NaPoWriMo: Objects, Heard

(I am participating in National/Global Poetry Month as I continue to write small poems each morning. – Kevin)

Day Twenty Seven: Objects, Heard

(inspired by Kim)

I’m falling my way
into earbud air:
Familiar and unfamiliar voices,
alike, in the whispers, working
through the ether of connection;
Whether song or talk,
electronic pulses settle inside
my ears, comfortable as
silence

(Inspired by Algot)

Lawnmower music
surrounding neighborhood noise;
the discord of Spring

Peace (listening to friends),
Kevin

NaPoWriMo: This Remembered Place

(I am participating in National/Global Poetry Month as I continue to write small poems each morning. – Kevin)

Day Twenty Six: This Remembered Place

Knowing as we do now
what it is we did not know then,
what more might we have gathered
if we had that time again?

Your favorite pencil,
maybe, the one with
the short, sharpened stub and
bright blue eraser?

Your sticker packet, perhaps,
its neon artwork stubbornly
affixed to locker doors
and desks?

Your go-to comic books,
I’d ponder, the ones you’d hide
inside your textbook, as if we
never looked?

Or your much-loved pink glove,
with holes in the fingers,
its soft fabric shredded
by tag and run?

Every one – all of us —
left without the other

from this remembered place
now narrowed down
to panels on a screen:

pixelated by presence,
illuminated by absence

Note: I took part in a Saturday writing workshop of ‘teachers as writers” through the Western Massachusetts Writing Project. We started in a video chat, moved offline for an hour or so to write, gathered back into small online response groups, and ended up back together in a large gathering. There were prompts we could use, if we wanted, and I used the “If I Had Known” prompt for my poem, of remembering the classroom space now reduced to video chatting.

Call of the Lonely

Peace (in presence and absence),
Kevin

NaPoWriMo: I’ll Connect With You (song demo)

(I am participating in National/Global Poetry Month as I continue to write small poems each morning. – Kevin)

Day Twenty Five: I’ll Connect With You

When it’s all gone small and reduced to the screen
when the distance between us is more than we’ve seen
We can still find a way to get on through
You keep an eye on me and I’ll keep an eye on you

So I’m sending out a signal on the video lines
hoping if you hear me that you’re doing fine
‘cause if you’ve got time, I’ll connect with you

I never once thought that we’d be here
worrying about each other from far and near
and I’ve got the time if you connect with me

Note: This entry is actually the last stanza and chorus for a song I worked on yesterday, to share my writing process and music with my students, from a distance. And it is all about distance, and thinking of how a real sense of loneliness is starting to surface in my interactions with my students more than before.

Peace (singing it),
Kevin

NaPoWriMo: For People of Good Will (In a World of Algorithms)

(I am participating in National/Global Poetry Month as I continue to write small poems each morning. – Kevin)

Day Twenty Four: For People of Good Will (In a World of Algorithms)

Face it – it’s fake –
this world’s overflowing
with modern-day
data-mining automated
Argonauts mixing fame
and fortune, remixing the game
we think we knew rules to play,
and the question remains
of whether or not we care
to share or take the blame
of it all, to bend the algorithms
or to break them

Note: This poem follows the fourth and final session of the NWP Grapples project, in which we have been meeting monthly to tackle thorny and ethical issues of AI and learning, and society at large, and it has been fascinating to dive into the topics. Last night, we spent some time looking at and grappling with what’s real and what’s fake, but a larger discussion led to Richard talking about finding hope and beauty and humanity (a theme that ran through all of the Grapple sessions) in the connections afforded by any technology, and that “people of good will” (referencing gatherings of Civil Rights movement) can push back against algorithms that either purposefully or inadvertently dehumanize our experiences.

Peace (and hope in humanity),
Kevin

NaPoWriMo: The Seas of This Belief

(I am participating in National/Global Poetry Month as I continue to write small poems each morning. – Kevin)

Day Twenty Two: The Seas of This Belief

Keep the peace,
Poseidon, keep
the peace

For while the Greeks conjured you
with stories of jealousy and lust,
an angry ocean god
with trident arms

I remained, forever,
a protector of the innocent
from such tirades,
your moods of spite

Neither whirlpool nor
tidal surge nor riptide
nor dead sea rising
shakes faith of possibility

Only poets know of me –
the poets, they dream of me –
the unspoken guardian
of the ocean deep, the seas
of belief

Keep the peace,
Poseidon, keep
the peace, or reckon
the world with me

Note: This is the last prompt for the Water Poems Project that I have been doing in tandem with my daily poetry this month, with Laura Shovan. This prompt was to write a poem of the ocean goddess.

Peace (in hubris),
Kevin

NaPoWriMo: StarShade SunFlower

(I am participating in National/Global Poetry Month as I continue to write small poems each morning. – Kevin)

Day Twenty One: StarShade SunFlower

Imagine
this in bloom –
star-shade-sun-flower
nighttime wonder –
its man-made petals
reaching hundreds
of length beyond the eye,
across the far sky,
its stem connected
by link-line to telescope,
a fully-aware
cosmic beauty
finding light by defining dark,
capturing dark by ignoring light,
the star-blocker
life-detector
planet-collector
satellite
always in search
for something
else

Note: this poem was inspired by work of astrophysicist Sarah Seager, working to map exoplanets https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/07/magazine/the-world-sees-me-as-the-one-who-will-find-another-earth.html

(Image: © NASA/JPL/Caltech)

 

Peace (imagining it),
Kevin

NaPoWriMo: Sitting in a Ragged Stonehenge

(I am participating in National/Global Poetry Month as I continue to write small poems each morning. – Kevin)

Day Twenty: Sitting in a Ragged Stonehenge

Of beer, banter
and beach chairs –
six feet apart
on the lawn at dusk –
we sit around, staggered
like rocks in a ragged
Stonehenge, progressive
opinionated people,
just waiting
for this time
to pass

Peace (with neighbors),
Kevin

NaPoWriMo: Flowers Know Little

(I am participating in National/Global Poetry Month as I continue to write small poems each morning. – Kevin)

Flowers in Snow

Day Nineteen: Flowers Know Little

The flowers
know little
of Spring’s
sudden retreat

huddled tight
inside snow
and ice
for survival

the day’s sun
still hours away
from a noontime
arrival

Flowers in Snow

Peace (what Spring brings),
Kevin