Fall 2014 Challenge. wVw writers were challenged to write abecedarian poems as culminating work of the workshop series. Several writers stepped up to the challenge. Several of these poems challenge the view that this acrostic form is unable to contain serious themes.
The poems are pubished beginning with Tim Brennan's A Bove the Cove.
Tim Brennan is a a poet,artist and woodworker. His work has been published in Wallkill Valley Anthology 2011 and Chronogram. He is a frequent featured reader at various Hudson Valley poetry reading venues.
A Bove the Cove
Above the cove
Battered by shifting winds,
Clouds change faces,
Divert the sun's
Flickering off wave-tops like the
Glass shards of smashed bottles.
Jigged for flounder and tautaug,
Kill without remorse––
Lancing puff-ball blowfish
Mothers' egg-filled bellies––
Nascent life left to wriggle
On the pier, to dry in the sun.
Poles are sunk into shallows where
Quahauggers tie their boats, where
Razor-clams, mussels, and blue crabs flee
Seagulls in the boats' shadows.
Terra firma slides out of sight
Under clear waves the sea pulses–– a
Ventricle to earth's heart-rhythm
Where giving and feeding, water
Extracts from the drowned boy his
Yang, his years of expectation, and his en-
Psalms at Shul
Shabbat with the Episcopalians: An Abecedarian
All the day long I listen to the choir
Boys sing their medieval melodies in a
Complicated purity of overtone like
Dawn sky, pale, pink, purposeful, my quotidian
Eschatology, why I am ineluctably to be
Found over my misericord in carved choirs of
Great gothic cathedrals, suffering some sermon.
Hesitant in the House of the Lord I sit, this Friday night an
Interlude in the synagogue, where the combined choirs,
Jewish and Christian, attack the Chichester Psalms with a
Kinetic precision that converts cells, an alchemy that
Lodges subcutaneously, a lament that spins my
Molecules into a dance with peace that passes comprehension.
Now the visiting priest parrots, hear O Israel, the Lord our God is
One, our father goes further, the only one, the only way, his Justice will
Preside. Baldly he shills this cursed land, the infernal Boolean
Query, Israel AND/OR Palestine, no ifs or buts. Oh Bernstein,
Rescue my sorry soul, spare me scenes of
Suicide bombers, blood splatters, terrorists in the
Temple, sing, you sopranos, let pour from your throats
Unholy harmonies, color your cadences, round your
Vowels, summon thunder, give voice to the wonder of
Well-tempered weighty wretches like me, systematically
X-ing out any possibility of transmuting ancestral animosities.
Yellow bellied buttercups, we wait upon the Son who left home, the
Zealot with no back to turn, the One who could not scale the gates of Zion.
Always and never changing
Beach shapes itself under
Dunes rearranging for
Each sunrise offer a benediction.
Feathers tumble along the tideline.
Gusting wind sprays rainbows.
Halos circle each step, soft sand sifting
In between toes.
Jellyfish collapsed in a glassine heap,
Killdeer skitter, gulls sleep.
Leaping dolphins breach and blow offshore.
Neap, high, and ebb cradle
Oceanides, nymphs of the sea, while
Psamathe, goddess of sand beaches, strews shells of
Quahog, ark, scallop, whelk.
Rolling in from foreign shores
Sucking and spitting, the sea
Tastes the sand,
Vast as thought.
Wandering jet streams map the sky, making
X’s of cirrus.
Yearning for union, the sea mirrors the
The ABC's of Mysticism
Apparitions in the mind
Bring hints of revelation,
Clarity of inner sight,
Dazzling visions of
Finality fades into nothingness.
Grace fills the spirit.
Horizons of infinity spring up.
Ideals become punch lines to Cosmic
Kindness toward the
Living brings the
Miracle of love.
Nebulous mutterings of
Paranormal research, are no match for
Resonance with the waves of Fate bring
Stillness in the eye of chaos.
Trancelike states of
Unconsciousness recall the
Venerable mystics who
Walked in wonder, penetrating mysteries like
X-Rays through the body of
Yahweh. No wonder the wannabes are
every fluted glass
hoisted in joyful knowledge
luxury means no old people
questions regarding senility
topics using vernacular words
xlosic yeasty zestful