It’s like seeing a blue sky (2011)
by C.A. Swaim
It’s like seeing a blue sky,
Through a black lattice;
The bars of a dark jail.
It’s like hearing laughter,
Echoing down a long hall;
But you don’t know which room.
It’s like nursing a wilted flower,
That’s given up;
Starved for water.
It’s hard to believe that exists,
Only because it doesn’t exist for you;
Why does it exist for me?
"The Fathers Swaim" is the name of my documentary narrative I’m writing for creative writing. My focus is on my grandfather and father and their construction abilities and how that’s an art. The piece is a mixture of poetry and prose, but since my biggest weakness is poetry I wanted to post the current two poems in the piece and see if I can get some feedback.
* * *
A gentle pluck
Dissonance, a frown
A gentle pluck
This repetition isn’t insanity
A gentle pluck
Ready to play.
Like Rome, rise fast and hard
Build strong and vast
And then be resilient.
Like Rome, expand and evolve,
Protect the land
But do not stretch thin.
Unlike Rome, do not fall
Into a ruin of brick and nail
But bow out gracefully.
This one became a Sherlock ficlet.
* * *
February 16, 2014
Chirk – v. Informal, to cheer (usually followed by ‘up’)
John knew something was amiss as soon as he opened the door to his and Mary’s flat. It was eerily quiet – unusual if Mary were home as she’d typically be singing or chattering away on the phone to her blasted cousin in Cardiff.
“Mary!” he called into the silence. He removed his coat and hung it up, kicking his shoes off as well before moving further into the unknown. “I’m home!”
“In here, John!” she called from the parlor.
John hadn’t realized he had been feeling anxious until the relief washed over him now. With a wide grin, he sauntered down the hall and into the parlor—
The next couple of minutes were a blur that ended with an overturned chair, bewildered guests left to their own devices, and John sitting at the breakfast table in the kitchen, head in hand. If only hiding his face could hide his embarrassment.
“I’m sorry, John, I should have thought that through better,” sighed Mary as she sat steaming tea in front of her fiancé. “You’ve been so down I thought a surprise party for your birthday might chirk you up a bit.” Her small smile was apologetic, and a little sad.
John removed his hands to smile softly at her. It was the thought behind the gesture that counted, after all, and she couldn’t help it if he had PTSD. He reached out to intertwine his fingers with hers, and brought her knuckle to his lips to kiss gently.
“Thank you, Mary.”
February 15, 2014
ailurophilia - n. a liking for cats, as by cat fanciers
Cat shows are invariably ailurophiliac conventions, filled to the brim with your crazy cat ladies and other stereotypes, and then some. Don’t just reach out and pet any kitty cat you see because you’re liable to lose a hand. You see, these cats are so much more important than you.
February 14, 2014
schatzi – n. Slang. Sweetheart, darling
The music was low and slow, the conversation few and far between. Shane sat behind the bar, having dragged one of the stools around, and watched the sparsely populated room. Mostly men sat alone, nursing hard liquor and sour attitudes.
She couldn’t really blame them, though. Today was the first day of The Idoneas, the festival celebrating Idonea, Goddess of Love, and by conjunction love and family. It was half a fortnight of couples and anything and everything romance. On one end of the spectrum you had the lovey-dovey people, which was bad enough in Shane’s opinion, but then on the other end…
“SCHATZI! I need you!”
Shane flinched and clenched her teeth together. The man who had just bellowed came into the lounge only an hour ago, but he had already driven her up the wall and down again with his shameless flirting and chauvinistic manner. He stumbled through the entrance drunk, paying only half of the admission fee before falling into the nearest booth and yelling for service. Shane had attempted to throw him out, but Ruine had emerged from his office to protest. (“We need the business right now!”)
“I’m going to eat him for dinner…” she muttered to herself as she slid from the stool to go see what the ‘customer’ wanted. She’d rather listen to lovebirds cooing at each other.
I swore I set this post up yesterday but it’s since disappeared. Here’s Thursday’s exercise. I’ll be posting today’s once I write it.
* * *
February 13, 2014
Pluvial – adj. of or pertaining to rain; rainy
“A pluvial journey, to be sure,” remarked Queen Marumai as she disembarked from the royal galley. She stepped carefully from plank to dock and then straightened, turning to look up at the dock. Rainwater still dripped from the railings and glistened in the sun.
With a sniff, the queen plucked up her skirts to keep from dragging them along the wet boards, and then began to gingerly traverse the slick dock to the carriage that awaited to take her home.
These are just going to be daily exercises to get me to write SOMETHING. Expect some to be much more inspired than others.
* * *
February 12, 2014
albumen – n. the white of an egg
The class president candidate gripped the podium and stared at the crowd spread out before him, blurry and barely distinguishable through the uncooked albumen as it slowly slid down his face. An unbroken yolk slid into his glasses and settled in the groove of his eye socket, cradled by the lens. Now his vision was blocked as they roared with their laughter.
The Dictionary.com app alerts me to the Word of the Day. I haven’t been writing much, and with school I don’t have much time for leisurely creative writing, so I thought maybe every day I’d write a little something - anything - using the Word of the Day in some way. Perhaps I’ll post them here.