Word Garden Word List #10 (Wallace Stevens)

I would be remiss if I failed to mention that, seeing Ernest Hemingway in the street, Stevens is supposed to have said, “You think you’re Ernest Hemingway,” and promptly punched Hemingway in the face, breaking his hand in doing so.  Afterward, Hemingway helped Stevens to bed to recover.  –Shay

Lilacs

a blackbird perches
in the naked apple tree
outside the window
puffed up to stay warm
I relax into the green
brocade easy chair
sipping tequila
from a Cuban flask
and listen to his snores

my bleary eyes travel,
then pause; a photo on the wall
fragrance of lilacs
haunts the room

I rub my aching jaw
and heave a great sigh.
pain and regret dance;
now I know why

Shay is the host of Shay’s Word Garden Word List.  Shay says:
Hello everyone, it’s me with your weekly word list poetry prompt! This time our list is derived from the poems of Wallace Stevens, who has been called “the best and most representative poet of our time.” Or the recent past, perhaps.  What we do here is simple: use at least 3 of the 20 words provided to write a new poem of your own–any length, any style. Then link up, visit others, and enjoy. Prompt remains “live” thru Friday.

blackbird
book
catastrophe
chimera
clattering
dithery
fragrance
gloomy
haunted
lilacs
mask
maundering
papier-mache
police
pomp
postcard
snow
song
suffers
witching

34 Comments Add yours

  1. Carrie V. H. says:

    Photos do have that power don’t they? This is lovely Lisa!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Carrie, thank you, yes they do!

      Like

  2. I have been reading Wallace Stevens Lately

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Oh? What’s your favorite poem so far by him?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The one that really stands out so far is ‘The Emperor Of ice cream. I read an analysis of it that pointed out that it had two stanzas (an Italian word for room) and is set in two rooms. The imagery is so distinctive too

        Liked by 1 person

        1. msjadeli says:

          Just read it and looked at a few notes. He writes dispassionately in this one, but perhaps in the details he is showing that he knows her well. I can see the allure of his writing.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. fireblossom32 says:

          One must watch out for those literary ghosts! This was clever and put the reader right there. I’m so pleased to hear that you are enjoying the lists!

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Thank you. By reading your lists regularly I can find out about authors I have never heard of

            Liked by 1 person

            1. fireblossom32 says:

              I meant that for LiJade, but it’s my aim for anyone to enjoy the lists. My error putting it in replies.

              Liked by 1 person

          2. msjadeli says:

            Yes indeed, Shay. Glad you like it and yes I am.

            Like

  3. hedgewitch says:

    I love the snoring blackbird, and the Cuban flask. And those sudden moments of revelation can be quite a jab to our peace; it’s often a fragrance or image that hones the knife. More Hemingway than Stevens in this perhaps, but I love it nonetheless.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you and glad you like it, Joy. Actually I think it’s Stevens in the bed snoring after Hemingway put him to bed, but then again…

      Like

  4. Ooh I love this poetic retelling

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you very much, glad you like it.

      Like

  5. Dale says:

    Oh, I love this! Makes me want to pick up both authors’ works. Mind you, I hated For Whom the Bell Tolls, so I hesitate…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks much, Dale. I watched the Ken Burns’ series on Papa last year and felt I got to know him pretty well. The only work I’ve read of his is The Old Man and the Sea as a kid. I remember it as being profoundly sad. I do want to read more of him and check out Wallace as well.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Dale says:

        I think I’m going to give him another chance 😉

        Liked by 1 person

        1. msjadeli says:

          Have you seen the Ken Burns doc series on him? I highly recommend it.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Dale says:

            No. A co-worker is Ken Burns this, Ken Burns that… eventually, I’ll actually watch one.

            Liked by 1 person

      2. Shawna says:

        Might I recommend The Garden of Eden by Hemingway? It’s fabulous.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. msjadeli says:

          Shawna, what’s the gist of the story?

          Like

  6. Sherry Marr says:

    You fashioned a lovely poem from the word list!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Sherry, so glad you like it. The lists are just what I need.

      Like

  7. memadtwo says:

    The last 2 lines are perfect. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      🙂 Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Sadje says:

    Lovely poem Li.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Sadje.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sadje says:

        You’re welcome

        Liked by 1 person

  9. oh, i like this, lots of great detail, so well done

    “my bleary eyes travel,
    then pause; a photo on the wall
    fragrance of lilacs
    haunts the room”

    that stanza right there says so much more than it actually says, i feel the dreariness of winter and the longing for spring in it. again, very well done.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Phillip, thank you, glad you connected with it.

      Like

  10. Clever use of the words to delve into the character.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Ken. It feels like a story that needed to be told…

      Liked by 1 person

  11. qbit says:

    I liked that! Felt my chin there at the end, fisticuffs with Hemingway can do that to you!

    Liked by 1 person

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