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14 Lines A Day: The Sonnet Project's Journal

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Monday, September 11th, 2006
2:46 pm

brags2bitches
FMQ

the only images that give me peace
on another mournful day in a string
of many, that she has met them today
told them what the world was like after they
left so many holes in the east coast sky
she will share how she called each of us in
turn already knowing we were safe but
still needing the sound of our voices, then
she would brag about how she donated
money and put a magnetic ribbon
on her car, it’s still hanging there today
she tells them how hard she prayed, lunch hours
spent bent over kneelers selfish thanks that hers
were kept safe this time, God can prove this now

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Sunday, September 10th, 2006
9:59 am

brags2bitches
he has imbibed on truth serum tonight
his one defense to any argument
he loves deeply and without boundaries
in a perfect world that should be enough
there are too many flaws in land and sea
many hearts burned black by an evil sun
these things do not keep him awake at night
his blinders only allow him to see
all the beauty he believes surrounds him
destructive tendencies do not exist
all is right with the universe as long
as his heart beats loud steady evenly
there is envy that he truly thinks this
someday he will wake up and be broken

Some days I just have to Fill My Quota

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Friday, September 8th, 2006
1:50 pm

brags2bitches
it starts with something simple, a comment
some small sweet less-than-honest compliment
tell yourself it was selfless, what they need
no one should hold you accountable since
your crusade set out to accomplish good
later you’ll excuse undeniable
deceit and call it self-preservation
lose yourself in the sculpting of your words
figure out how to defend them before
anyone ever asks you the questions
you introduce yourself each day to the
new stranger you meet while brushing your teeth
you retire each night staring blankly
at worn and wrinkled maps with no legend

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Thursday, September 7th, 2006
12:36 pm

brags2bitches
how comfortable the facades we wear
have become. We hastily lay brick and
mortar. using our shredded and threadbare
souls to shine these walls gleaming and perfect.
tell our stories to good and waiting ears
promise ourselves we are healing and nice
slap hands away from fragile cookie jars
claim our hollow victory for the day
lay down cold with the company we keep
swear we’ll be better at this tomorrow
we’ve resorted to blindfolds now, because
closing our eyes is not nearly enough
how much pride will it take to keep distance
how much will it take to at last be warm

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Tuesday, September 5th, 2006
6:20 pm

brags2bitches
Because I have to write every day for this to work.

tonight, I’ll put my face on without thought
roll into auto-pilot and cover up
freckles and “beauty” marks with precision
trace my eyes wider than reality
tilt the corners up to give illusions
rouge cheeks to display joy and glee flawless
conceal my red nose of tissue burned skin
hide bloodshot eyes behind bulky glasses
try to pass the gravel in my voice off
as sexy, hail my limited and stark
conversation as mysterious and
deep, my glossy pink lips pressing thinly
when he tells me how beautiful I am
I cannot bring myself to say Thank You

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Friday, September 1st, 2006
5:34 pm

brags2bitches
Sell Out

I am wasting my life away under
these fluorescent lights, washing away all
the beautiful shades of indecisive
that exist inside of me because here,
I have to have it all clearly in check
must be the woman with all the answers
the go-getter the glass ceiling breaker
I’m discovering that we are a dime
a dozen like this, everyone reaching
for the same rung on a shaky ladder
all learning the same processes and
procedures so we can be Stepford lies
lights just keep us all from seeing clearly
tomorrow, I’ll wear white and disappear

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Thursday, August 31st, 2006
10:08 am

brags2bitches
I want to bring this community back. While I can put a star next to very little of what I wrote here the point is that it got me writing on a daily basis.

Someone was browsing around and sent me a comment on an old entry and I felt sad that we just let go of this.

rainy days make tears easier to hide
two months have boldly walked out the back door
eyes reflecting impatience at my grief
feeling the hollow knock of memories
certain days I despise myself for this
shake off the disappointment that mothers
feel for their unruly and rude children
otherwise I am angry and bitter
so textbook I don’t bother to cover
hindsight is the most horrible burden
for anyone to withstand silently
strength is this evil illusion believed
to deserve respect when faced with great loss
this is why I only cry in the rain

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Friday, April 15th, 2005
3:26 pm

pachamama
Based on the end rhymes of Shakespeare's Sonnet 73: That time of year thou mayst in me behold

Verdun

The sight is simply more than mind can hold
with comprehension. Row on row they hang
as if suspended, dipping toes in cold
thin creeping ground fog. Even birds which sang
here once are silent, as if the endless days
of mortar fire ate up all sound. To the west
more cross-filled fields stretch on and on away
beyond where eye can bear to trace. Here rest
a million mothers' sons felled by the fire
of their enemies, their neighbours. Here they lie,
whole generation shelved, sell-by expired
too soon. But what choice did they have -- stand by
and watch their homeland taken by the strong?
All for a peace so short, and death so long.

(1 comment | comment on this)

Monday, April 11th, 2005
11:39 am

pachamama
For some reason I've got myself hooked by writing sonnets using the same end-rhyme words as Shakespeare's. I'm not sure why I'm finding it so much fun, especially as it inevitably invites invidious comparison, but I can't stop myself. Here's the latest.

This one is based on Sonnet 60: Like as the waves make towards the pebbled shore.


Long Island 1986

I remember trips to the North Shore,
Friday traffic jams which wouldn't end
until Port Jeff. We'd wait 'til late before
we left Park Slope, hoping we'd not contend
with endless mercs and beemers. When the light
would seep across the line where horizon crowned
the glinting shore, we'd know it was worth the fight.
Something about the clean salt air confounds
self-conscious lower east side cool of youth;
we'd stand forgetting fascist fashion's brow-
beating in the face of larger truth.
We'd strip and, shivering, move; the surf would mow
us down no matter how we'd try to stand.
I don't remember letting go your hand.

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Thursday, March 24th, 2005
5:54 pm - When I should be working...

brags2bitches
I can clearly see Jesus’ face in
The pattern of the grey fabric that is
Stretched over the walls of my cubicle.
He is looking up at the fluorescent
Lights like they hold all the answers that he
Is afraid to admit he doesn’t have.
Who does Jesus talk to when he’s confused?
Further up the wall there is an outline
Of Iceland. Is that where the answers lie?
I notice the lone tack that used to hold
My calendar is stuck through the tail of
A whale swimming straight down to my desktop
Right now, I want to cut the Jesus from
The wall. See what I could get on eBay...

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Tuesday, March 22nd, 2005
11:15 am

brags2bitches
Morning after conversations always
Stutter and stumble just like the first few
Drops of sunrise coffee through the filter
Now lines of propriety have been smudged
There are unspoken secrets still hanging
In the air like jungle humidity
Neither person wants to say the wrong thing
So no one says the right thing resulting
In uncomfortable silence mistaking
Down cast eyes for distaste instead of fear
Too often it’s forgotten that even the
Closest of actions breeds uncertainty
Irrational doubt is a river bed
Time creates the canyon that separates

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Monday, March 21st, 2005
3:27 pm

brags2bitches
Time tarnishes like a precious metal
Makes memories fade and yellow before
You can realize you are losing them like
A big hole in a pocket full of coins
Do you recognize the difference here
Between high noon and a fast setting sun
Or is it all a blur to you these days
Are you now so lost in your dark hazy
Reflection that you’ve forgotten the clock
Can’t make up your mind what’s more important
You’re struggling with where to spend your minutes
And being reckless with these valuables
Why is it you don’t understand that you’re
Losing something precious till it’s too late

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Friday, November 19th, 2004
12:37 pm - oooooo...dirty

brags2bitches
Sweet

You are the sugar coma I worship
Chocolate eyes of sugar high and the
Bubble-gum sweetness of your silky tongue
Traveling the paths of my Candyland
As pioneering as a Baby Ruth
Your cotton candy hair tickles along
The expanses of your shaved sugar skin
Licking your hard rock candy would please me
I honor the skill of your peppermint
Stick fingers that are gentle and know me
Or maybe you would take me in hand with
Your long tangy tensile licorice whips
I would surrender and obey because
Everything about you, love, is so sweet

As much as I wanted to, I steered away from using 'pulling taffy'.

(1 comment | comment on this)

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004
9:28 am - Forgive me but... (11-10-04)

brags2bitches
I'm totally giving up on trying to catch up on these from September.

Mildew in the corner of my shower
Taunts me most mornings as I hurry through
My hygiene routine. I can close my eyes,
Turn my back, make myself early morning
Caffeine free promises I’ll clean it up
Later. By day’s end it’s no longer my
Top priority or even much of
An afterthought. Some evenings it’s very
Odd comfort that on those hopeless days when
It seems I have accomplished nothing there
Is a problem I can solve easily
On mornings when I wake angry at the
World and scared that this day will take me down
Then I scrub it out immediately

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Tuesday, November 9th, 2004
3:36 pm - November 9, 2004

doctortina
ADAPTATION

In the heart of Manhattan, a hungry black bear
strips the flesh from a branch and chews it through,
pensively, behind a velvet rope. Lucy walks the diorama and looks to
spectators without desperation, her innocent, monkeyish hair
blowing under the vents of the busy museum. Her bones already wear
the sign of this city: nicks of ash show the test of fire. Fortitude,
Darwin liked to think, is something innate to the species, true,
but trauma is a badge an animal would rather fear than bear.
We know this like a mare knows to lick the blood from her foal
or like a peahen knows her mate’s vanity, that incessant angling;
even worms twisting in soil grow a sense about what they lack.
In the Hall of Ocean Life, the giant whale rolls
his nearly-human eye toward the deep-sea fish dangling
its bright lure to a child, each of them ready for attack.

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Monday, November 8th, 2004
11:04 pm

just_jeff
November Sonnet

Is language the straw through which we sip
reality? The glass that contains
and shapes experience? The well we tap,
or the sky salting the Earth with rain?
What in the world are we doing with all
these words? And what have the words been doing
with us? Tell me, when you get a phone call,
do you have the sense that you're choosing
them, or do they choose you? "Hello." "Hey."
"Que pasa?" "Not much. You?" A stream of words
happening, just like this, day after day,
we open our mouths and they fly like birds
migrating, beating wings from the land
of me to you and back, again and again.

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Sunday, November 7th, 2004
11:12 am - more sonnets to Orlando

ex_mthrtong
#3
If you are not your reflection come in
to some money with the help of belief
in the body as a clinical term
of endearment. It is hard to love me
when I am sitting on the lawn in my
aftershave tapping my heels to a car
with a song at eye-level across the
letter you wrote to say you are not an
animal a big bug eyed tentacle
who wants to get me stoned and take away
my inheritance: two hound dogs against
the painterly tradition we hang our

Portraits along the outside walls weapons
deep in the coveys, for when we are tired.




#4
When I fell in love with you I had no
idea how to take it on the chin when
your mother calls and says we should be dead
by now we should not have survived the flood
bombings the time it rained burmese pythons
and frozen rats come in from the country
side to say time is still passing we have
not covered our chinks well enough to keep
out the rest of the world but they can tell
we have tried and that is why they do not
bring refreshments anymore. You are dead
to me also when you go out hunting

For rabbits and panthers and neglectful
woman that you are you carry a gun.

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Thursday, November 4th, 2004
1:16 pm - Orlando #1 #2

ex_mthrtong
So it's safe to say that I haven't kept up. But here are the first two sonnets in a small series I'm working on.


Sonnets to Orlando


#1
Virginia said cover every mirror
with your ears and stand strongly against
the back of your body if you can be
surprised by your own face in the evening
there is something disfunctional in the
lay of your land. Do not try to give out
your hand to me just because we lie here
whispering about her feeling confused
about the twists of our own bodies when
they want to twist around each other for
one hundred years the way that snakes will count
against themselves if it means a new skin
about the morning: all I can say is

An incorrect message was relayed to
the president he said O god bless him.



#2
If there’s anyone that’s clinically dead
it’s the people in the bodies that fish
along the borderwalk there are no fish
coming out of the water in response
to the figurative language as if
a language exists when you call my name
I will take a few minutes to notice
the mailbox in the garden figures on
some papers I keep whether anyone
has died since I got here. The evergreens
do not change every season but within
their constancy develop a certain

Sex: allegations of fraud mean I have
no body even if I wear a shade.

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Tuesday, October 26th, 2004
1:30 pm - 9-21-2004

brags2bitches
I never asked you to carve my name in
Your skin, to sign the deed over to me
I never asked for anything in my
Name other than your long passionate sighs
You tell me that a piece of your heart is
Mine, but I will never have the whole thing
You offer me honesty to make my
Choices as if having all the facts will
Keep you from blame and I guess that it does
You have obligations and I have guilt
Both heavy burdens to drag us along
I can suffer through these things on my own
Pretend it's enough, but I can't shake that
The only thing I asked for was your heart

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Tuesday, October 19th, 2004
10:29 am - 9-20-2004

brags2bitches
Katie’s Costume

Katie wants to be something scary for
Halloween. She wants to frighten people.
Masks with blood and severed appendages
Have all been vetoed to date. Her mother
Won’t send her to Catholic School that way.
As a Mom, what she says goes, no questions.
I think Katie still put up a mean fight.
She is sporting all black and a skull mask.
She has a big scythe like the Grim Reaper.
This must be the compromise they both made.
I wonder why my sister doesn’t seem
To think that death is scarier than an
Injury? I wonder what the school thinks?
I’m proud of Katie for taking a stand.

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