Here’s to nothing!
Call it an occupational hazard. I see a photo of snow-covered swings, seats hanging so low that the long length of chain is visible, and immediately, I think of Milton’s quote, especially since there are two swings…”They” also serve makes perfect sense in terms of the winter warrior suspended animation photo.
I’m in love with the suspended animation photo– and the quote, and so when I read of Michelle’s DOM challenge about poeming nothing, I thought that this week, this phot0-poem “had to be” my offering.
Milton’s words speak to me of the power of restrained, sacrificial inaction—of the strength, humility, and courage that there oftentimes is in restraining the urge, the tendency to “do something”—even if it’s seemingly counterproductive not to do anything–“just” to do nothing.
As someone who likes to hedge her bets, just in case the Milton photo-poem doesn’t cut it, I’ve used the same photo prompt (which I’ve already noted that I love) and I’ve written a five-word poem “all my own.”
As someone for whom patience is a constant struggle—since birth, and who has happy memories of sunny Hawaii “hang loose” mentality, this photo-poem, if you don’t mind my sharing it, contains a lot of much-needed self-talk.
Thank you very much for taking time to read the poems…
Now, the ball’s in your court, if you will.
Which of the two poems do you recommend I share as my DOM (poem about nothing) submission?
Thanks for your critique. I really appreciate your feedback and input!
…God bless you!
I’ll go with the second one – love the repetition of the h’s: happening, hang, and hold; the opposition in the phrases: hang loose and hold tight (how does one do both?); and then the single word at the bottom – patience!
Thank you so very much for taking time to read the poems and to lend your reflective support for second one. God bless you and thank you for sharing so many details in going for the second one. Thanks again so very much!
I like the second one, too. They are “all” your words, and fit the photo beautifully.
Thought I had responded hours ago, and since I’ve been pondering what we both said about “my words,” I just came back to add another reply-admission, only to discover I didn’t reply in the first place. Sorry about that! …Anyway, first, thank you very much for your time given to reading and responding to the photo-poems. Here’s what I realized. Though I took ownership of the second one, “hang loose” and “hold tight” are no more (or less, if I understand you correctly) my words than are the Milton quote! What was I thinking?…Thanks for helping me re-think! And thanks for your affirmation of the photo-poem connection. God bless you!
I am going to say the second. The first works well with the image, but I like the “hang loose” and “hold tight” – which is exactly what you do when you swing…and the patience is definitely what you need to have with snow-covered swings and life!
Thank you so very much for taking time to read the poems and to voice your preference, complete with explanations! I am very grateful! God bless you!
I’m not sure I’m allowed a vote, but in case I am, my favorite is the second one as well. It holds together beautifully, I like the sense of urgency in having to be patient, and it also comes across as more personal. Having said that, I would be pleased to include whichever one you decide upon, cb. Thanks for joining in!
Your vote means a great deal to me! Thank you for taking time to read both poems and to express your preference. Thank you, too, as always, for sharing the particulars that I like to think are helping me (or at least motivating me!) to become a more mature, seasoned “poet.” I remain indebted for your continued welcoming and encouragement. It is my blessing to participate! Thank you!…We’ll see how this plays out, and one of the two of these poems will be in your inbox. (I realize that I meant to give an option of “which, if either,” but I guess subliminally, I really would like one to be submitted:) If there’s some improvement I need to make toward that end, please know I always am happy to do that! Thanks again! God bless you!
I am going to buck the tide and say how charming I find the first one! It’s the unexpectedness of it. Of course, the second one has its own charm 🙂 You can’t go wrong.
Thank you! I appreciate your validation! God bless you for taking time to read both poems and to share your independent “findings.” Your kind words have left me smiling! Every blessing! I so love that quote of Milton’s….Unexpected or not, I bet it will enter another poem..(Just “warning.”) Thank you again and again!
The first is beautiful too – but the ownership of the second tips it over. PLUS – I love the visual connectedness of the ‘H’ shaped swings and all those ‘H’ words. (Btw, I would never have guessed they were swings, if you hadn’t said.)
Thank you for your generous sharing; no matter how many times I’ve seen those blessed swings and written different kinds of photo-poems, only two of which I’ve shared, you’ve opened my eyes to something I’ve never seen! In fact, I had to go back to look at the photo to see what you saw. Yes! You are correct! The swings are “H” shaped. (Wish I could take credit and profess that the H-shape gave rise to the “H’ words…As much as I consciously can’t, who knows! Maybe that’s why, among all the words I played with, I sensed that the “H” words fit best. What a gift that comment is to me…And, then, I have to say that I’m wondering what those “things” appeared to be. I do believe that they really are swings…Yes! I do believe that they were so identified in the photo information. Whew! Words and photos are so amazing in their power to evoke different connotations. I am so grateful for your sharing. Thanks, and God bless you! .
I really liked the second one – I thought the poem and the picture just fit together so well, and there was a a clean simplicity to it.
Thank you for taking time to read both poems, especially considering your hostessing responsibilities today! I appreciate very much your “weighing in.” Thank you, too, for your kind appraisal. I had another version of a poem for 2 voices, but I opted for “cleaner.” Glad you liked that! I can’t write the highly sophisticated poems that others write; I’m very grateful that there’s a place and an acceptance of my simple. God bless you!
Love the photo and the second poem resonates with me. Oddly enough I was just out taking pictures of snowy recess equipment (before students arrived) earlier this week. I liked the feeling of anticipation, knowing little hands and feet would be transforming the scene later that day. I hadn’t sparked from the photo to poetry, though. Nice job!
Thank you so very much for taking time to read the poems and to share your reactions. In one of my “noodling” versions, I did a poem for two voices, and the swings anticipated their being back in action, squeals and squeaks, and pumps and pushes. I had a lot of fun with that photo. If you combine your snowy recess equipment with a poem, I would love to read it! Meanwhile, thank you for your kind compliment. I’m so glad the second poem resonated with you. God bless you!
I am agreeing the second one fits the “Nothing” theme especially since that is what I am doing this weekend with the storm raging outside. I hang loose, hold tight, nothing from my list of weekend accomplishments can happen when the county is advised to stay inside. Nice job with the two different versions.
Thank you for your kind words! And thank you taking time to read the two versions and to express the reasons for your preference–even if I wish the circumstances for your resonance with the second one were different! Hope all is well…Stay safe! God bless you! …p.s. Plenty of good “material” for your Winter gallery is abounding!
Just wanted to tell you that I downloaded Life of the Beloved after reading your comment. Thank you very much. It is powerful stuff.
What a blessed surprise! Thank you for taking time to let me know! I’m very honored that you would explore the book that I commented about, and VERY GLAD that you have found the book to be powerful! I have to say that although I “always knew” I was loved, I didn’t know I was the beloved until I read that book! If the author’s words resonate with you, I can say that I went on from that book to read others of his that I found compelling! Thanks again; God bless you in your life as His beloved!