Saturday, October 17, 2009

Everything Gypsy Week

Mind Gypsies

For those who can’t leave,
                       make most of the now.
For those who can’t stay,
                   leave something behind
 (the heart of the womb).
We’re wanderers all,
              tho’ never left home.

The stories we weave
              of  where and of how
we yearn for the day
         as no longer blind.
Depart this dark tomb.
You'll slip and you'll fall....
      continue to roam.

Life’s too short reprieve
                    'gainst wind and the plow…
the struggle, the play
         of passion and mind,
of joy and of doom
encased in a wall
           or words in some tome.

Hearts worn on the sleeve
    yet bound by a vow
n’er finding the way
    ev'n with our own kind
in very same room.
Immune to their call,
more hills left to comb

more hills left to comb.

~~ Annie Wyndham


Next week will be Everything Gypsy Week here on this blog (blogging by theme.  I may soon tire of it but thought it a good practice to muscle up on one's focusing skills).  The above poem was a personal poetic assignment employing that theme:

The Rules:

1.  Write a poem about people who travel mentally, the way gypsies do physically.

2.  Make the last word of each line a single syllable that incorporates the sounds of the vowels "ay", "ee" and "oh" --but leave out the "eye" and the "you".  (Not to make this too hard, you can substitute "oo" for "you", if you want).

3.  Compose four stanzas of seven lines each and a fifth stanza consisting of a single line, in which all 27 lines must contain exactly five syllables each.

4.  The last word of each line in the first stanza must rhyme with the last word of each line in each succeeding  stanza.

5.  Finally, jumble the words and condense into a 7-line mini-text 'encouragement', if you will, suitable for posting on city buses or as a subway ad, letting bored office workers, numbed number crunchers and stressed-out deadline rushers know that it's okay to jump the mental Gypsy Express from time to time, just let go, and soar for a bit, leave behind the soreness of the is, and dance to the what could be.

Condensed Version:

     Encased, worn, bound?
     Yearn to wander?
     Leave now, dark heart.
     You'll slip, fall.
     Continue to roam!
     Hills left to comb!

     Weave stories...

Analyzing the subconscious message to the mind of the author:

Leave now. ( "Sleeve" vow.) Weave how?!  Reprieve: Plow.
Stay behind, dayblind?  Play Mind!  Way ... kind.
Womb=tomb.  Room=Doom.
All wall.  Fall.  Call!
Home. Comb tome. Roam!

What absolute gobbledegook! What am I trying to tell me, ha ha! Okay, think of it as a code. Unravel it. Make sense of it. The words suggest (if it is, indeed, a message) to:

--Eschew inertia.  Nevermind the naysayers.  Tell your stories. There is value in hard work. (Work, my dear. Not word gameplay.)
--Don't stay stuck.  Imagine!  It'll lead to something interesting, and may not be as difficult as you suppose.
--Climb out and breathe.  Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
--There's a risk.  You may crash.  Ask for help sometimes.
--Where to look for the answer: Do what you love. Words to the rescue! Words that inspire, catch your soul on fire, bring forth your desire, let you see something higher, expose the dark liar, lift you out from the mire (or plunge you into the pyre), words of which you never tire, electrify you like a wire, make you soar like a flyer.

Truth Patrol Disclaimer:  Okay, somebody's eventually gonna figure this out, so I might as well confess.  I made up the rules after I wrote the poem and saw certain similarities.  I tweaked n'er, ev'n, an 'gainst to make what was originally a six-syllable line fit the five-syllable-per-line subsequently imposed rule.  I've never seen the word "against" written as "gainst".  Ever.  Going gainst the rules of grammar will bring out the Grammar Police.  However, am confident the very few readers of this blog will not mind, as they know by now my penchant for word play, even when I perhaps should really be focusing on something else.

As for the mini analysis, stop turning over in your grave, Freud.  The sleeve does not indicate a desire to cover up anything, bound doesn't mean I suffer from constipation, and dark heart doesn't mean I harbor sinister thoughts.  (Although comb tome is remarkably on target in that it captures the essence of what we editors recognize as the curse-of-the-non-sleeping-eye re: printed texts (and which, paradoxically sometimes fails to catch our own typos or faux paws)(all puns intended, whether they actually work or not).

Enough!!  :)

Check out tomorrow's blog posting to meet a real gypsy, a new Internet acquaintance, a truly delightful discovery--an itinerant artist across the pond who follows her heart and dreams, writing and painting on the road.

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