York, a chapbook
One of my favorite Calvin and Hobbes cartoon of all time lies in the great but simple word “smock”.
I know how Hobbes feels – I feel the same way about the word “york”. What a great word. So good in fact, that I decided my next major project is to make a chapbook of poetry with that word as the central theme. A chapbook, for those who don’t know, is the poet’s equivalent to the novelist’s novella.
And so, I have written the following poems:
- “Wartime River”, a sympoe about two famous battles by the York River in Virginia
- “Manservant Blues”, a blues poem about York, William Clark’s “manservant”
- “Alvin Cullum York”, a poem about a first war soldier
- “Ode to Avro York”, an ode for a plane in the second war
- “First Freemsons”, a narrative. Some group had to be the first freemasons of the York Masonic Rite, right?
- “If York Minster Were My Old Cat”, the history of York Minster using a cat as metaphor
- “House of York”, blank verse narrative about Richard, the third duke of York
- “Peppermint Patty Left Behind”, a political poem about George Bush’s disastrous No Child Left Behind, with old York Peppermint Patty commercials as the poetic trope.
- “Corpus Christi”, a free-verse narrative about the York Mystery Plays (a cycle of 48 plays dating from the 14th century)
- “The Great John Hancock Journal Rant”, about the York, PA 1777 continental congress
- “Issac Reasons With Rebecca”, based off of the Ivanhoe characters
- “Acceptance”, about receiving my acceptance letter from York College of PA
I plan to write more poems with the following subjects in mind:
- York, an area inside Toronto, ON
- One of many small rural American counties called York.
Interference, a chapbook
Poems that chronicle being a Melanoma survivor, and everything that entails.
Northbound On Logic Street, a book
The manuscript is a time machine. The poems move from the Paleolithic Period to the present and into the future. The book is a journey from drunken eras of spirituality and mythology to the blossoms of logic and science and their sobered importance.
Queen Nefertiti learns her lesson. Polyphemos has a chip on his shoulder. The Siwa Oracle receives her most famous guest. An elephant and a horse help describe an ancient battle.
A Hindu god gets his head cut off. Ovid casts judgement on a deadly sin as Shaka Zulu confesses his. Charles Darwin seduces a woman before his chance meeting with a poet. An American city and an Indonesian town learn tragedy first hand.
Each poem takes on a different style or form from the others that came before it. I write formal verse and free verse (both structured and unstructured), comedy and tragedy, traditional rhyming patterns and made up ones, metered and unmetered.