e x c h a n g e g i f t

Words are the gifts I have always wanted for myself.
They are my bars of chocolates,
my calorie-free slices of cheesecake.

My words is the gift I can give to the world.
Carefully wrapped in thin papers of prayer —
stamped with a wish that they reach

the soul who needed them

the most

even after my own gift

of life

is done.

04.07.2019
©2019 R C. Gonzales | A Reading Writer.
All Rights Reserved.
Photo via Unsplash

For NaPoWriMo 2019Day 7.
Our prompt for the day (optional, as always) is also inspired by McKibbens, who posted these thoughtson her Twitter account a few months back:

What do you deserve? Name it. All of it. What are you ready to let go of? Name that too. Then name the most gentle gift for yourself. Name the brightest song your body’s ever held. Summon joy like you would a child; call it home. It wanders, yes. But it’s still yours.

Today, we’d like to challenge you to write a poem of gifts and joy. What would you give yourself, if you could have anything? What would you give someone else?

in seven stanzas

i

There are two
not singing Asian
koehls dancing to
the tune of April
drizzle, playing
with brown, and a
bit smaller mynahs.

ii

The plane above
looked c     r      a     w      l     i     n      g ,
ever so s l o w l y ,
gliding on a noon
sky void of fluffy
nor heavy clouds,
yet with Math it’s
actually eating hundreds
of miles for its lunch.

iii

There are two
women – one wearing
a delicate, lilac hijab,
while the other
possessed eyes like
the small cracks
of a for-sale piggy bank –
sitting with a grey-eyed
man, with mane so blond.

iv

Before I was able
to sew the story of
their chit-chat, I
can’t get rid of imagining
their races’ proud flags,

v

like bokeh halos
floating on their head tops,
flying, flying, flying proud.

vi

Perhaps in that table
without kissing nor hearts,

vii

I tasted another flavor
of love.

04.02.2019
©2019 R C. Gonzales | A Reading Writer.
All Rights Reserved.
Photo by Slava Bowman on Unsplash

For NaPoWriMo 2019Day 3.
And now for today’s prompt (optional as always). Today’s prompt is based in a poem by Larry Levis called “The Two Trees.” It is a poem that seems to meander, full of little digressions, odd bits of information, but fundamentally, it is a poem that takes time. It takes its time getting where it’s going, and the action of the poem itself takes place over months. Today, I’d like to challenge you to similarly write something that involves a story or action that unfolds over an appreciable length of time. Perhaps, as you do, you can focus on imagery, or sound, or emotional content (or all three!)

evening snake

Where is my home?
Outside, the evening snake is lit,

on right it’s filled with patches of white,
on left it’s a strawberry jam of red.

Wait, perhaps, it’s not a snake,
it is but, a curved paved skin of earth,

where tiny, tiny, earthlings who
think they own the world,

are scrambling inside their
wheeled machines who promised

to take them home.
Home.

Where is my home?

04.02.2019
©2019 R C. Gonzales | A Reading Writer.
All Rights Reserved.
Photo from Unsplash

For NaPoWriMo 2019: Day 2.
Today’s prompt (optional, as always) is based on this poem by Claire Wahmanholm, which transforms the natural world into an unsettled dream-place. One way it does this is by asking questions – literally. The poem not only contains questions, but ends on a question. Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem that similarly resists closure by ending on a question, inviting the reader to continue the process of reading (and, in some ways, writing) the poem even after the poem ends.