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Sunday, August 31, 2014

THIS JUST IN

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FOR RESIDENTS OF GEORGIA
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TODAY at 2:30 P.M. as part of the DECATUR BOOK FESTIVAL'S "Where Poetry Lives" feature, the 19th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry, Natasha Trethewey will participate in a discussion about her signature project "Where Poetry Lives."

                                                  

Thursday, August 28, 2014

POETRY CHALLENGE 15

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CAN YOU HANDLE IT?
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Write a poem explaining why people are more afraid of the "light" than they are of the "dark".

TAKING CHALLENGE 14

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NO FAIRY TALE


once upon a time
the world in which
we lived had lines
of separation drawn
down the middle like
the imaginary equator
dividing the globe
in half but
unlike the circle                              
not equally
distant from each
other the                                          
one side for colored only
the other side not
it was clearly
unbalanced though all
were created equal


POETIC BIRTHDAY

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BORN ON THIS DAY
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1952
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RITA DOVE was the 2nd Black poet and woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, winning it in 1987 for her book Thomas and Beulah.

From 1993-95 she served as Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress. At 40. Dove was the youngest person to hold the position and the first Black poet to be appointed to this position since it was created in 1986 from the previous "consultant in poetry" position.

No stranger to special achievements and awards in her life, Dove has written numerous poetry collections and has received a plethora of literary awards and academic honors, among them over 25 honorary doctorates.



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To read her bio, google-search her name. To sample her poetry log on to poetryfoundation.org





Thursday, August 21, 2014

POETRY CHALLENGE 14

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CAN YOU HANDLE IT?
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Write a poem using "once upon a time" as your first or last line.

TAKING CHALLENGE 13

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WHEN THINGS HAPPEN


unexpected
you must
under the most
controlled mind
think
what is the
worst case scenario

and what if anything
can i do
about it
what is the best
course of action
to take
that will
get things back
under control
if you can
do it
life will handle the
rest if you can't
life will still
handle the rest
and then reveal
to the world
what kind of person
you really are

Sunday, August 17, 2014

POETIC BIRTHDAY/POET PROFILE

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                           1837

CHARLOTTE FORTEN GRIMKE was born on this day. She was a poet, anti-slavery activist, and educator.

Charlotte was born into the prominent Black Forten-Purvis family of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She began writing poetry in 1856, much of which was activist in theme. Her poetry was published in The Liberator and Anglo African magazines.

Forten studied literature and teaching at the Salem Normal School in Massachusetts. After graduating, she taught at the Epes Grammar School, also in Salem, Massachusetts, where she was well received.

During the American Civil War, Forten was the first Black teacher to join the mission to the South Carolina Sea Islands known as the Port Royal Experiment.
While here, she worked with many freedman and their children. She chronicled these times in several essays which were published in the Atlantic Monthly in the May and June issues of 1864.

Charlotte was a regular journal writer until she returned north after teaching in South Carolina. Her diary, The Journal of Charlotte Forten: A Free Negro in the Slave Era, is one of the few extant documents detailing the life of a free Black female in the antebellum North.

Later in life she married Francis James Grimke, a minister. He was the mixed-race nephew of the abolitionist Grimke sisters and active in civil rights.

Although very active in the anti-slavery and women's rights movements, Forten died in 1914, before either cause won full civil rights.

To read her biography google-search her name and read all the related entries. To read some of her poetry link on to poets.org and poemhunters.com

Saturday, August 16, 2014

SHARING MY WORKSHOP EXPERIENCE

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On Saturday, 7/26 & Sunday, 7/27. The Poet Outlaw attended a weekend workshop at POETS HOUSE in New York City.

The workshop, PROMPTS FOR POETS was led  by Valerie Fox & Lynn Levin, authors of the book "Poems for the Writing: Prompts for Poets."

During the workshop we explored several of the prompts in their book.





PROMPT - WRITE AN "UNANSWERABLE LETTER" POEM.

MY EFFORT:


dear papa

when they laid you

down to sleep in

that backwoods cemetery

your final resting place

committed your body back

to the dust to the ashes

of the earth

dropped that first shovel

of dark moist soil on

top of you

papa i tell you

they might of well

had covered me up too 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

POETRY CHALLENGE 13

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CAN YOU HANDLE IT?
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Write a poem describing how you deal with the unexpected.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

TAKING CHALLENGE 12

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SWITCHING GEARS


first
plan A
was iffy
from the start
thinking deeply
from A-Z  the
strategy was still
iffy because
people change
their nature
switch courses in
mid-stream
then don't even love
you anymore
and somewhere along
the way you resort
to the next
plan B
which was all
you had left
in hoping
in helping
it work out
but love is
iffy  so
it didn't matter
anyway