Wednesday, April 22, 2015

PAD Day 22: Happy Earth Day!

It's hard to believe it's been 45 years since the very first Earth Day, which I am old enough to have celebrated.  We planted trees on the quad that day, and I started to hang out with my first college girlfriend.  I wonder how big those trees are now.

Today I'm giving a poetic shout-out to my friend Kendall Bell, who has been over-achieving for the last couple of NaPoWriMo's.  Dude has probably written between 50 and 60 poems so far this month. I'll make it to 30 today - what a slacker I am. Anyway, Kendall is editor of Maverick Duck Press and the poetry journal Chantarelle's Notebook.  He has a carload of chapbooks out (one of the perks of having your own small press).  You can read some of his stuff here.

Today's prompts from Poetic Asides and NaPoWriMo are very similar and in honor of Earth Day, I presume:
(1) Write a nature poem, and 
(2) Write a "pastoral" poem.

I actually relieved some of the pressure of producing a poem by writing a haiku first thing this morning (more of a senryu, really):

cherry trees in bloom
his only daughter tries on
a prom dress

Later on, though , I wrote this one, After hearing today's weather forecast, I actually did start to hear this classical work in my head:

Suburban Pastorale
The forecast for this spring day sounds like
Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony, his paean
to nature – seductively sunny and warm
until late afternoon, when thunderstorms will roll in.
Out the door this morning in a light jacket,
I see that all my trees are flowering –
the apple, the dogwood, the weeping cherry.
If there was a brook in my yard,
it would be babbling –
Herr Ludwig’s strings would see to that.
I drive to work allegro ma non troppo,
plod through my day until release, and
back into a glorious afternoon, heading home
with flute-and-clarinet birdsong in my head.
Kids play hockey and ride bikes in the street,
a scherzo of activity. Almost in unison,
we look up at the dimming sun,
as dark clouds build in the west.
The low strings begin to rumble,
the tympani stands ready.
Here comes the crescendo.

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