Friday, August 23, 2013

A Cleave Poem

Cleave: Split or sever (something), esp. along a natural line or grain.


What is a cleave poem? I hadn't heard of them before reading one at The Storyteller's Scroll. Gayle explains "It is three poems in one. Read the left column vertically as poem #1, the right column as poem #2 and the entire poem horizontally as poem #3." I thought that sounded irresistibly impossible, so I gave it a try. I wrote this for my mom's birthday:

Warmth, Delivered

She tends to her         blocks of comfort and color
duties as faithfully       quilted together
as the                          warm
sun delivers                 my
morning                       song

************

More cleave poems:

* Releasing and Relishing by Rama Devi Nina Marshall
* A collaborative cleave poem by Helen Williams and Kat Austen.
* And as if a cleave poem with two columns wasn't enough of a challenge, here's one with three columns: Marrow by Andrea Barton.

Betsy at I Think in Poems is our Poetry Friday host today.

14 comments:

BJ Lee said...

Hi Tabatha! How anyone writes a cleave poem is just beyond me! Nice job with a difficult form! I love the sun delivering a morning song! :)

Jone said...

I love this. What a wonderful gift for you mom. I, too, like the line about the sun delivering the morning song.

jama said...

I love this. Hadn't heard of cleave poems before. What a challenge. You did a great job.

LInda Baie said...

I've not heard of them, Tabatha, and what a challenge! You wrote a beautiful one about (for) your mother. I love the idea of faithful in the comfort and color. I'm going on to check on the links too!

Margaret Simon said...

This is one of those looks easier than it is forms. You make it look easy. I love how you tied together faithful to the sun. Beautifully crafted!

Author Amok said...

Wow. You nailed it! And what a perfect image -- the warmth of that quilt -- to accompany your poem.

This is a cool form. Thanks for introducing me to it. Hope you all survived your daughter's first week at college!

Ruth said...

Wow! I never heard of these either. Yours is amazing!

Myra Garces-Bacsal from GatheringBooks said...

This must be the third Poetry Friday post which plays with poetic structure and form! How nice that we seem to be all on the same wavelength (of sorts) haha. Love your poem. And the gorgeous quilt photo - very striking!

Liz Steinglass said...

Wow! Well done. I will put this form on my list of things to do.

Mary Lee said...

NICE!! I love your opti-pessimistic approach "irresistibly impossible!" Unlike Julie's double dactyls, I might actually try THIS tricky form!!

Liana said...

Very well done, Tabitha! Gayle is very good at this form, too, and I am in awe at how something that seems so simple can at the same time be so complex. Your cleave poem is just lovely.

Keri said...

Your love of a challenge benefits the rest of us. Well done, you. I'd love to see a photo of your notebook as you wrote this, if you did it with pen and paper. I would think the process had to take a bit more word play to make the puzzle fit than most poems.

Betsy H said...

I am so impressed that you would try a form so difficult. Then you went and did it beautifully, even more impressed. Awesome.

Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

Wow. Goodonya Tabatha! I like how even your title is "cleaved." I'd also like to give this form a try at some point, but I don't know if I'm quite ready yet. Margaret's right, though-- yours weaves together so effortlessly, you make it look easy.