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Lyrical Prose or Prose Poems?


English: Image of cover of S. Carpilli Tinker'...

English: Image of cover of S. Carpilli Tinker’s volume “Where Is the Prose Poem Now and What Is It Doing?” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Today was the last day of the 7th poetry challenge week for Our Lost Jungle website operated by Khara House. It’s a marvelous site and everyone should stop in just to see how this thing works. The form challenge for this week was to write a prose poem.


What is a prose poem? Well, it gets complicated because consensus is hard to come by on that question.  To quote Khara, who teaches poetry:


For our purposes, though, let’s pool a few standard “rules” of the prose poem form to work with:
1. A prose poem is a poem that is written in prose (which basically means a poem without line breaks—I purposely avoid using the term “paragraph of poetry” as some poets do, because it’s something more than a paragraph)
2. It is the job of the poet writing a prose poem to ensure that the poem still maintains a “poetic quality”
3. To maintain that quality, the poet should employ common poetic techniques, such as rhyme, repetition, heightened imagery, fragmentation, etc.
4. A prose poem can be anywhere from a few lines to a full page, and beyond”


I made two attempts at this challenge. Here they are for your enjoyment.



Prose Poems



My Nirvana



The perfect spot to rest and reflect squatted a dozen yards ahead; the brook widened and wrapped around it like a snake eating its own tail, leaving a tiny island isolated from the world. A fold of hazelnut root, sheltered and shaded by dreamy green of Lady’s Slippers and Solomon’s Seal drew my attention as congregations of May-apples gossiped in the breeze. Their saucy white-blossomed petticoats flirted with me, while the sickly sweet scent of those petticoats rode the breeze to mingle with the distinctive smells of wild herbs. Other greens added their odors to blend with that of loamy soil to form a unique perfume around my tiny secret island.



#  #  #  #



Life Journey



My poor young self listened to the words string themselves into commentary, wrapping around daydream like so much cotton candy on a stick. When I found the desert with its solitude and saguaro sentries, I drank in its nights while sitting under a blanket of the galaxy’s brightest stars. Air tasted of cactus flowers and dust, and coyotes howled for the sake of hearing their own chorus. Skunks did their nightly rounds, looking to pilfer whatever delicacies were left unattended. Words came. Not in a flood, but rather with the smoothness of a desert creek; shy, hiding from onlookers until sunlight couldn’t be avoided, when it burst forth to glitter and pulsate with personal meaning. That piece of me that always waited for the right time emerged, and the quiet inner voice remained to tell its stories and run the mental projector. Now, though, a real audience sat in the theater. I focused on that murmur and listened. Awareness hummed within me.





  1. Carrie
    August 17, 2012 at 6:58 am

    Ooooh, I’m not really one for poetry (I know, scandalous) but I found the imagery here quite lovely. Especially like the idea of the snake eating its own tail to create an island and the daydreams wrapping like cotton candy on a stick. Beautiful prose pieces, Clauds.

    • claudsy
      August 17, 2012 at 1:33 pm

      I’m so glad, Carrie, that you could enjoy my verses. Thank you. Stick around. You never know what might spring out of the bushes and snare you around here.

  2. August 21, 2012 at 6:31 am

    Thank you. You are correct prose poems do not have line breaks and since your blog I have corrected my work.

    • claudsy
      August 21, 2012 at 10:54 am

      Thank you, Ramin. Glad to be of service. I hope you have many lovely years of writing lyrically, for deliberate poetry or not.

  3. Veronica Roth
    August 25, 2012 at 3:24 am

    That sounds good Claudsy. It’ll be nice for me to find you in one place…so to speak… 🙂 Anyway, can’t get rid of me that easily!
    PS, really enjoying the photos on FB of you, Betty and Meena, so nice for a visual person like me to see you three.

    • claudsy
      August 25, 2012 at 9:04 am

      Ah, good girl. Thanks, Veronica. I’m glad. And I do think this will make it easier for everyone on many levels. I’m glad you’re going to stick around.

      As for pics, you can thank Betty Jo for those. She’s the photog in the family. We’ve had so much fun during Meena’s visit. She’s such a sweet gal.

  4. March 1, 2013 at 11:25 pm

    Exactly how long did it take u to create “Lyrical Prose
    or Prose Poems? | Claudsy’s Blog” lynnraedesigns.com ? It provides quite a bit of high-quality material. With thanks ,Blanca

    • claudsy
      March 1, 2013 at 11:37 pm

      Jolene, I really can’t say how long it took to write these; though I doubt it was more than an hour. When writing my impressions of a place or writing about a memory of being somewhere specific, this is my natural way of expressing it.

      I’m certainly glad that you find it to be quality material. Thank you so much for leaving me this comment. It’s a nice one indeed.

  1. August 30, 2012 at 11:38 am

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