This is a Good Poem April 2nd

It’s the day after April Fool’s Day and I hate practical jokes, so let’s just stick with the fools we all can be.

Dorothy Parker is famous for her witty verse, her funny/heartbreaking fiction, and her tragic life.  When I decided to become a writer twenty years ago, I wanted to be thought of as the love child of Georgette Heyer and Dorothy Parker.  I aim high.  You want a great, funny short story about a woman whose life will make you cry? Read “Just A Little One.” (“Now Edith looks like something that would eat her young . . .”)  Yes, I know this is a poetry post.  The way that woman wrote short stories, they were poetry.

Of course she also wrote this beauty:

Men don’t make passes
At girls who wear glasses.  

Actually, just glom all her stuff.  She was great.







12 thoughts on “This is a Good Poem April 2nd

  1. This comment is not about poetry. I just want to mention that it’s freaking snowing again so that Meg and I had to cancel our lunch date and it’s APRIL. WTF? Also weird: It’s going to be 44 this afternoon and in the 60s on Wednesday.

    I’m going back to bed.

    1. I woke up to snow, too – not much, but it’s now wet and foggy. I’m staying in, too. And then the temperature goes back up tomorrow. It seems to be a weekly thing at the moment.

    2. We went to see the lilacs blooming at Descanso Gardens yesterday because they’re my favorite flower and it would have been Emma’s 13th birthday and we needed to do a happy thing, but winter is hanging on so long this year, even in “sunny” SoCal, that only a few bushes had anything to say for themselves just yet. There were enough to be gorgeous, because lilacs, and the cherry trees were starting to feel fancy, so that was nice too, but I really feel for y’all on the East Coast. Enough snow is enough already. Geez.

    3. Snow here too, although most of it melted by afternoon. I woke up, looked out the window, and said, ARGH!

      We’re supposed to have snow on and off all week, some rain (enough to possibly cause flooding) and maybe freezing rain, and temps in the 30’s, well below normal.

      Enough already, oy.

  2. Men seldom make passes at girls who wear glasses has been true all my life. Which is fine since I tend to be a creep magnet anyway and don’t like anyone. Also seems to have way lowered my opportunities for sexual harassment compared to most folks.

    Love Dorothy.

  3. It rained again yesterday. It will take at least 3 days for the ground to dry out before I can finish the weeding but, of course, it is expected to start raining again in two days then rain for another 4 days. By which time it will start all over again and the weeds will be up to my knees and weeding will be a huge chore.

    That poem should be required reading for all young girls who think a hard-eyed bastard is a great lover to take a chance on. They never change. They never suddenly fall in love with anyone but themselves. As a good friend said of her first husband, “Never fall in love with a narcissist. He will be charming, intelligent and ultimately only in love with himself.”

  4. I think my favorite is The Dark Girl’s Rhyme:

    Who was there had seen us
    Wouldn’t bid him run?
    Heavy lay between us
    All our sires had done.

    There he was, a-springing
    Of a pious race
    Setting hags a-swinging
    In the market-place;

    Sowing turnips over
    Where the poppies lay;
    Looking past the clover,
    Adding up the hay;

    Shouting through the Spring song,
    Clumping down the sod;
    Toadying, in sing-song,
    To a crabbed god.

    There I was, that came of
    Folk of mud and flame–
    I that had my name of
    Them without a name.

    Up and down a moutnain
    Streeled my silly stock;
    Passing by a fountain,
    Wringing at a rock;

    Devil-gotten sinners,
    Throwing back their heads;
    Fiddling for their dinners,
    Kissing for their beds.

    Not a one had seen us
    Wouldn’t help him flee.
    Angry ran between us
    Blood of him and me.

    How shall I be mating
    Who have looked above–
    Living for a hating,
    Dying of a love?

  5. I enjoyed this past weekend’s NPR story on what haiku is – and is not:

    It reminded me of witnessing several years ago a trio of haiku, hokku, senryu writers (poets?) going at it with each other on whose poetry was purer than haiku pure, whose haiku translations of the masters were correct, and otherwise arguing amongst themselves in unseemly ways, though at least they didn’t throw things. I’m sure, or I hope, that the one with the best sense of humor went home to write a haiku about the argument itself 🙂

  6. This was the perfect snow–it’s all gone now and will likely not be back until later this year!
    It was the perfect snow–pretty coming down, pretty on the ground and gone within hours!

    Wonder what would have happened had Dorothy P. worn contacts . . .

    It is too bad her life hadn’t been commandeered by rom com author who would have dealt with the bastard in an amusing way (maybe he was a bastard and she ended up with someone better, probably someone who also wore glasses, or he wasn’t a total bastard and she “fixed” him) so that she ended up happily ever after.

    And, wait–isn’t haiku just about 17 syllables? 3 lines–5-7-5? Maybe a passing reference to something related to nature if you are picky? I thought those were all the rules.

    1. Re Haiku 5-7-5: If I remember correctly, there are rules but 5-7-5 isn’t one of them – at least not a Japanese Haiku rule.

      Americanized Haiku has an interesting history, some of which is recounted in “The Haiku Handbook,” although you could probably talk to 3 poets (and teachers of poetry) and get 3 different “histories” of American Haiku.

      Books and articles on teaching American Haiku give you some idea how the 5-7-5 came about, mostly it seems expediency or misunderstanding or in some instances a failure to research Haiku literature before going forth and teaching “how to teach Haiku” to K-12 teachers, not unlike the way how-to-teach history is taught in many states.

      I’ve also heard that it’s a translation misunderstanding.

      It’s worth reading Senryu, which are humorous or lighthearted Haiku – more than that, actually, but there’s that expediency thing when it comes to “defining” Haiku and Senryu 🙂


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