If You Build It

It’s the last day of a very successful National Poetry Writing Month, and I greatly appreciate everyone who has read (and interacted!) with my posts: I feel like, just maybe, I have enough momentum to keep this “regular update” thing going! Stick around and I suppose we’ll see.

Meanwhile, my thirtieth entry for April follows NaPo’s prompt “to write a palinode – a poem in which you retract a view or sentiment expressed in an earlier poem.” I reread many of my posts and decided to revisit a triolet from the month’s halfway point, copied below for convenience:


What point is there in trying to pretend
that walls of straw are better made than stone?
To build and rebuild houses without end,
what point is there? In trying to pretend
that wooden limbs could shelter and defend,
we mourn our loss where stronger winds have blown;
What point is there in trying to pretend
that walls of straw are better made than stone?


Whatever metaphorical whirlwind I was caught up in for that post, another triolet seemed most appropriate for the retraction/ rebuttal :


I’ve every faith in able builders’ hands,
no matter what materials they wield,
for straw or stone would bend to their command;
I’ve every faith. In able builders’ hands
are trusted tools and reputable plans
of artisans to whom the tempest yields.
I’ve every faith in able builders’ hands,
no matter what materials they wield.


I definitely enjoyed this exercise in negating or questioning the theme of something I’d previously written: I think we could all stand to question our own convictions (and fictions) more often, and if I can climb over my ego— hello, fellow poets —maybe I’ll try to do so more often!

I’ve also begun experimenting with reading my poetry aloud and posting recordings for the world (wide web) to absorb and critique, so if that sounds like something you think you might enjoy, you’d be welcome over on my TikTok page: https://www.tiktok.com/@fall_of_adam (heads-up, poetry hasn’t been my primary content over there, so continue at your own discretion).

Once again, thanks to all of my readers, to the writers who I’ve been (mostly silently) stalking this month, and of course to NaPoWriMo for hosting another enchanting month! Write on, my partners-in-rhyme.


Of Sword and Sun

More poetic inspiration from my LOTR tarot deck:

I drew The Sun (Éowyn), the Queen of Wands (Arwen), and the Six of Swords. I was particularly interested in the Queen card’s directionality, suggesting that maybe I should begin with the card on the right, follow the middle card’s flow, and end at left.

The Swords (potentially) confer grief, a darkening heart, and a need to unburden oneself of anger and resentment. The Queen represents a peacemaker, one who channels gentle charm through a bold voice for the sake of bringing together while staying true to one’s convictions. The Sun is the heart of a free spirit, representing abundance and fearlessness, offering a reprieve for the self.

I didn’t incorporate the numbers this time, but instead focused on the themes and imagery to arrive at the following:


The iron weight of anger
is a heavy sword to carry,
the edges of resentment
often honed too sharp to parry.

As griefstruck hearts may darken,
so may gentler voices rise, and
with the charm of their conviction
send their woes to far horizons:

Such breath would bear them westward
under sails and banners spun
upon the loom of understanding,
and approach the setting sun—

A sun whose own heart blazes
with abundance and reprieve,
a shield to shelter heartache
from regrets and fear unsheathed.

In time, the Sun will heal the hearts
and warm the breath that brought them,
and turn the swords, forgiven, on
the very fear that wrought them.


I’m rather enchanted with the story that this spread told, and I’m pleased that such a decent and helpful moral unfolded. I might tinker with word placement later to better fit the meter and rhyme, but it’s mostly there.

Index of Awakening

Following NaPo’s prompt to write an index poem, using various entries from C.G. Jung’s Symbols of Transformation:


I yearn for my words to attain absolute meaning
in the Abode of Souls.

It is the longing of Moth for Star,
the serpentine orbit of Heaven’s Queen
whose womb is my vessel.

I seek the primordial power of prayer!

I roam the protruding parts and cavities of
this Body Inviolate,
conjunction of Rock, Tree, and Water!

I inhabit the mythic motifs
of the Dismembered,
the Reassembled,

And I reawaken to Rhythm—


archaic fusion
transformed in my hunger
for the numinous.


Content warning on this collaboration: this one turned out rather sexually… aggressive? I figured I’d ask some friends for the following information and make a poem out of it:

Number from 2-12 (lines in the poem)
Sensory description
Number from 3-6 (feet per line)
3 action verbs (one to be used)
Idea (noun)
Something natural
Something uncomfortable

The replies were as follows:

# 2-12: 6
Sensory description: spicy
# 3-6: 5
3 action verbs: kicking, running, fisting (their emphasis)
Idea (noun): Pythagorean Theorem
Question: who are you?
Something natural: grass
Something uncomfortable: financial conflict

Which led us to… this:


When all you want to think about is kissing,
I can’t believe I’m dating such a square.
So when does it get spicy? Where’s the fisting?
The grass must be much greener over there!
If you think that you’re truly who my honey is,
then shut your mouth and put it where your money is.


I mean… a poem’s a poem, right? Beggars can’t be choosers when it’s a poem a day! (Also I kind of cheated with the Pythagorean Theorem: I just used the “square” part of a2 + b2 = c2…)

(Less than) Stellar Reviews

Following NaPo’s Day 24 prompt “to write a poetic review of something that isn’t normally reviewed.” Cue galaxy brain:


I’ve visited Orion’s Belt
past Jupiter and Mars—
It wasn’t super fancy, though;
I’d give it like, three stars?

It might be worth the trouble if
you’ve only seen the sun—
it’s much too hot and blinding there;
I’d only give it one.

I wouldn’t cross the Milky Way
to see its core again—
don’t bother with the black hole there:
no stars, don’t recommend.


I also came across this wonderful, silly little gem in Day 24’s comments, and it tickled me enough that I thought it had to be shared! Thanks for the (relatable!) laugh, Sarah!