Welcome to One Stop Poetry. Dustus here to introduce today's guest, Michigan blogger Eric Alder—winner of our Humorous Poetry Competition!
As you may recall back to when I hosted Week 22 of One Shot Wednesday, I introduced a Humorous Poetry Contest. Many brave poets submitted poems to be read on a future episode of The Arts Web Show —written, filmed, and edited by artistic blogger Richard North (aka Kseverny). Unfortunately, there can only be one winner, and for this contest Richard chose Eric Alder's narrative poem entitled A Fine Kettle of Fish. As a result, and in addition to providing the link to the video clip presenting a reading of A Fine Kettle of Fish by Eric Alder, I am pleased to both feature Eric and spotlight three of his excellent poems.
"I got started writing in a college Creative Writing class. I had to keep a daily journal and write something (anything) every day. I did the 'dear diary' thing at first, then started writing funny stories. As I learned more about them, I began trying other types of writing. (I got an "A" in the class) ...I've always been a reader. I first got into science-fiction—still my favorite genre. About ten years ago I decided I wanted to read more of the 'great books' of literature. Then, five years later I got into poetry, which opened up new creative vistas for me.... I started blogging in November 2007, on my now defunct Windows Live Space, which has since been migrated to WordPress."
Eric's Sense of Humor...
There have been many instances where I have visited someone's site during One Shot Wednesday to read a comment by Eric that is both timely and extremely witty. And when it comes to his poetry, whether it shines through his words overtly, or lingers subtly between his lines; his sense of humor is ever present. However, as you are about to discover, Eric's attention to precise writing implements humor as just one aspect of many quality features that comprise his work.
(for my wife Tammy)
You wonder why I love you so
You just can’t understand
My love for you just seems to grow
Each time I hold your hand
When you look in the mirror
You don’t like what you see
I can’t make it much clearer
You’re beautiful to me
You note each imperfection
And notice every flaw
I tell you with affection
Those things I never saw
I look a little deeper
And see the good inside
I know that you’re a keeper
That cannot be denied
You think your hair is just plain brown
And sometimes out of place
I like the way that it hangs down
When you’re kissing my face
The prettiest eyes I’ve ever see
They look so blue they twinkle
But then again sometimes they’re green
Perhaps it’s some new wrinkle?
But most of all I love the way
You always show you care
Even on the roughest day
I know that you’ll be there
The truth is plain to see indeed
It shouldn’t be too tough
Our love is everything we need
And that’s perfect enough
Earth Mother's Song
I’ve seen a broad field awash in fog,
gray-blanketed like a misplaced pond.
That same field, one dark summer morn,
lay a-twinkle, festooned with bright fireflies.
I’ve seen a great horned owl appear,
alighting atop a tall pine, majestic and wise.
Resting briefly, then silently swooping down
to disappear into the dark woods.
I’ve seen a pine martin stealing along,
dipping between the fallen birch and cedar,
popping up unexpectedly in a new spot,
red eyes glowing in my flashlight beam.
I’ve heard a tom turkey’s questioning call,
seeking to uncover this brash imposter.
A slow, hidden funeral procession
bursting forth to claim their roost.
I’ve heard lake echoes of spring frogs peeping
seeking mates among the green reeds,
the surrounding din of a million crickets creeping
on a hot August night, throbbing with life.
I’ve heard thunder roll along for miles
'til a blinding white flash strobed silhouettes
of stark, stiletto tree shadows all around
and the deafening clap froze me in place.
I’ve smelled the sweet, pine-scented winds
that blow through the north woods, thick
with undertones of green moss carpets
and ferns inexplicably bright in the shade.
I’ve smelled the musty down of a grouse
that loudly took flight at my approach,
unseen through the yellow aspen boughs,
revealing this visitor clumsy in his ream.
I’ve smelled an oncoming storm
blowing in from the west,
deepening the sense of isolation,
submersion in a still-wild place.
As a child I learned Earth Mother’s song
and it still sings deep within my heart.
I learn a new verse each time I venture
into those places where she yet dwells.
Curse you, Sylvia Plath
For making me care
To love your words
Words that nail and rail
Tearing up-down walls
Curse you, for your daddy
No one else could have been
Lady Lazarus in a bell jar
Life, a lie, alive
Hiding behind perfect Arian features
With clean, fashion-sensible shoes
You walked on big city streets
Wet and dirty and litter-strewn
Sweater warm against the cold wind
You would have blown away like a bright kite
I want to fill you on your hospital bed
Watch your cheeks flushing red
With blood the ghouls will later drain
Blood you’ve already tried to let flow
Flowers wither and wilt, unwanted
Why wasn’t I a tulip
Born that much sooner
Just to be yours for awhile
Another unloved lover
Sacrifice sung, then eaten
But you moved in other circles
Traveling about your world
A cold world I can never know
Except from what you tell me
Inscribed in indelible black
Feeling the world too deeply
Drowning in too many seas
While the desert inside
Left your soul arid as
Your words seeped out
Could I had saved you
From yourself, the world
To just be a ragdoll, limp
Would I even care then?
Or do I care because I did not?
Curse you, Sylvia, my dearest
For drawing-out knives
That break and cut skin
Bleeding as real as now
Eric also maintains 2 other separate blogs on Blogger:
Haiku blog: http://haiku-koo-koo.blogspot.com/
Photo blog: http://bifocalunivision.blogspot.com/