Every Tuesday night before we attend the open mic at the Annex, a small group of us gather to workshop another person’s poem and use a prompt to try and spark another collection of words out of us. Sometimes we don’t have a poem to workshop and Josh Ballard will get us to discuss some issue concerning poetry techniques or some dilemma frustrating the spoken word and writing world that we live in….This week we talked about the devices we use in our poems when writing them….
Many of the basic ones were addressed, plot, personification, allegory, setting, and of course form. The form of our poems are mostly free verse, but occasionally you have someone try to write a villanelle – haikus are very popular with our group – but beyond all that Josh talked about keeping the form and tweeking them just a lil bit and briefly mentioned Patricia Smith’s collection of sonnets that she has….
That made me go back and search for some of her sonnets today as I sat in work looking for something to do besides work and I found Patricia’s ‘crown’ of sonnets entitled Motown Crown. In case you fail to notice you’ll see its a collection of 15 sonnets the first line of each one using the last line of the previous one….then for the epic ending the 15th sonnet uses all 14 of the previous lines….$5,000 for the next writer who can do that successfully…..go
Motown Crown by Patricia Smith