Welcome to National Poetry Month!
I'm baaack! I can't resist the 30/30 challenge, and it seems like the perfect time to return to my blog and keep a record of my rough drafts. My really rough drafts. Let's see if I can do 30/30 this year, 2021. Before, a quick update from the KatieSphere.
So, I left off at the end of April 2020, and I was in a bit of a funk. I think the whole world was in a bit of a funk, honestly, with COVID-19 cases ramping up and the promise of reopening. Personally, I'd felt the rug had been tugged out from under my feet as well.
Has much changed in the past year? Not really. We're still in pandemia. I've got my COVID-19 vaccine. I'm still teaching from home. I'm weary of the outside world as it tries to reopen again.
Another perfect season for poetry? I'd say so. Here's my first NAPO, inspired by a prompt from the napowrimo.net site and the writing of Monica de la Torre, whom I've been reading and thinking about lately:
What If All the Birds Refused to Migrate?
What if all the birds refused to migrate
One day, decided all the world should curve
For them and not the other way around?
That they were tired of the rushing every season,
Of living beak to beak, the season’s ability
To feed them diminishing each year?
Tired of being devoured by feral cats in cities
Or searching endlessly for crowns of trees
To build their nests amongst the urban sprawl?
Sick of eating all the insects hatching in the south,
An endless task of cleaning up, like a mother
With a broom, the kitchen floor, and cheerios.
Fed up with bullets clipping wings
During dove season, of losing so much,
A mate, a child, a sister, a mother
Then a dule. Exhausted from the migrations,
of moving, changing with the world, as climate changes
And the rushing to adapt, to make it work,
Oh God, one more disaster coming at us
Like a man on the sidewalk, another man
Expecting me to move aside. What if a bird decides
She won’t fly away for once, won’t let her feathers
Be ruffled by the changes in the wind?
What if all the birds collectively decided
This together, to stay put, to stare
Their predators in the eye in flocks,
Demand the wind cater to their appetites
For once, remain in bed on Sunday afternoons
Instead of building nests or tending eggs or
Planning for the next move survival deems
They have to make or else they’ll die,
Be eaten, starve, or freeze. My God,
Our ecosystem would collapse
Like an economy without the women
Who give it wings to fly.
The idea behind this poem is comparing birds, collectively, to women. How we're expected to bend to the whims of the world, accommodate and make space for masculinity to have its way and sway, and also how capitalism functions to not really empower women but exhaust us. I wonder if the birds feel that way, too, with climate change and their migrations becoming more treacherous every year? That's the impulse, the seed, or maybe the egg if you will, of this poem. I'm really into the concept of ecofeminism lately.
I actually think I might revise this into a villanelle? What a refrain: what if all the birds refused to migrate? That's my idea for later!