Thursday, October 22, 2015

Five for Friday: Call of the Beast


"Beast" by KetsukiKyuu

On Tuesday I featured my contribution to this month's DMC challenge, a poem called Before the Last Petal Falls. (You can read it HERE.)

I'm not going to lie— this one was a struggle.

Josée Holland Eclipse
Actually, writing the poem wasn't any more of a struggle than usual. It was finding something to write about that was killer. Marcus Ewert challenged us to write a love poem about a relationship that seems unrequited, but turns out to be requited after all. Reflecting on memories was not helpful and my imagination was running on empty. My muse went AWOL... lost in a wasteland barren of ideas.

But as any creative practitioner knows, when ideas are scarce, borrow someone else's as a jumping-off point. Eventually I turned to one of the classic unrequited-becomes-requited love stories: Beauty and the Beast.  Fancying myself a champion of flawed characters, I told the story from the Beast's perspective. My interpretation is based on scenes from the popular Disney version, though I also researched the original version from 1740 by Madame Gabrielle–Suzanne de Villeneuve.

Here's something interesting I picked up from author Susanna Barlow's analysis of the fairy tale:
All of us seem to have a part of ourselves that we do not like, that feels like a beast of some kind. That side of us tends to be unpredictable and untamed. Because it is big and powerful we tend to lock it up and refuse to face it. We are, both, drawn to our primordial selves and repelled by it. Sometimes we hide it like the hunchback in the tower or we cover it with a mask like the phantom. Other times we run from it like Jane Eyre and Ann Darrow who are terrified of either the consequences of their feelings or the wild creature itself. Other times we are simply intrigued like Jane was with Tarzan.

jack-the-pmpkn-queen (click to enlarge)
Now it's your turn 
to heed the call of the Beast

Any "beast" will do.

Halloween-inspired ditties are welcome.

The only catch is that you need to limit yourself to five words (plus title, if you like).

As I did last year, I will supply you with fifteen words from my handy-dandy magnetic horror poetry set. (Thanks, Tabatha!) You may use these words, or not, as you please—they are offered as inspiration only.




Leave your five-word beastie in the comments and I will move it up to the main body of the post where they can all play together. Just promise me you won't stress over it— it's only five words, after all.  I'll start us off...

AUSSIE ENCOUNTER

Not 
Red Riding Hood's 
huntsman

~ Michelle Heidenrich Barnes

For those a bit more adventurous, here's a short video.

* * * * *

Ancient fire
summons
demon lies.

~ Margaret Simon

* * * * *

CONQUERING WRITER'S BLOCK

Wildly wielded bludgeon
Whacks procrastination

~ Tabatha Yeatts

and another, more seasonal beastie...

For frighteninger Frankensteins,
add fangs
~ Tabatha Yeatts

* * * * *

TOOTHBRUSHING TIME

Gargoyle gurgles,
sloshing loathsome spittle

~ Buffy Silverman

* * * * *

MINIMALIST

Skeleton:
all bones
no skin.

~ Diane Mayr

 * * * * *

LOATHSOME JACK

Hunger unleashed!
Toothless grin.
Chomp!

~ Carol Varsalona

Here's a picture of Loathsome Jack (created from a live squash).

* * * * *

Evening Ghouls
Gnawing,
Rotten Flesh.

~ Iphigene at Gathering Books

* * * * *

HELLO-BOO

Olive-eyed spiders
Spinning
Jack-o-lantern
Smiles

and

OCTOBERRR NIGHTS

Candy-corn drizzle’s
Glowing under
Snapdragon-moon

~ Jessica Bigi

* * * * *

OBLIVION

Eerie shadow
Clenched teeth
Knocking

~ Leane Gill

* * * * *

TEMPER TANTRUM

Chew me out.
Tasty guts.

~ Jama Rattigan

* * * * *

BEASTLY GENEALOGY

Dragon Lady
begot
Tuba Beast

~ cbhanek

Read the story behind this ditty here.

* * * * *

Loathsome fangs
stalk
ancient hunger

~ Matt Forrest Esenwine

* * * * *

VAMPIRE BAT

Fangs
too sharp
to feel.

~ Liz Steinglass

* * * * *

Computer Demons
Devour our time...

~ Michelle Kogan

* * * * *

Gnashing fangs
rip the darkness.

~ Rosi Hollinbeck

* * * * *

Gruesome Ghoulies-
Freaks of Nature

and

 Off With Their Heads!
CHOP

~ Janie Lazo



Two reminders before you go: 

Last call for Ditty of the Month Club poems! Next Friday will be our wrap-up celebration and MUMMY CAT giveaway. Besides my own, this week's featured poems were by Teresa Robeson and Leane Gill.

Be sure to stop by Jama's Alphabet Soup for a sweet treat and this week's Poetry Friday Roundup.

44 comments:

  1. Gross! Not the post or poem, of course! Gross is that huntsman spider. After feasting my eyes on Jama's delicious-looking site, I'm sorry my curiosity got the better of me; I'm sorry I clicked on that photo:) Gross! ...In all seriousness, thank you, Michelle, for your DOM poem and its back story. I especially appreciated the research that you undertook; this post would be especially valuable for students to see how research informs creative work. (I need to reread the fairy tale analysis excerpt you quoted.) Not only are you an accomplished poet with meaty wrap-around posts, but your understated sense of humor always functions like an after-dinner delectable dessert. Thank you for the "beasty" challenge. As you said, it's a piece of cake--only 5 words, after all:) God bless!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for such a thoughtful comment, cb. Hope you'll come back with your 5-word beastie!

      Delete
  2. Conquering Writer's Block

    Wildly wielded bludgeon
    Whacks procrastination

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What I want to know is where can I get one of those procrastination bludgeons! I think you better apply for the patent, Tabatha, before someone else does.

      Delete
  3. Toothbrushing Time

    Gargoyle gurgles,
    sloshing loathsome spittle

    ReplyDelete
  4. Fun challenge for today!

    Minimalist

    Skeleton:
    all bones
    no skin.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well done on getting to the core of this challenge, Diane. ;)

      Delete
  5. Another fun creative challenge that I just had to try. Of course, I added a digital creation but the poem itself is:

    Loathsome Jack

    Hunger unleashed!
    Toothless grin.
    Chomp!

    You can find my post with the digital monster (created from a live squash) and the poem at http://beyondliteracylink.blogspot.com/2015/10/beastie-ready-for-lunch-invited-to.html.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm impressed. You whip out those digital creations like they were nothing, Carol. Well done!

      Delete
  6. Lovely poems very apt for Halloween. I'm intrigued and so I shall try, here's mine:

    Evening Ghouls
    Gnawing,
    Rotten Flesh.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So happy you stopped by with your ghoulfriend, Iphigene. ;)

      Delete
  7. Stench- I love that word.
    Will haunt you with an entry - later.
    If not sooner.

    Such fun!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jan, I have half a mind to use "Stench– I love that word" for your five-word ditty. Seriously... it works for me! ;)

      Delete
  8. Oblivion

    Eerie shadow
    Clenched teeth
    Knocking

    ReplyDelete
  9. What a fun fall party going on in here today I love everyone poems so festive for the season :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Love those creepy "olive-eyed spiders," Jessica. My huntsman spider thanks you for the company!

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    2. Thank you I was wondering if these are also copyrighted under our names

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    3. Yes, they are, Jessica. Even though I don't include a formal statement re: copyright for the Five for Friday poem parties, you retain copyright for ANYTHING you submit to Today's Little Ditty.

      Delete
  10. TEMPER TANTRUM

    Chew me out.
    Tasty guts.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I decided to work with just the words you provided...

    Loathsome fangs
    stalk
    ancient hunger

    ReplyDelete
  12. I was struck by a demon while reading this challenge, here it is...
    Computer Demons
    Devour our time...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Chillingly accurate, Michelle!

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    2. Oh yes! I know these demons all too well, I'm afraid.

      Delete
  13. This is hard -- only five words. This is the best I can do.
    Gnashing fangs
    rip the darkness.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. IMHO, Rosi, "the best you can do" is pretty darn awesome! I can hear those fangs gnashing and ripping the black of night.

      Delete
  14. Gruesome Ghoulies-
    Freaks of Nature

    ReplyDelete
  15. Oh my gosh - these are all terrific! What a great challenge and responses. I'll try to sit in one place for more than five minutes next year and join the fun. Kudos all around... :0)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fair enough, Robyn. Fortunately, your awesome 5-word ditty from last year will hold me over....

      ditties
      splatter
      across the page

      Still loving that one!

      Delete
  16. Replies
    1. Find yourself a Queen of Hearts costume and you'll be all set for Halloween, Janie. ;)

      Delete
  17. What a wonderfully talented group! If you haven't watched the trailer for "Pride & Prejudice & Zombies," you should. I couldn't watch the whole movie, but the trailer was perfectly horrible in the most delightful way! xoxo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! Just watched it. Good golly, Miss Molly... what a mash-up!

      Delete
  18. Know the official 5-word deal expired, Michelle, but once those creative juices start flowing....2 Beasties, Squeezed--this week's Poetry Friday squeezed poems: http://cbhanek.com/2015/10/30/2-beasties-squeezed/

    ReplyDelete