Tuesday, April 19, 2016

NaPoWriMo day #19

the prompt over at NaPoWriMo today was:
Today, I’d like to challenge you to write the latter kind of “how to” poem – a didactic poem that focuses on a practical skill. Hopefully, you’ll be able to weave the concrete details of the action into a compelling verse. Also, your “practical” skill could be somewhat mythological, imaginary, or funny, like “How to Capture a Mermaid” or “How to Get Your Teenager to Take Out the Garbage When He Is Supposed To.” 


At first I had some trouble.  I mean, how was I going to explain to someone how to do something, yet keep things somewhat poetic?  I think I was just being too serious about it.  So I grabbed a topic (body love/positive body image) and allowed it to take me where it went:


How to Wear Your Best Dress

First impressions are mean,
you need to leave them
angry with wanting.
Leave the lace and
full bodice at the counter;
no one craves an outdated lady.
Try silk, cashmere,
something a trifle tight.
Something that hangs
slinky-thick at the thighs,
shoulder-straps crawling the
bend of your upper arm
so every now and then
you can slide it back
in place with a quick hand-toss
and the flick of your hand,
just so they keep following.
Leave the men on main
dumbstruck beneath the
hoods of their rusty tin trucks.
Let the old ladies at
Sally's Floral stay drunk
of gaze long have your hips
have rounded the corner
and crossed the street on West.
Wear that thing like a second skin,
like the very thing you
were born to live in.
Caress the soft, unloved places
of your body in
corner-bathroom mirrors:
the dimples, the freckles
and the flab, have you will.
Lift your middle-silvered-finger
and tell the front pages
and fold-out-covers of fashion mags
they can go to hell.

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