Poem with an explanation: drought and rain

each day plant leaves wilt
soil turns from grains to stone
the monsoon arrives

 

This poem is about a common occurrence in people’s lives.  It describes a situation where first a person has nothing to do and then all of a sudden has too much to do.  It is about imbalance.

In the poem, the first two lines describe drought conditions.  The leaves are wilting from lack of water.  The soil is hardening under the bright sun.

These ideas are a metaphor for a person who to some degree is deteriorating because they have nothing to do.  An example of this might be a person who becomes unemployed.  As time goes on, it is possible the person’s condition might worsen.  They might change their sleep habits, their hygiene habits, and their daily routine.  They might do less and less as there seems to be nothing to do.  They might lose their motivation.

The last line of the poem describes a sudden overwhelming change.  In the poem the conditions change from a drought to a monsoon.  The monsoon will be long lasting.  The monsoon will cause flooding.  The monsoon will overwhelm.

This idea is a metaphor for a person all of a sudden having too much to do.  Using the example of the unemployed person, an example situation might be the person all of a sudden getting three part-time jobs.  The person instantly becomes busy.  They have a hard time juggling things.  They have a hard time keeping track of things.

These ideas describe imbalance.  Continuing the example, had the person had two part-time jobs or one full time job the entire time, they would have been in a state of balance.  They wouldn’t have had too little to do or too much.  They wouldn’t have experienced any sudden change.

This poem is a haiku.  It is written in the 5-7-5 style.  The first two lines describe one situation and the last line describes a change in the situation.  It uses nature as a metaphor for a human experience.

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Poetry topic idea: drought

Today’s poetry topic idea is drought.  Drought can generally be used in two ways in poetry: literally and figuratively.

The literal use of drought would mean to describe a lengthy period of time without significant rainfall.  In writing about drought this way, a poet could touch on a number of ideas.  Some of them include:

  • dryness
  • water rationing
  • heat
  • the impact on agriculture
  • the impact on plants more generally
  • waiting for respite
  • wildfires
  • water levels in lakes and rivers

Drought metaphorically could be used to be describe a lengthy period of time without something other than rain.  There are a number of ideas this could be applied to.  Some include a drought in:

  • business
  • communication of some sort
  • dating
  • visitors
  • offers of some kind

Here is a poem using the idea of drought:

Lying on the concrete,
looking up,
as the sun beats down,
and waiting,
to hear the sound,
of the phone to ring.

Artwork to inspire poetry: black and white strawberry

black and white strawberry

Above is a black and white artwork of a strawberry.  It can inspire poetry.  Here are some ideas.  A poet could write about:

  • The idea of the loss of color. As this strawberry is presented without its usual colors of red, green, and so forth, a poet could write about someone or something losing color.  They could write about furniture that has faded.  They could write about a person so scared they lost the color in their face.  They could apply the idea symbolically, and write about a thing or person losing something fundamental to it or themselves.
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  • A person not wanting to be noticed. This strawberry has a muted appearance.  It does not stand out as much as a colorful strawberry would.  A poet could apply this idea to people.  They could write about a person who does not want to be noticed.  An example might be a person at a performance who hopes they don’t get called up on stage.
  •  

  • A person not being noticed. As a corollary to the idea above, a poet could write about a person who isn’t noticed.  An example might be a person at a party who no one talks to (although not because they don’t like the person, but rather, because they don’t notice them).

 

Here is an example poem:

The leaves were green,
but then they changed,
first red,
then yellow,
then brown.
And then one day,
in the wind,
they blew away,
and the tree was bare.
The drought was in,
its hundredth day.