8/2/22 Workshop – A Poem by Chen Yun

                     Summer – Chen Jun

The swinger the swirler the swirled: stop grieving.

I drink all night but in a diminishing appetite.

The scene outside is obscene from a humbling window.

My sentiment spreads, my famine a flagpole, a grizzle.

Birds sing next year’s songs, or antique rescues.

I write but where shall I send it?

Let go — I shall go tie the flowers the leaves the whole orchard.

The outskirts are curved, shadows of countrywoman donors    …

You bring me a cup of fresh tea that I love,

I return you two kapok leaves — like hand waves.


Reflective writing prompt:

Write about letting go.

7/19/22 Workshop – A Poem by Ada Limón

What It Looks Like To Us and the Words We Use
by Ada Limón

All these great barns out here in the outskirts,
black creosote boards knee-deep in the bluegrass.
They look so beautifully abandoned, even in use.
You say they look like arks after the sea’s
dried up, I say they look like pirate ships,
and I think of that walk in the valley where
J said, You don’t believe in God? And I said,
No. I believe in this connection we all have
to nature, to each other, to the universe.
And she said, Yeah, God. And how we stood there,
low beasts among the white oaks, Spanish moss,
and spider webs, obsidian shards stuck in our pockets,
woodpecker flurry, and I refused to call it so.
So instead, we looked up at the unruly sky,
its clouds in simple animal shapes we could name
though we knew they were really just clouds—
disorderly, and marvelous, and ours.

Reflective writing prompt:
Write about how the world looks to you.