Nov 11 09: Rebuilding

November 11, 2009 § 6 Comments

2page_img_asphaltTry as I might, I can’t think of a creative way to tell the Poetic Asides prompt each day, so here it is: write a construction poem. 






They strip the asphalt to
expose the wood, and rip the
bales of shingles free. Each nail is
hammered home with the precision of
a surgeon. We are the best, the salesman
said, you won’t need another roof for
twenty years. Later, they sweep the
driveway clean, taking months of
leaves with the glittery
remnants of this old house.

I want to rebuild from the bottom up;
to polish the first promise until it
reflects the moon. I want to tear down
the misplaced words and replace them
with compassion. I don’t need a salesman
to tell me what is right. It’s what’s already gone.


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§ 6 Responses to Nov 11 09: Rebuilding

  • shoutabyss says:

    I hope you don’t mind if I share. I took the same challenge and limited myself to five minutes. This is what I came up with.


    like this empty lot my heart
    still under construction
    demolish what was before
    fast cold destruction

    try to make the grade
    have a good plan
    lines that are plumb and true
    foundation that will stand

    do i have the tools
    walls of wood or stone
    keep things on the level
    a forever place to call home

    • Of course you can share!

      I like the time limit idea. In the past, I wrote for a challenge that had a 15 minute limit. But the idea died because it became obvious that many people were taking longer and it was a kind of contest. But the time limit really forces focus.

      I like how you applied building terms to an romantic subject.

  • Neil Reid says:

    (Well said Mary!)

    Here I am in far Seattle and scattered all about, using a computer – not my Mac, not even remotely, no email and a stuttering keyboard here. Less than perfection, just like every life.

    Yet here you also are building your house and building your home. I’m becoming an ol’ phonograph record cause of you. Another lovely and sneaky poem, delivered here. As they do say, “not bad for being under pressure!” You take what is the disembodied ordinary and allow it to become, unexpectedly, what is not-uncommon, yet personal and less oft spoken aloud. Both a translation and transformation! Neat trick.

  • mary says:

    Let me get this straight. You’re a hatchling?

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