Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Tuesday Tips and Techniques: Poetry as Prompts

Poetry is a great prompt for art journaling.  Words tumble across the page like music, and bring images immediately to mind.  Using your favorite poems are great for a start, but how about writing some of your own?     I know it can be scary if it's something you're not used to doing, but give it a try.  There are many different poetry forms that are easy enough for the novice.

This past week, my class and I learned some new poetry forms ourselves.  The first form we explored was the Alphabet (or ABC) poem.  This form of poetry contains 5 lines.  You may begin with any letter of the alphabet but each successive line of poetry must begin with the next letter.  For example, your 5 lines may begin with A, B, C, D, E.  If you choose to begin with letter R, your following lines would begin with S, T, U, and V.  Here's my Alphabet poem.

First of all, a black and white image on Angelia's blog?  I know, I know - shocking isn't it?  I bought a new white Sharpie paint pen that I wanted to try out (which I like a lot!).  I began my Harvest Moon poem with the letter E.

Enigmatic wonder of 
Fall sky - 
Gleam on 
Harvest Moon -
Initiate October
The second form of poetry we explored was the Acrostic poem.  I somehow had it written as Acoptic poem.  I'm claiming that the site I was using had a typo.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it!  Anyway, the correct form is Acrostic.  In this form of poetry, the title of the poem is often the word used for the poem.  The word (or two words) that the poem is about should be written out vertically.  For my poem, I used the word "leaves".

Lovely gems
Emit a glow -
Ambassadors of
Vacant limbs
Escape their
Summer Prison

If these two poetry forms are still just a tad more creative writing than you care to indulge in, the third poetry form that we explored was the Copy/Change poem.  I had never heard of this form of poetry until one of my students (and friend), Katherine, showed me the poem that she has written.  You can see her poem here.

For my Copy/Change poem, I chose an old Rod McKuen poem that I remember from the .....well, more than just a few years ago.  His poem is titled "Listen to the Warm", and it is also the title of his book of poetry that includes this poem.  To my amazement, when I researched a copy of this poem, I also discovered that he also sang and has albums.  His song, (different from the poem), "Listen to the Warm", is playing on my MixPad player today. I did not write to Mr. McKuen and ask permission to use his poem in this way. No copyright infringement is intended.  My high school English teacher, Mr. Shaner, always said that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery.  I hope Mr. McKuen agrees.

Here's "Listen to the Warm", by Rod McKuen.

Here's my Copy/Change poem titled, "Listen in the Dawn"
(Click on image to enlarge)

I have these poems together as one spread.  The colors for "Listen to the Warm" emulate the colors that I remember on the cover of Rod McKuen's book.  The colors I used for "Listen in the Dawn", represent my very dark bedroom as I awaken.  My sweet hubby brings me coffee in the morning before he leaves for work. (Yes, I am a spoiled princess!) 

I hope you'll consider using poetry as a prompt in your art journaling endeavors. I hope some old favorite but forgotten poems come to mind as you read this post,  and I hope you'll try writing some of your own poetry.  Here's a site to help you explore some new poetry forms on your own: Poetry Online  Hey - why leave any creative stone unturned as you "Celebrate, LOVE, and Create!"

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Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me! It's a pleasure sharing the creative world of art journaling with you. I love hearing from you, so comments and questions are always welcome.

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