Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Kentucky by Victoria Johnson

To my broken heart, I had to tend
So South I went 'cross the Cumberland.

Near bottle bottom two of Shiraz
For my heart I did find a new cause.

Clock ticked slow until time froze
Clouds danced 'round 'til off I dozed.

There my empty soul was filled
Where scarlet rock met rolling hills.

There was no more for me to ponder
Where way down South was just up yonder.

Writing Marathon Spring 2014 by Nicholas Sajjakulnukit

-Art Museum-
The interesting part of choosing to lurk
Is that I can observe, a whimsical perk
To speak not is hearing, without interfering
With others and how they may work

Once more I am here on a journey to write
To draw inspiration from some other sight
To wonder while perching upon a point, searching
For what the mundane may bring to light

The last time I did this we started downstairs
But it's varied somewhat, and honestly who cares?
From Bumpers to art, the difference in start
Is the opinion that someone else shares

And in its defense, I haven't been here
In this building of art of all forms
Consider it exploration of a sort
Outside of my established norms

That time of the fall and this time of the spring
I'd be interested to later compare
What difference a year and a half may bring
In the works that I see fit to share

9 journals have I, but I don't have the 1
That held my thoughts I had last time
Then again 5 have something else in store
Another purpose I've put to mind

So three in my pocket and one in my bag
My resources for holding my words
Then again organization demands separation
To avoid a word-mess too absurd

-Fireside Lounge-
If memory serves, this dull-dreary sky
Is the same exact shade that had met my eye
Though seasons shift two, I'd say that it's true
That little changes as time fly by

But of that said "little" is the view before me
A half-finished tower that I can now see
Born after that time and my last marathon rhyme
It grows here skeletal lay

The piano roars by the fireside
While the flames flicker freely with light
This place is where I had reflected upon
The shift from daytime to night

This tree before me hangs heavy with fruit
Withered and dangling forlorn
It seems strange that spring would allow such a thing
When one thinks it should be reborn
A temporal dissonance, decay within life
What I'd expect from the fall is seen now
But those piles of snow demonstrate what I know
That this scene has happened somehow

The ledge that I perched on is still over there
I recall us eavesdropping in the past
In that place of chill beside outdoor stair
It has changed little since I looked 'pon it last

So where to next in this journey of ours?
What will we choose to go see?
Of places in view, there are but a few
The Science Complex or the Library?
Or maybe the building of newly placed glass
Though the sights there are rare and few
Still for a wall filled with window's I'd expect
That some would have a hell of a view

-Library Floor 2-
Now that I think about it, the library floor
Is only to me the numbers 2 and 4
There is little reason for me to explore
1 and 3 for anything more

It's slightly at odds with where I have been
Back when I had lived back at Albion
I wandered those halls of physical text
And practically lived there within

Then again I have found that I write but don't read
My time is now spent with a muse I must feed
To relate or create, that choice for my state
Was answered by my whimsical need

-Library Floor 4-
I think the last time that I stood right here
Was when the Physics 2 final drew near
M, C and I tried to study that day
But I don't think we learned much that way

The skeleton tower looms within my sight
A collection of triangles standing upright
The cap on the ground and the crane by it's side
Shows that work is done for the night

There still a journal study that's announced all around
To look at what others have sought out and found
Or perhaps it's deception of a librarian's inception
To avoid a mess sure to astound

The study room dark and the study room light
Both gifts to the library
One with door open and one with door closed
And both empty as far as I see
Which one is preferred, the open or untouched?
Which one would you choose to exploit?
Either or neither is what I would think
I feel the atmosphere must disappoint

-Fireside Lounge, pt2-
So back to the fireside, we wait for the end
There were concerns about available seats
I took to the keys and tickled ivories
So you know, history repeats

This one and the last, two rambling tales
Of a trek around places I've been
It's an interesting exercise in seeing the world
And giving all things a new spin

Winter Writing Marathon 2012 by Nicholas Sajjakulnukit

The darker shades of light glare down
On this alcove out of the way
This assortment of chairs that often ensnares
The Sleepy each coming day

I recall once that I once used
This lone corner as a base
To handle waiting for courses frustrating
In seclusion with plentiful space

Though the TV’s off and has been so
For as long as I can recently recall
Though Bumpers is silent from this distance
Even though it wasn’t last fall

This space still remains as a contradiction of sorts
Quietly active, yet loudly serene
Much like the light-dark of the lights dark above
There are two worlds here, if you know what I mean

“Where off to next?” is the question in mind
We still have quite some time left
A prop of some sort is what we’ll report
If we find something fuzzy to accept

But still I must say that the peace here is nice
It’s a far pleasant place late at night
For the bright morning hours where card games ensue
And are heard even from out of sight
-The Fuzz
Now at Bumpers are we, though it’s rather empty
Much more quiet than I can recall
Though to be perfectly fair, the Wii used to be there
Before it was broken last Fall

I suppose that this silence is due to compliance
To schedules that call all away
After all it is late and the busy have left
For their homes and their hearths on this day

The object of focus is off to my left
That stuffed bear I’ve often pondered
Though looking quite real, I can’t help but feel
That that oddity simply must have wandered

It seems out of place for such a fierce face
To take place in one place like here
Those who come this way seek only to play
With no interest in objects near

Though more stock is held in pursuits of arms
Over pursuits of hands due to screens
It may simply be the crowd that likes pursuits loud
I really can’t say what this means

The next focus seems like a focus for dreams
By which measure is “Quirky” decided?
Because by my scale, my own self would entail
An example for which I’m provided

The next focus out here as we still persevere
(I wonder, have we lost our way?)
This that of the quirky or else something murky
From something a stranger would say

Though it seems they left upon seeing a crowd
Of silent specters watching him move
Without purpose clear, it would certainly appear
As if anywhere else would improve

I chose to perch here upon concrete wall
(I’d say it’s 6 foot or so?)
A change of perspective makes me more inflective
… I wonder next where we will go

The air’s getting colder as this day gets older
As we walk down the path further south
As words placed again feel known to my mouth
Perhaps my rhymes are made bolder

To be quite frank, I rarely come here
To dream among paper and text
I’m always headed to and fro with someplace to go
Some destination to aim for next

It’s oddly loud here with those vending machines
(And I find it odd we may consume)
And even if I knew it, I simply couldn’t do it
No food or drink is whay I assume

That’s 4 prompts explored, or maybe 5 in my case
Possibly 6, on second though
I suppose I can make seven if I were to return
With a vending machine snack I just bought
I’m back with a snack, as strange as it is
Fruit snacks make for one tasty treat
Quiero comer ahora, para un momento mas
Without further ado, Itadakimasu

It seems somewhat nostalgic to be sitting here
(I used to play jazz, don’t you know?)
Against what you’d bet, it was clarinet
At IA I used to play long ago

I can’t say I regret having shelved my old reeds
As I joked, “I lacked the hot air”
Needed to sustain the reedy refrain
And in truth, my heart wasn’t there

Still I can sometimes find some manner of thought
That encourages some alien beat
To take me by surprise when I improvise
Some alternative to tapping feet

The feeling resurges ad emerges as I kneel
In this orange-brown light darkened room
As an observer now, I am surprised to feel
The swing that still flows from that tune

In this room to reflect, I don’t know what to expect
Especially upon this contraption
It’s like a swivel chair, but the desk is also there
And the wheels also spin from all action

We chose to introduce those who make up our group
After 5 places we have all shared
I suppose our focus has waned quite a bit
For some prompt that seems unprepared

We’ve fallen back to chatter to fill this last space
15 minutes remain in this time
Soon we’ll reconvene and converge at the scene
Where I began with this rhyme

These wandering words have found their place here
As my words start to cycle, mark for mark
For some idle whim, I’ve found this walk fun
As we started, Light fades to Dark.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Apocalypse by Mario Ogu

This isn’t how I expected the world to end.
Outside there are birds, there’s a sun, there are people, but the world is ending.
I expected there to be an apocalypse. I expected the birds to die, the sun to eclipse and the people to scream.
 I expected to be running, foot after foot, on ground that was slowly giving way from under me.
I expected the sky to turn black with menace, the clouds to grow morbid grimaces looking down on our poor, deluded souls.
Deluded because we believed that things would always be like this.
Deluded because we didn’t realize all beginnings have an ending.
I expected hell to rise or Buddha to come gliding down, majestic grace too godly, too pure for our eyes that soon would no longer be ours.
 I expected fire to come down with a vengeance.
  Striking everyone, lighting everything, Hell everywhere! No more lush greens or urban grays. No more nature delights and man-made pollution. No! Everything would begin anew, the fire serving to purify us,
 To relieve us from all the fuck ups we have made and would have made without it.
I expected all of that, but none of them happened.
 It’s funny how our nightmares lie to us, leading us astray. Making us believe that the greatest fear we should have is some divine intervention. Some reckoning. Some punishment for our pleasures and avarice. But that’s not what’ll destroy us.
No, the world ended when she came to me, beautiful green eyes lit with remorse, telling me that it was over. Telling me that she couldn’t do it anymore, that we couldn’t be together. THAT’S how it happened. That’s how the sky lost its hue and the clouds became sinister
That’s how MY world ended.

Princess Betty by Jade Vickery

            For weeks I dreaded the sight of her. Throughout my training as a bakery clerk, my learning was constantly being interrupted by phrases like “No, it’s like this, don’t do it like that, or you should be taught properly.” It didn’t matter that I was new; if I was doing something wrong I was going to be corrected. It seemed like every day she was coming up to me, accusing me of something: working in her space, walking in front of her, or taking cake orders the wrong way. To her, it would’ve been perfectly fine if World War 3 broke out, but if the wrong Dora the Explorer image was put on a cake all hell would break loose.
            And if Betty was mad you’d know. Betty was a professional. She had mastered the art of anger charades. She scoffed and snorted. She threw her hands up in frustration. Bags of icing were slammed down on the counter. Cake containers were thrown. Betty made it so that she couldn’t be ignored, but God help you if you asked her what was wrong. She complained that the icing was too soft, that the icing was too hard, when someone looked at her wrong, when someone looked at her too right, when things fell, when things got up, or if someone yawned, blinked, or breathed in her general direction.

Monday, April 1, 2013

And There It Was By Amarachi Wachuku

Overheard: Someone working
And there it was. It cascaded its shade upon their wistful brows and concluded that it was daylight still. Even so, they stayed inside. And without stopping, in a never ending cycle of hopeless figuring and work piled up to their knees, they continued clicking, writing, slamming, conversing, debating, yelling waiting for it all to end. Everyone seemed to do this never ending cycle of work. Even when their tired eyes begged for sleep. Even when their hands were tense and shaking from clicking away, or writing away. Even when their hearts ached for something more, something better outside.  Even so, there they sat still flapping their tongues, tensing their bodies over lit screens, and rubbing their eyes, that just kept staring on.  For their day was just too long. But it really wasn’t. The day was at its’ end, and the sunshine seemed to dim with every moment.  And no one seemed to mind, to care, or to stop and dream for even a moment as the sunlight began to vanish behind thick clouds.
But what was wrong with just sitting still and listening for the quiet hum of activity that filled the place? Couldn’t they feel the energy, the vibrancy, that overtook the passion of work?  So much so, that all one could do was sit still and try to think, breathe, and feel the art work of warmth that came from the window. Glass shimmering like never before, cascading shadows like it was almost done reaching its peak below the horizon, saying: “The day is done.”  It kept saying, “Go home all you work, go home all you wish and dream.  Life is more than work. Play and seek your future when the day is young.”
But no one heard this message. None at all. None, except for him. In the middle of the chaos, there he sat on the ground, leaning his head back on the wall; arms crossed and dignified staring out into the glass picture of the world. And there I joined him. Sitting on the other side of the world it seemed, for he and I were in different places. Far from work, from play we sat staring, watching the sun dip behind more shadows. And there we sat waiting and dreaming. Waiting and dreaming. Waiting for our life to start. 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Words and Pictures by Susanna Taylor

Drawing is writing without words. To take a single frozen image and ask it to declare a lifetime, a memory, a moment—whoever said a picture is worth a thousand words was insane. Pictures are not meant to convey words—that’s what words are for. Pictures, drawings, sculptures are meant to reflect emotions, thoughts, that which is wordless and yet still beautiful. Art is that which stirs the soul and conquers the heart. Can words do this? Absolutely. But there is something that an image gives that words cannot, how the tilt of the head, the curve of the lips, the grace of a stance can twist an image so easily from that of a pair of lovers to would-be killers. A scene, a smile, how a leaf falls from a tree…words can try to reflect these images, but a picture takes that challenge in stride and instead strives to find depth in what many call mere whimsy.
What words can accomplish alone pales when words and images create a beautiful cohesion that they could not hope to accomplish alone. What would a book be like with just pictures? What would a gallery be like with just words? We seek always to find answers—the challenge is to find the story behind an unlabeled drawing, to draw the art of a glorious phrase.

“The good writers touch life often. The mediocre ones run a quick hand over her. The bad ones rape her and leave her to the flies.”
Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury