NaPoWriMo – 5 Poems From The First Week (And A Bit)

As many of you know, I am writing 30 poems in 30 days this month for NaPoWriMo. I chose not to post every single poem for a number of reasons, one reason in particular being that I usually prefer to handwrite my poetry (at least in its initial stages). I did promise that I would post some poems, roughly once a week, and so here we are with my first batch of dodgy poetry (I never said I was a good poet).

The first poem is without form and rhyme, then I have included some shorter poems I have written – 2 haikus, and a limerick for a bit of fun – before ending with a villanelle. In all cases they are pretty much as they were when I first wrote them, and so they are all in need of some work, but I have decided to leave them for now.

Calluses 

A drop
runs down the outside
of an icy glass bottle,
running down over hands
scorched red, brown and black
from the sun,
where wrinkles blend with
scars.

The hand
pulls away to be
examined, fingers outstretched,
lines and scars and
leathery texture
abound.
The thumb runs over the
tips of the other fingers
where calluses
once were.

The fingers
twitch upon the imaginary
feel of steel against
skin.

The bottle
draws the hand back.
Fingers clench tightly
as another drop
glides along
a weathered, scarred finger.

Inside

Wind whistling past
these walls, a prison hiding
this suffocation.

Tide

Below the ocean
roars, the swirling void where life
and death will soon meet.

The Quitter

There once was a bit of a quitter,
who quit so much he was bitter.
But then he quit work,
was no more a jerk,
until the twit signed up for Twitter.

Villanelle: A Sound

Found
the small
permeating sound.

It hung around
in the hall,
waiting to be found. 

A small hidden mound
found in the wall
emanated that lingering sound.

Gazing at the bump I frowned.
Uncertainty caused me to stall 
As I wondered what was to be found.

I felt myself tightly wound, 
no longer so mighty and so tall,
but scared stiff from that shrieking sound. 

Suddenly I screamed and fell through the ground,
realising I’d been tricked, I felt defeat’s gall.
Curiosity had cost me but at least I had found
the reason behind that malevolent sound. 

So there we have it. Feel free to provide feedback but keep in mind these poems are very much in their infancy.

How is everybody else going with NaPoWriMo?

16 thoughts on “NaPoWriMo – 5 Poems From The First Week (And A Bit)

  1. Ooh, I really like what you did with the villanelle. It’s like a growing poem, unlike that shrinking sestina you shared awhile back. That’s really cool!

    Also, thank you for reminding me how excellent limericks are. I’ll probably do one of those today and it will be all thanks to you.

    • Thank you! Originally I was going to keep all the lines in the villanelle really short, to see if I could do it, but then I actually thought of that shrinking sestina and thought “maybe I could make this grow!” The last couple of stanzas were really hard though, and I wanted it to build up more in both pace and content than it did. But it was fun to tweak with the conventions a little! 😛
      Haha, glad to remind you of limericks – I think they are often forgotten, and while they are more of a novelty poem, they do still require some skill to make work, and are just as much fun to write as to read, I think! Am looking forward to reading yours now! 🙂

  2. Nice job! I really like The Tide. Much more sophisticated than any haikus I have ever written — but mine tend to end with silly things like “senior year is hell” and “refrigerator”!

    • Thank you! 🙂
      I know what you mean, it is quite hard to make haikus complex, because you have so little room to work with. But that is one of the challenges I enjoy about it – sometimes I can spend hours working on a haiku (though of course I walk away and think about it while doing other things), but then sometimes they happen on the spot with ease.

      • I think their simplicity is what is so wonderful about haikus, though — that they don’t have to be complex. They can just be a single feeling or a blade of grass and be really beautiful. When written well, the simplicity of their form can be really powerful and evocative, and more words would detract from the meaning of the poem.

        But because it is so easy to just come up with three lines of 5/7/5 syllables, I make up haikus just to entertain myself and don’t really put any thought into them. I should try to write a real one. Project for this week, maybe…

        • That’s exactly right. In a lot of ways haikus are the ultimate poem, because I have always felt all poetry is supposed to be simple – evocative with the most simple images and the least amount of words – and haikus do this better than any other poem.
          I do know what you mean too, sometimes I just come up with little haikus for fun, like the frog haiku I posted up a week or two ago at the start of this poetry writing month. That was purely for fun; actually I was trying to entertain a friend and show her how it worked, and then I liked it enough to use it, hahaha.
          Good luck with it if you do try to write a serious one, I’d love to see how you go with it. 🙂

    • Thank you! It’s interesting, posting five at once like this, to see which ones different people respond to – the limerick has definitely gone down well. More of those, I think, haha! 🙂

  3. 30 poems in 30 days! Love “sound”. So glad they are handwritten. I am not a writer or poet but sometimes paint their words and find I am drawn to artists who use poets as their muse- Arthur Boyd/Peter porter, hossein Valmanesh/ Rumi, John Olsen/Kenneth Slessor. Love poetry books- they tend to be small and tuckable.good luck -break a pencil!

    • Thank you! I am glad you know where I am coming from with the whole handwriting thing – I just feel it’s more organic and real, and it forces me to slow down the process of actually writing the poems, to take my time. That is interesting how you like artists like that, I like that in itself!
      I will definitely be breaking a pencil or two, I think! 🙂

  4. Funny that whenever I come up with a poem, which isn’t often, it’s usually when I’m nowhere near a computer, so it’s written in pencil on a scrap piece of paper. You’re right about the organic feel to it.

    Calluses and the Haikus were very easy to visualize. The limerick made me laugh and you really brought home how the villanelle works. Thanks for sharing them. 🙂

    • Thank you, I am glad you enjoyed them! 🙂
      I like that you often end up writing a poem on a scrap piece of paper too. I find it interesting the different ways and places people write poetry – I’ve come across some interesting ones on the blogosphere actually, too!

    • Thank you! 🙂
      Yeah, it is a great idea, NaPoWriMo. It’s not actually linked to NaNoWriMo (whereas Script Frenzy is run by the same people), but they do have a link to it on their site (which I think is where I first heard about it). It is nice to delve into a different kind of writing for thirty days – a very different kind of pressure to NaNoWriMo.

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