Post series: Advent: Poem: Why is all this going on?

Why is all this going on?

To an outside observer,
someone who had no previous knowledge,
it would all seem,
a bit absurd.

are putting fake trees in their houses.

Thousands of little light bulbs,
are being strung outside.

People are shopping everywhere.

Movies are playing
with singing snowmen.

There’s talk of reindeer
flying in the sky.

Why is all this going on?

What is all this about?

Why are millions and millions
of seemingly rational people
doing all of this?

There must be a reason.

There must be something behind it.

There must be something
with meaning
and importance
and significance.

This all can’t be
just some long festival.

There has to be a reason for all of this.

There has to be an answer to the question.

There has to be a reason,
why all of this,
is going on.


P. S. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving. Because of the holiday, there will not be a new post on the blog November 28, 2019 – December 1, 2019.  The next new post will be on December 2, 2019.

Post Series: Advent: two pomegranates

two pomegranate

Above is an artwork of two pomegranates.  It is a photograph that was cropped, made black and white, and altered some.

The artwork shows two different sized pomegranates.  One is large and one is small.  This idea can be related to Christmas gifts and their perceived value.

Some gifts are perceived to have a large value, and other gifts a small value.  This perception can affect the person giving the gift and the person receiving the gift.

A poet could write about the contrast between gifts with a high perceived value and those with a low perceived value.  They could write about how the perception is created, how the gifts are given, how they are received, and if the perception is correct and what that means.

Here is an example poem:

in the house full of food
a fruitcake was delivered
and received
with the reception
that might be expected

in a moment
of thoughtless re-gifting
the fruitcake was brought
to one whose hunger was hidden
and it was received
with silent joy

Post Series: Advent: Artwork to inspire poetry: twelve acorns

twelve days

Above is an artwork of twelve acorns.  It is a photograph that was made black and white.

The twelve acorns represent the twelve days of Christmas.  Each acorn could potentially become a tree, symbolizing the potential of the twelve days.  The acorns are stacked in a Christmas tree type shape.

The artwork can inspire poetry.  Here is a poem inspired by it:

there can often be
great potential
in the little things

Post Series: Advent: Bilingual Poem: This year, do something different

This year,
do something different.

Don’t get,
a plastic tree,
that looks alive.

Don’t get,
a real tree,
that was alive.

a living tree,
that is alive.


Este año,
hace algo distinto.

No obtiene,
un árbol de plástico,
que parece vivo.

No obtiene,
un árbol legítimo,
que estado vivo.

un árbol que vive,
que es vivo.

Post Series: Advent: Experimental Poetry Form: Advent

Today’s experimental poetry form is called Advent.  It contains one stanza.  It is an acrostic form of the word Advent.  In the form, there are 40 syllables (the number of days in Advent).  The first through the fourth line have eight syllables each.  The fifth and sixth lines have four syllables each.  The lines are in different Christmas colors.  The lines starting with A and V are colored red, the lines starting with D and E are colored green.  The N line is silver.  The T line is gold.  Additionally, there is a rhyming pattern.  The A and V lines rhyme, the D and E lines rhyme, and the N and T lines rhyme.  Here is a summary of the form:

A 8 Red R1
D 8 Green R2
V 8 Red R1
E 8 Green R2
N 4 Silver R3
T 4 Gold R3

Here is an example poem in the form:

Another season has now come.
Doing many things from a list.
Very quickly it covers some,
enveloping like a strange mist.
No, tasks aren’t why
this time comes by.

Post Series: Advent: Artwork to inspire poetry: wrapped Christmas present

wrapped Christmas present

Above is an artwork of a wrapped Christmas present.  It was done in a simple design using the traditional Christmas colors of red and green.  The artwork can inspire poetry.  Here is a poem inspired by it:

a gift in a box
can change someone’s life
for the better
in a dramatic way

as you shop this season
look for these

if you can’t find one though
then forgo the box
and do for another
and help them in ways
that can’t be wrapped

Post Series: Advent: Poem with an explanation: Political Correctness

Even if others
deem it politically incorrect,
say, “Merry Christmas”.

This poem looks at the notion of “Happy Holidays” vs. “Merry Christmas” and takes a position.  The idea of the poem is presented clearly: Even if others deem it politically incorrect, say, “Merry Christmas”.  The poem says to take a stand for a belief even if others disagree.

Post Series: Advent: Poetry topic idea: Christmas symbols

Throughout Advent and through the Christmas season you are likely to encounter a number of Christmas symbols.  This includes things like stars, wreaths, Christmas trees, ornaments, candy canes, presents, nutcrackers, and so forth.

You could explore these different symbols in poetry.  You could take some time to learn about their history, their original meanings, their current meanings, how their meanings have changed over time, and how Christian symbolism can be applied to them.

You could either pick one topic such as stars, and explore it in depth, or you could explore a number of different topics in one poem.

This exercise could be a good learning experience about Christmas symbols and it could help you to explain them to others.  It could also be a good exercise to learn about and apply Christian symbolism to the different symbols, both those that started with them, and those that had them applied later.

Here is an example poem looking at stars:

As you place the star,
atop the tree,
and plug the plug,
turn down the lights,
and watch it shine,
think back,
to that one star,
that brought men from the east,
hundreds or thousands of miles,
in search of someone,
they had never met,
whose name they did not know,
whose story they had not heard.

Think about,
how they may have seemed,
to those who knew them.

How strange it must have seemed,
to hear them say,
they were following a light,
to an unknown place.

Think about the journey they took,
the hardships they encountered,
and the faith the must have had.

Think about what they left,
what they risked,
and who they found.

As you look at the star,
atop your tree,
think back,
to that one star,
and see it,
in a new light.

Post series: Advent: Poem: This first day

Today is the first day of Advent.  From now through Christmas Eve there will be a series of posts related to Advent.  Today’s post is a poem called This first day.

This first day

did not go as planned

but a lesson was learned

and hopefully two.

A dose

of humility

was served,

as pride was on the floor.

This first day

through it all

was a good day.

Poetry essay: Rhyming poetry can be serious poetry

Sometimes rhyming poetry can be viewed as lacking seriousness.

For example, poems for children sometimes rhyme.  Advertising jingles can rhyme.  Simple poetry forms can rhyme.  Also, old poetry forms, like sonnets, can rhyme.

Additionally, rhyming poetry, with its predictable sounds, might not seem appropriate for certain subjects.

Rhyming though doesn’t have to be viewed this way.  Rhyming poetry can be serious poetry.  Here are some ways that you can make your rhyming poetry serious.

First, you can focus on having a serious subject matter.  Although serious subject matters are often viewed synonymously with negative subject matters, it does not have to be so.  Something can be serious and positive.  An example might be the first person of a certain category to achieve something.

Second, you can focus on complex rhyming patterns.  Basic rhyming patterns are things like ABAB or ABAC or ABCB.  You can focus on patterns that are more complex.  More complex patterns include more rhymes, less adherence to stanzas, and greater variation.

Third, you can look for non-traditional rhyming words.  By finding words that are unexpected, you can add a different sound to your poetry.

Fourth, you can write in a serious tone.  A serious tone can have rhymes.  The rhymes can blend with the tone and enhance it.

Fifth, you can add other poetry elements to your poem to give the look of an unstructured experimental poetry form.  These elements might include: stanzas of different lengths, line breaks, line indentions without a pattern, single word lines, and lack of sentence structure.  A poem written in this way, though rhyming, can appear more serious.

Sixth, you can add elements of overtness to your poem.  If you write about a serious subject, in a serious way, and don’t cover it too heavily with metaphor, the seriousness can come through and balance with the rhyming.

Seventh, you can use literary elements to add a serious tone to your poem.

Here is an example poem that is serious and also contains rhyme.  The pattern is: ABCDEAFCAE.

You say the words with such ease
like you’re saying there’s something wrong with an engine.
But here, in this chair,
the engine runs.
It’s not in some car in some lot.
These are the pistons that seize.
But you’re detached.
You’ve been taught not to care.
It’s never you who cries on your knees.
Your heart beats like it’s been taught.