Friday, April 1, 2011

April is Poetry Month!

Ode to Pity by Jane Austen

Ever musing I delight to tread
The Paths of honour and the Myrtle Grove
Whilst the pale Moon her beams doth shed
On disappointed Love.
While Philomel on airy hawthorn Bush
Sings sweet and Melancholy, And the thrush
Converses with the Dove.

Gently brawling down the turnpike road,
Sweetly noisy falls the Silent Stream--
The Moon emerges from behind a Cloud
And darts upon the Myrtle Grove her beam.
Ah! then what Lovely Scenes appear,
The hut, the Cot, the Grot, and Chapel queer,
And eke the Abbey too a mouldering heap,
Cnceal'd by aged pines her head doth rear
And quite invisible doth take a peep.

April 7th
I Hear America Singing by Walt Whitman

I HEAR America singing, the varied carols I hear;
Those of mechanics—each one singing his, as it should be, blithe and strong;
The carpenter singing his, as he measures his plank or beam,
The mason singing his, as he makes ready for work, or leaves off work;
The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat—the deckhand singing on the steamboat
The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench—the hatter singing as he stands;
The wood-cutter’s song—the ploughboy’s, on his way in the morning, or at the noon
intermission, or at sundown;
The delicious singing of the mother—or of the young wife at work—or of the girl sewing or
washing—Each singing what belongs to her, and to none else;
The day what belongs to the day—At night, the party of young fellows, robust, friendly,
Singing, with open mouths, their strong melodious songs.

April 6th
I know why the caged bird sings
by Maya Angelou

A free bird leaps on the back
Of the wind and floats downstream
Till the current ends and dips his wing
In the orange suns rays
And dares to claim the sky.

But a BIRD that stalks down his narrow cage
Can seldom see through his bars of rage
His wings are clipped and his feet are tied
So he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings with a fearful trill
Of things unknown but longed for still
And his tune is heard on the distant hill for
The caged bird sings of freedom.

The free bird thinks of another breeze
And the trade winds soft through
The sighing trees
And the fat worms waiting on a dawn-bright
Lawn and he names the sky his own.

But a caged BIRD stands on the grave of dreams
His shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
His wings are clipped and his feet are tied
So he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings with
A fearful trill of things unknown
But longed for still and his
Tune is heard on the distant hill
For the caged bird sings of freedom.

April 5th
The Light of Stars
from Voices of the Night
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The night is come, but not too soon;
And sinking silently,
All silently, the little moon
Drops down behind the sky.

There is no light in earth or heaven
But the cold light of stars;
And the first watch of night is given
To the red planet Mars.

Is it the tender star of love?
The star of love and dreams?
O no! from that blue tent above,
A hero's armor gleams.

And earnest thoughts within me rise,
When I behold afar,
Suspended in the evening skies,
The shield of that red star.

O star of strength! I see thee stand
And smile upon my pain;
Thou beckonest with thy mailed hand,
And I am strong again.

Within my breast there is no light
But the cold light of stars;
I give the first watch of the night
To the red planet Mars.

The star of the unconquered will,
He rises in my breast,
Serene, and resolute, and still,
And calm, and self-possessed.

And thou, too, whosoe'er thou art,
That readest this brief psalm,
As one by one thy hopes depart,
Be resolute and calm.

O fear not in a world like this,
And thou shalt know erelong,
Know how sublime a thing it is
To suffer and be strong.

April 4th
Dancers by Maezy

Light fills the air
As loving pairs
Come together
To show the world
Of what they are capable
For what do they think
That we do not know
Ourselves of love
Because for us,
It has grown weary and worn
But stays still ever strong
Always holding people together
And young lovers happy
So we all dance in an ode to love

*Maezy has more poetry posted on

April 3rd
Imprisoning Darkness by Maezy

Tree limbs twist around us
Their winding tendrils
Reaching out to us,
Wanting to take us
And bury us deep beneath their roots
Never to breath anything but soil

Blue sky blocked by dark leaves
That fall on our heads,
Spreading darkness in our minds
And driving us towards madness
So much that we start to run to
Get out and flee far away

But the creatures of the forest
Confuse us, and make us
Lose our way, never to escape
We run forever in the
Darkness of the forest
Lost and hopeless,
Seeing what could have happened replayed
Behind our eyelids
What could have been

So much so that we
Let the now merciful tendrils
Take us and bury us,
So much that dying is a mercy
But before we sink
Into final darkness,
The sky clears,
The leaves stop falling
And all the creatures are quiet
Admitting one moment of wonder and peace
Before we close our eyes forever.

April 2nd
The House by Jared Gullage

A young couple, newly married, get into their car.
The house sits at the curb and whines,
Its red-painted door shining in the morning,
"Come back to me, sit inside,
Make my hearth beat,
Preheat the oven,
Light the pilot light,
Let me live with you."

The man tightens his lip,
And he doesn't look at the house,
Not willing to say anything,
Afraid his voice might shake his resolve off,
But the woman cries, and she holds up her hand.
"Stay," she says. "Please, don't follow us," she says.

They decide that a house is too big a commitment.
They leave theirs on the side of the road
Between Opelika and Columbus,
Like people trading in their dog for a turtle,
Or a screeching bird.

The house stays. They told it to stay.
"They'll come back," it says.
Its neighborhood watch sticker turns white and peels.
"They'll find me," it says to itself.
Its head turns as the cars pass by,
And it listens for their little van
For the four doors opening wide like bird wings,
Children laughing from school and daycare.

"They'll come," the house says,
"There'll be a Thanksgiving here,
The overwhelming turkey-cooking smell,
Cranberry sauce, stuffing and the stuffed.
They'll be crammed wall to wall,
Bumping butt to shoulder as they try
To find their seats at the family table.

"These cars will see me in the cold November,
And they will want the warmth inside,
The orange glow of Autumn candles,
Televisions tuned to the Auburn-Alabama rivalry,
Everybody's belly full.

"The drivers will open and close their fingers
By their air-conditioner ducts,
And wish they were inside.

"My family'll come and they'll bring their children home,
And in the morning: Styrofoam,
Crinkling cellophane and too many plastic pieces,
And daddy, without his slippers,
Will step on sharp little monsters in the carpet,
And jump back like spiders were biting.
Mother will be making breakfast,
Pancakes and eggy breakfast casseroles,
Eggnog staining the inside of green glasses.
"The hangover of too much Christmas will settle in
And I'll sleep under the white blanket on my head,"

The house says, sitting in Alabama, near Highway 280.

The cars go by, and the house stays;
Its master told it to stay.

The signs grow like weeds in the front yard:
First Realty, Rice Realty, Century 21,
For Sale By Owner.
The signs disappear.

Paint peels.
A few of the shingles shift.
The steps rot.
Cats have kittens in the crawlspace.
Chimney swifts hatch in the chimney,
Bats chitter in the attic.

The cars have a warmth the house envies,
Commuters huddled in their jackets and coats,
The air-conditioner breathes across the radio,
With the man and woman talking about the news.
Journey songs play between new rap and hip hop.

The house shivers.

It waits on its own porch,
Termites and carpenter bee larva in its bones.
It looks over the helmet heads gathered.
It looks over the rumbling bulldozer.

"I stayed. You told me to stay,"
The house breathes out.

Jared Gullage is a novelist and short story writer, first and foremost. Currently he has a novel entitled Drinna on Amazon and I hope Jared will send some more of his poetry our way. He has mentioned he has plans to publish another book (on amazon), a collection of his poetry. I know I look forward to seeing it!

April 1st
Untitled by Sarah

Has it ever occurred to you that we are equal?
Have you ever thought of the people you hurt?
Do you have no heart?
Is your soul made of ice?
Do you never think of the people you're tearing apart?
You'll never tell us
You'll never care
Don't pretend all is well
You are built off insecurity
But I see past your veil of lies
You don't deserve the tears you cause
You don't deserve our sympathy
Why do you place your head on a pedestal?
You bring others down, just to rise above
You'll never have my sympathy
You'll never win our love

Tell us we are not worthy
While you expect us to fall down to our knees
And apologize, when we finally stand up for ourselves
You'll only try to push us down more forcefully
Look beyond our crying when you have made us weak
We are the strong ones overall
We know it is wrong
For you to make us feel so small

You don't deserve this poem
You don't deserve our tears
You don't deserve the power
You have claimed yours over the years
And you will act like you are perfect
As though you are always correct
Has it occurred to you, you aren't always right?
You couldn't be more wrong
Than you are tonight

Thank you Sarah for your very moving work. I am still searching for poems for the month of April. Please submit your poetry or your favorite poem. I will be happy to include a link to your blog/website so my followers can get to know the poet behind the poem.


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