Thursday, 27 January 2011

Featured Poet: Eric Alder, winner of humorous poetry contest

One Stop Spotlights Eric "Bubba" Alder
 

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. M
any 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.


Eric "Bubba" Alder
About Eric (in his words)....

"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.

Following my favorite poem of his that was dedicated to his wife (Perfect Enough), Eric shares with us both his personal favorite (Earth Mother's Song) & his poem that received the most comments (Curse You, Sylvia Plath).


**********

Perfect Enough
(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

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
Sharp-tongued words
That break and cut skin

Bleeding as real as now


 ****************
Check Out Eric Alder's main blog: Bubba's Place

Eric also maintains 2 other separate blogs on Blogger:
Haiku blog: http://haiku-koo-koo.blogspot.com/
Photo blog: http://bifocalunivision.blogspot.com/


*Come watch the Video Clip of Eric's winning poem, as performed by the various characters of Richard North over at The Arts Web Show

Cheers,
dustus

17 comments:

Yvonne Osborne said...

congrats to you, Eric, on this tribute. I like "Curse You, Sylvia Plath". In fact, I think it's my personal favorite of yours. The Bell Jar was wonderful. Her words did nail and rail, a cursed genius.

signed...bkm said...

Yes, Congrats to you Eric...well deserved and I love all you chosen write...but your Sylvia Plath can be felt into the soul....that is an incredible write...thank you for all you do in reading and commenting on others work...and for your unending humor....bkm

Mama Zen said...

I really enjoy Eric's work. Great spotlight!

flaubert said...

Congrats Eric! I love your writing.
I remember when you posted the "Curse You, Sylvia Path". Excellent poem.
Pamela

Brian Miller said...

woot eric is a great writer...congrats man...now...

Go and boil your bottoms, you sons of silly persons!

ha, eric will understand....

Beachanny said...

I love your poems and thanks Dustus for this spotlight and allowing me to learn more about Eric. Eric, you always have such cogent comments on my work. I will look at your submissions with more insight now. Thank you so much. I loved all the poems included here. Gay @beachanny

Eric 'Bubba' Alder said...

Thank you for the nice comments (previous and any to come) and thank you to One Stop Poetry for featuring my work.

(You like me! You really like me!)

I'm glad to know that people enjoy my words, both in my poetry/prose and in my comments.

(Autograph anyone? LOL!)


P.S. to Brian: "Go away or I shall taunt you a second time!"

Brian Miller said...

eric,

It's just like those miserable psalms, always so depressing. Now knock it off!

ha

kkrige said...

I read "Curse You..." when you featured it on your blog and commented then, but now I have to say that your wife is a pretty lucky lady to have such a beautiful poem as "perfect enough" written for her as well. Great feature One stop.

Pete Marshall said...

way to go eric...what i love about this man who is so supportive of so many poets is the way he encourages...i see eric everywhere...and as adam says there is so often a thought through witty comment but beneath that is a man that actually knows his stuff..eric is a champion...but i know he will hate this and wish i had added something silly instead...cheers and a great spotlight...pete

Heather Grace Stewart said...

Congrats Eric - you most definitely shone with that Plath poem, but you also always make me laugh and brighten my days with your comments--so thanks for that. Great spotlight!

Marian said...

go eric! wonderful and well deserved, you're my hero!
now don't go all sally field on us, you know you have talent, friend.

Rene/ Not The Rockefellers said...

Eric, congratulations!
Thank you so much for sharing with us
your humour, your beautiful writing and some of the wittiest comments on the web.

kathew said...

Eric- Congratulations on this epic award- my favorite is the poem for your wife. No one could write a better tribute- Bravissimo!

Shewriting said...

yea, for eric! A great guy, poet, writer, and a impressive photographer as well! I think his sense of humor shines through most of his work. Eric, I think you are the only person whose comments I have commented on (more than once) as I visit other blogs - like adam said - because they are often timely and witty. great to see you spotlighted here today. Thanks to Adam!

Hope said...

congrats Eric

brilliant poetry

all are a pleasure to read
love your style and
sense of humor

Eric 'Bubba' Alder said...

All these wonderful comments... so nice. I'm very touched. Thanks again, everybody. Truly.