orchid odes poetry prompts – ode to light’s lover

February 1, 2017 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

capture a gesture. 

petal & leaf wave photo credit: belvin louie

petal & leafhood
photo credit: belvin louie

ode to light’s lover

her leafness rotates upon
supple stalk miss chinatown

wave subtle her upturned
face follows arc of sun god’s

caress across heavens
make food not war, children

in photosynthesis finish
before workers sweep

away firecracker tailings
of moon merriment

wrist orchid wrist

orchid odes poetry prompts – ode to village musicians

January 24, 2017 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

write to a skill developed through crisis–or write a poet’s job description.

monkey's magenta mind photo credit: mcylouie

monkey’s magenta mind
photo credit: mcylouie

ode to village musicians

—after li changgeng*

poet day laborers sing your grief pitch perfect. we start as unpaid child performers shrieking from organ grinder’s shoulder during family fights. we wail louder than the belt across our backs. distract disaster down storm drains. throw voices upside heads. dance the monkey grind.

i rant/ you rave. year after year until its clear. how to mule this mofo called sorrow. without crashing and ashing out. we work the crowd. pass hat. slap backs. pick banana pockets. growl da ancestors dis/ da ancestors dat/ da ancestors dis-n-dat.

we sleep one eye stuttery. rant one lip twitchy. howl one beat short of werewolf fur. we bang coffins sealed in folly. get free card: protect without smother. entertain without flatter. practice. practice. practice. single wail that rickshaws spirit straight through gate–comes only after 10,000 rehearsals. expect mania. capture its arc.

we drama queens & court jesters. sockfoot prophets & straight-up fools. your loss is our bread-n-butter. rice-n-kimchee. rubber neckers? maybe. grief vultures? mos def. we promise to make your funeral one villagers will rave about. long after you’ve butterflied into single red leaf dancing atop maple tree.

howl orchid howl

Note: See professional mourner & musician Li Changgeng’s interview in The Corpse Walker: Real-Life Stories, China from the Bottom Up by Liao Yiwu.

orchid odes poetry prompts – ode to stomata

January 14, 2017 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

follow the flow.

mouthy guards photo credit: mcylouie

green’s guardians
photo credit: mcylouie

ode to stomata

labia guard dogs
we check gas light
water bonafides

every inch underside
eve’s apple leaf
we 99,000 amazons

conspire sun
inspire osmosis
transpire dream
of a moist planet

swollen vulva sentries
we greet sailors
welcome fleet week

come night we eve
darkside underbrella
dodge dust toss drunks
thwart premature vaporization

no sun no sin no thesis
no foto finish
no gassed swabbies

only chloroplast
only chorusgirl
only deep sleep
only baby mouth

millions suckling silver
side of your green
you say tomato
i say stomata

pucker orchid pucker

orchid odes poetry prompts – ode to chloroplasts

January 6, 2017 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

celebrate a miracle worker.

green scene image: mcylouie

green scene
image: mcylouie

ode to chloroplasts

lift elf hands
praise sky
drink purple sunfire
unshackle oxygen
squirrel sugar

eat charcoalmaker’s footprints
wizard up warmth of suns past
breathe belly trance

unfist lungs liberate dinosaur dna
serenade ten thousand cellos
secret organelles in folds fernbeds
blow open veins jazzy planet rio

maker orchid maker

orchid odes poetry prompts – ode to new crops

December 12, 2016 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

revisit a survival tip you learned—that could save you now.

tiger song credit: belvin louie

tiger choir
photo credit: belvin louie

ode to new crops

back pocket oakland chinatown
shaolin master yao teaches
qigong beginners
to make mudra circle
over dantian field
two fingers below navel
where qi furnace blazes
“draw energy thru
circle to feed qi”

may dreamscapers
draw love thru circle
to protect & multiply
stoke qi furnace until
bones hum iron dragons
brave famine years
shelter seedling faith
create furiously
outlast armageddon

replenish orchid replenish

orchid odes poetry prompts – ode to tent

December 2, 2016 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

consider the sparest of habitats and those who lodge within.

hulan's rain roof image: mcylouie

hulan’s rain roof
image: mcylouie

ode to tent

you are cape luckless wear under roofless
skies envying brother sheep’s beard come
first snow in mud rain you squat bullfrog

defiant stretching across exile ocean with
thatched dreams of home. center pole
braced with last brick starter yeast that

survived flight. children race round flying
redbird high to fight for flour & salt sacks
flung from bellies relief trucks mama

rubs sacks soft as dresses & shirts that she
will sew patch pretty where refugee years
wink holes thru you save one big sister

covers clear plastic bottle so polestar can
plant maps in dreams to leave purgatory
of tattered capes & unfurl green leaf new

shelter orchid shelter

orchid ode poetry prompts – ode to green

November 23, 2016 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

go deep into a color’s moods.

spicy green image: mcylouie

kicks
image: mcylouie

ode to green

i am house before your people
came down from trees. shennong’s
ladder to heaven. dandelion’s
survival. celadon ransom. inlay
slip colored clay beneath glaze.
grass pushing between life’s
rings. lichen road to emerald
city. cricket’s jade ox talisman. dmz
spiked belly. crunch between

i am teeth. ocean refusing to burn. corn
when she’s cradle. rockite. stuff jalapeños
made of. neoprite envy. clover lust.
chloroplast promise. sunfish
migrant seasons great lakes to rio
grande. forest coat many colors.
frog throated impertinence. toad
fatigues. bamboo cudgel rapping jungle
monkey bar crawl. marine beret

i am ka-bar. rainforest drunk on
dew. aphid camouflage. snake dressed
for eatfest. stonewall’s mossy cheeks.
refugee flight far as ocean can see.
rice seedlings can remember. beans
stalking heaven. dragon king’s rusting
armor. metal courage. duck eye patch.
youth stout of heart. slow to burn
i am elixir that quiets all fear

treefrog orchid treefrog

after neil aitken & cynthia oda

orchid ode poetry prompts – ode to loss

November 15, 2016 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

write from inside walls.

spider work image: mcylouie

spider work
image: mcylouie

ode to loss

woke up this
morn with crater
in heart where
loved ones linger
gathering bone courage
for row long
boats cross sorrow
river when they’re
gone spiders lace
space weave scars
into fresh black
earth where heart
can find footing
walk beat again

scar orchid scar

orchid poetry prompt – vermilion bird of south – leaves

November 4, 2016 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

section iv: leaves

pistil poetry prompt:

write from a protector’s bird’s eye view

vermilion fire bird photo credit: belvin louie

vermilion fire bird
photo credit: belvin louie

ode to general of the south

vermilion enigma bird
renanthera queen
of summer fire south
dance between day
& night sowing
& reaping you bewitch
suitors gold splashed crown
wings come hither head & tail
feathers you are mercury
in cinnabar chinese
in red phoenix orchid
in rainforest carotene
in maple pepper
in red wedding sedan ash
in winged ascension ten suns
in fusang mulberry tree

feather orchid feather

 

orchid odes poetry prompts – ode to backbulb

October 27, 2016 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

write from a treasured stash.

orchid's backup band photo credit: belvin louie

orchid’s backup band
photo credit: belvin louie

ode to backbulb

they call me pseudo
bulb but nothing fake
about this crock

i kimchee provisions to
outrun manchurian
snow tigers. sympodial, i

beanpaste jars comb
pressed rows. true,
like any other son of a

rhizome i live to stampede
purple tundra free. until
cattleya drained my

watering hole swapped
me out for a younger belly
dancer now i’m backbulbed

where housewives ferment
skills where mothers go to
cry salt famine’s root cellar.

store orchid store

orchid odes poetry prompts – ode to warp & weft

October 11, 2016 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

write from an art or artisan’s point of view.

auntie jean's warpster weftster photo credit: mcylouie

auntie jean’s warpster weftster
photo credit: mcylouie

ode to warp & weft

phalanx of platelet collagen keratinocyte ambos. sunspots. keloid
polaroid. cutin subarin cork chorus. gives rough her texture.

twins skating on & under ice. mom’s green switch on wet skin.
growl that raises chicken flesh. lava chimney. brownie smoke signals.

kid knees every asphalt day. thorn ambush. hotter the mad, deeper
the needle. tax collector’s stamp. stain rights—stop evictions!

relief map generation’s merit badges. liver spots who once erased
blackboard easy. invisible ink. where rivers delta to graft the new.

weave orchid weave

orchid ode prompts – ode to judgment

September 28, 2016 No Comments Miriam Uncategorized

orchid odes poetry prompts

pistil poetry prompt:

slice through smoke.

sword dancer gangneung dano festival 2009 photo credit: mcylouie

dancer gangneung dano festival 2009
photo credit: mcylouie

ode to judgment

1.
i drive sword
thru & thru
enemy’s neck
kill heart kill time
kill lungs kill soul’s abode
now upstart gun gods
fling false falcons
rain fire on
wedding parties
even one-eyed raven
could see filiagree
bride’s veil
have their generals forgotten
how to drive sword
thru & thru
armor gristle bone
drink goblet
of man’s character
from his dying eyes?

2.
judge man
not by his answers

but by his questions
said confucius

his bamboo
rod no less severe

than jehovah’s
flood justice

what happens when
i judge others by

my questions not
theirs are not

locusts frogs blood
rivers far behind?

pestilence orchid pestilence

© , Miriam Ching Yoon Louie | Visual Design by Jai Arun Ravine