Pain and Harm
Ten years ago an unrepentant alcoholic mother
emotionally deserted her three daughters.
Two years ago, she physically lost one of those girls
to a train which was unable to stop
after the daughter’s sudden sacrificial lunge
— leaving life to flee her pains.
Today that mother decided to end her life in the same way
but failed, and was dragged a bloody mile
to end up in a local cold ICU. Where now
her remaining children and nieces must decide
if they really care or just hate her more.
— by Sabio Lantz, May 2015
Prompt: Bryan Ens, at d’Verse Poets, asked us to:
Write a poem in any form that you choose (and yes, I will accept free verse as a form) – but after your poem, include a brief note on your form, and why you chose that form for your piece. How does meter and rhyme (or lack thereof) affect the meaning of your piece? If you used alliteration, onomatopoeia, or some other poetic device, why?
Answer to Prompt: I love using forms in poetry — here is an index to such poems of mine. I use form to help inspire ideas and poetry from my mind when it is dry. But when I have something very concrete to say, I like free verse. And in particular, a very narrative sort of free verse. What makes narrative free verse different than a flash essay, not much — seeking to define poetry at the edges of the familiar is a doomed undertaking. See my post on “Poetry is”.
But when I compose narrative free verse, I read my lines over and over. I listen to the prosody — constantly adjusting and changing.
My diagram to the right shows, “prosody” is very important in language — especially in poetry. Rhyme and rhythm, for me, would have distracted from the story in my poem and a short essay would have lacked in feeling. Thus my choice.
I wrote this poem last week. It is a true story that happened to one of my work colleagues that day.