Thursday, April 10, 2014

30 Poets/Day 10 - Bruce Lansky and Carmen T. Bernier-Grand

One third of the way through the month already? I wish April would last forever! It won't, though, but at least it lasts long enough for me to share poetry from Bruce Lansky and Carmen T. Bernier-Grand - one going for the funny and one non-fiction biography (once again showing the range of poetry!).

Rules for Spot
Bruce Lansky

Don't run after cars
when they drive down our street.
Don't leave doggy paw marks
on fresh-poured concrete.

Don't bark at the mail man;
the poor man will pout.
Don't bite bible salesmen;
they might cuss you out.

Don't drink from the toilet,
your breath won't smell great.
And mom won't be thrilled when
you eat off her plate.

Don't whine late at night
so I'll open the door.
If I'm sleeping, don't wake me;
Just "go" on the floor.

I wrote down these rules,
which I hoped would be followed.
Spot thought it was homework.
So, he chewed it and swallowed.

©2009 Bruce Lansky. All rights reserved.
(Click here to see the original post and comments)

The following poem comes from Alicia Alonso: Prima Ballerina Assoluta, a biography due out in 2011, written by Carmen Bernier-Grand and being illustrated by Raúl Colón. Cuban ballerina Alicia Alonso is blindfolded in the poem because she had just surgery for detached retinas. At that moment, doctors thought she wouldn’t be able to dance again. But she danced until she was seventy-five.

Dancing Fingers
Carmen T. Bernier-Grand

Blindfolded Alicia listens to the music of Giselle.
Her fingers are her feet, the bed sheet the stage.
“I see the theater curtain open. I absolutely see it.”
            Giselle is in love with another peasant, Loys.
Alicia’s fingers jump high—Giselle’s feet.
            Giselle learns that Loys is Prince Albrecht in disguise.
            As a peasant she cannot marry him. She becomes insane.
Alicia’s fingers move stiffly, horribly distorted.
            The earth shakes the day Giselle dies.
            That evening she becomes a Willi,
            a female spirit whose love is unfulfilled.
Alicia’s fingers jump high, but land silently as spirit feet.
            In the cold dawn the Willis rise from their graves
            to force Albrecht to dance until he dies of exhaustion.
Alicia’s fingers float softly.
            She doesn’t let the Willis touch him.
            Giselle’s devotion saves Albrecht from Death.
The golden damask curtain closes.
The theater almost falls with applause.
Alicia’s fingers take a bow.

© Carmen T. Bernier-Grand. All rights reserved.
(Click here to see the original post and comments)

Yesterday featured poetry from Joyce Sidman and Alan Katz. Tomorrow... Avis Harley and Charles Waters.

Please click here for more information on this year's 30 Poets/30 Days, including how to follow along.

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