whiteout: letting your poetic words breathe freely


Poetry writing can become a bit stale if we fail to vary our method of execution. Yesterday, I brought an offering of magnetic poetry to the table. Sometimes it’s a haiku or three, maybe other forms of micropoetry or an ode, or sonnet, can be seen.

Today I am joining in with a bit of whiteout poetry where words emerge from shaded darkness whited out, looking to escape their confines and fly like birds, freed from a cage of conformity.

My first attempt has been inspired by a post on my adventurous poet friend, Kat Myrman’s site. The link up is available here if you also fancy some poetic fun, whereby we draw words out from a given poem, creating one of our own in the process. Here’s this week’s poem to work with….

February Elegy by Mary Jo Bang
© Mary Jo Bang

This bald year, frozen now in February.
This cold day winging over the ugly
Imperfect horizon line,

So often a teeth line of ten buildings.
A red flag
In the wind. An orange curtain is noon.
It all hurts her eyes. This curtain is so bright.
Here is what is noticeably true: sight.
The face that looks back from the side

Of the butter knife.
A torn-bread awkwardness.

The mind makes its daily pilgrimage
Through riff-raff moments. Then,
Back into the caprice case to dream
In a circle, a pony goes round.

The circle’s association: There’s a center
To almost everything but never
Any certainty. Nothing is
More malleable than a moment. We were
Only yesterday breathing in a sea.
Some summer sun
Asked us over and over we went. The sand was hot.

We were only yesterday tender hearted
Waiting. To be something.
A spring. And then someone says, Sit down,
We have a heart for you to forget.
A mind to suffer
With. So, experience. So, the circus tent.
You, over there, you be the girl
In red sequins on the front of a card selling love.
You, over there, you, in black satin.
You be the Maiden’s Mister Death.


Frozen February

Frozen now in February—this cold day

flapping in the wind—it all hurts her eyes

so bright…

Here is what is noticeably true:

the mind makes its daily pilgrimage

through riff-raff moments

There’s a centre to almost everything

but never any certainty

We were only yesterday tender-hearted

waiting to be something:

a spring, a mind to suffer with

You, over there, you be the girl

selling love

You, over there, you…

be the Maiden’s Mister Death