December 4th, 2009

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Poetry Friday -- Villanelle

Do you guys remember the Poetry Princesses, from way back when?

OK. So. We're not real princesses. We came up with that name as a way to distract ourselves from the dull, thumping awareness that we'd committed to:

1. Writing a Crown Sonnet
2. Publishing it on our blogs
3. Using our real names to do so
4. Not freaking out or throwing up in public

I mean, really.
It's a wonder we just anointed ourselves as royalty.
We might've locked ourselves in the Tower of London with medicinals.

But no.
We're made of crazier stronger stuff than all that.
We wrote the dang sonnets.
And then we retreated into the black holes of our own private blogs for a year and a half.

Well guess what?
The memory finally sufficiently scabbed over and we took on another project -- villanelles this time!

Kelly Fineman, our indisputed Duchess de Form, explains the ins and outs of villanelles here.
Beyond all that, our rules were to include the words friend and Thanksgiving in our first and third lines.
And to finish by today.

Nothing to it.


You should see our panicky Google Mail exchanges from the last two weeks:
"... doesn't meet the requirements..."
"... way darned harder than it looks..."
"... isn't complete garbage..."
"... sigh..."
"... crap..."

But also:
"... lovely..."
"... a comfort..."
"... in awe..."
"... happy..."

Happy to be together again, that it is. Because really, is anything better than a community of smart, funny, like-minded friends willing to take on a 16th century French form poem on a whim? The luck of it all!

So on that note, and with gratitude, we share with you these... our poems.
Thanks for reading. And enjoy.

Kelly Fineman's
Sara Lewis Holmes'
Tanita Davis'
Andromeda Jazmon's
Laura Salas'
Tricia Stohr-Hunt's
and mine:

First Date on the Railroad Trestle

Thanksgiving through her lips, a whispered prayer –
Let this night last, I do not want to say goodbye.
Inside of every friendship there’s a dare,

a pit, a seed, a growing need to strip down bare.
This is me, so full of fear but willing, still, to try.
(Thanksgiving through her lips, a whispered prayer.)

She followed as his feet fell on the makeshift stairs –
breath like water, shoes like stones, a shimmer in her eyes.
Inside of every friendship there’s a dare.

At the top he took her hand, the wind let down her hair.
A slip of moon, his skin on hers, she felt like she could fly.
Thanksgiving through her lips, a whispered prayer

lost in the coming of the train, the whistle blared.
Right now, he yelled. The dark turned light, she didn’t even cry --
inside of every friendship there’s a dare.

I did not fall, the trestle held, my god, I did not die.
He laughed and bent to kiss her as the train rolled by.
Thanksgiving through her lips, a whispered prayer.
Inside of every friendship there’s a dare.

(You can find these -- and a lotta other wonderful stuff -- at Wild Rose Reader's Poety Friday Round-Up today!)