Northwest School Poem Today on April 21, 2014

NaPoWriMo PROMPT:   is a “New York School” poem using the recipe found here. The New York School is the name by which a group of poets that all lived in New York in the 1950s and 1960s. The most well-known members are Frank O’Hara, John Ashbery, and Kenneth Koch. Their poems are actually very different from one another, but many “New York School” poems display a sort of conversational tone, references to friends and to places in and around New York, humor, inclusion of pop culture, and a sense of the importance of art (visual, poetic, and otherwise). Here’s a fairly representative example.

In following the recipe, you can include as many (or as few) of the listed elements as you wish. Happy writing!



Northwest School Poem Today on April 21, 2014

I forget how many years we gather

at my dining table highly polished with Enddust

on Mondays we sit, the five of us and write

for the past six or seven years

except now Pam is off to Barcelona

so sometimes it is four or three of us.

Where is Anny going?  Anny with a “y”

because it really is the “y” meaning “and”

In Spanish and I mistook it in her email

Zee the four pound Papillon  barks

when they arrive, not ringing the bell

and we will all forget for a moment

who has cancer and who doesn’t

and I’ll turn off the new age music

because Pam likes silence even

though she won’t be here we know

bodies still are smothered beneath the oso

landslide and grief lies in all our hearts

but not only  because Gabriel Garcia Marques

died or we can’t geta starbucks

the orange marmalade monster

will gallop across our written pages and even

Barbara will tolerate his insistent presence

for who but a cat can make us smile rather

than yell?  The Bellingham Herald rests unopened

for me to know the local disasters

because someone else jumped at Whatcom Falls

and was injured last week.  Linda will talk

of Passover and I will warn of the play

Women of Lockerbee I saw yesterday

Don’t you fuckin’ wanna ticket to Lady Gaga?

I need a cup of Wood’s Coffee chai.

Mercury rests silent at the bottom

of Bellinham Bay and a Cardinal Grand Cross

hangs in the heavens.

C.J. Prince   ©2014



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