима предложили и я себя согласил) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

National Poetry Month


April is the month to celebrate poetry. The month has been designated National Poetry Month.  I like to think that with April showers and the beginning of spring comes inspiration and thus more of us may be inclined to pay attention to our muses. I write poems every day. But there is something about spring that inspires me to read aloud my favorite poems and to write more of my own.

The Dodge Poetry Foundation is devoted to fomenting the appreciation of poetry read aloud. They sponsor teacher’s seminars called Clearing the Spring, Tending the Fountain, http://www.dodgepoetry.org/schools/spring-fountain/registration-information/ every year. 

Another great site is Poets.org. where you can create your own poetry notebook to collect your favorite poems. Many libraries and book stores sponsor poetry readings this month. Check your town’s local activity calendar.

Happy National Poetry Month. I want to thank the followers and supporters of Poemattic. I leave you with a few quotes to ponder: Happy reading and Happy writing!!

 

 

“Poetry is the journal of the sea animal living on land, wanting to fly in the air.  Poetry is a search for syllables to shoot at the barriers of the unknown and the unknowable.  Poetry is a phantom script telling how rainbows are made and why they go away.”  –Carl Sandburg, Poetry Considered

 

“To see the Summer Sky
Is Poetry, though never in a Book it lie –
True Poems flee.”
Emily Dickinson

Poetry is truth in its Sunday clothes. – Joseph Roux

Poetry is what in a poem makes you laugh, cry, prickle, be silent, makes your toe nails twinkle, makes you want to do this or that or nothing, makes you know that you are alone in the unknown world, that your bliss and suffering is forever shared and forever all your own.

What are your favorite quotes about poetry?

Image 

Melba Christie 

 

Romance


At first sight love is

unpredictable like the

splendor of the sunset;

one never knows how

glorious it could be.

But the uniqueness of that

one instant

when you know that you know

and what it is is

what is meant to be

then that unique one moment

will never cease to be.

-Melba Christie

Unique Destiny


The purpose of a unique destiny

can only be defined

by the free flight of a butterfly

It will lead you to the path

you never knew you had chosen.

Someone had a unique plan for you

and one for me too.

The blueprint is clear

This is why the hummingbird hovers

over all red flowers

This is why you allow the moon to follow you

around on a summer night

This is why poets love the truth

This is why an eagle takes fight

This is why our bodies are pollen

and generations blossom.

This is why I am what I am.

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NaBo11_d60_2460a (Photo credit: jerryoldenettel)