Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Poetic Relief - Light and Dark

On 3rd April intrepid poets set out to explore some new territory.  We began by examining two poems which were similar in form but wildly different in theme and tone.  A Summer Morning by Richard Wilbur is an evocative description of a slow, warm morning in an old stone house, as experienced by its staff who are enjoying a temporary reprieve from their duties.  We took the time to enjoy the poet's descriptions of 'a quiet breakfast' and flower 'beds mosaic with the dew'.

Next we moved on to reading Traveling through the Dark by William Stafford, a much bleaker scene, heavy with questions about death and responsibility.  The colour and light was artificial, creating a tense scene: 'I stood in the glare of the warm exhaust turning red'.  

We looked at which elements of the imagined scenes each poet had chosen to use to represent a particular mood.  Homely, traditional items in Wilbur's verse contrasted with a dangerous, rugged landscape in Stafford's work.  

Following the break we each chose a Blackpool postcard to act as inspiration for our poems about the seaside landscape.  By imagining that we were standing behind the photographers responsible for the images, we could become observers of the scenes.  After we had made notes about the colours and the lighting, as well as listing everything we wanted to pick out of the pictures, we began to think about what mood we wanted to create.  There wasn't time for everyone to complete the poems this week but one group member was kind enough to share her progress so far:

Standing, waiting, on the promenade; relaxing after a busy day
The light has started to mellow as the day comes to an end
The setting sun illuminates the day like fire
Whilst the pier and strucutres upon it appear black as coal
The ferris wheel circles in a leisurely manner
A glance to the right reveals a young couple
Stopped to watch the show provided by nature
Layers donned to defend against the slight chill in the air,
The girl's dress blows in the light breeze
Much like the flags on the pier
Looking back around, the sun has lowered
The colours deepened as bit by bit
The day ambles on.            


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