In Praise of Prose #NaPoWriMo18 #NPM18

prose by sarah barker


Its quotidian concerns. Its hereness.
The coffee mug sits on the table.
It is only a coffee mug.
The sugary dregs at the bottom of the cup aren’t a metaphor.
I am going to drink them.

Its plain clothes. Its modesty.
Prose is the quiet workhorse.
Always the first to raise its hand, the first to volunteer.
The first one to the office in the morning,
The last one to leave.

Its wide open spaces. Its ranginess.
And this, and this, and this…. and this other thing too.
No need to distill or concentrate.
We aren’t making jam here.
More will always be more.

national poetry writing month 2018






6 responses to “In Praise of Prose #NaPoWriMo18 #NPM18”

  1. Amanda Potts Avatar

    This is powerful, this poem about prose. Normally I tell you which lines I like, but here I like them all. Do I prefer the second stanza? the third? I don’t know. “We aren’t making jam here.” Are you missing prose halfway through this month? If so, it’s worth noting that this poem won’t convince anyone that you shouldn’t be writing poetry.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      LOL, Amanda, yes, you guessed it: I am missing prose. This poem started as a prose entry in my notebook all about how much I love prose–then I realized oh hey, this could be a poem! That’s handy! Prose feels so free and easy by comparison to poetry! I appreciate your comment so much. I ultimately enjoyed writing this one, even though the whole thing is making me cranky!

  2. glenda funk Avatar
    glenda funk

    I sense your struggle w/ poetry today is real, as is mine. Can’t we just call the coffee–coffee? I need the long form. Forget this economy of language. Still, I’m continuing my search for metaphor and all the other poem stuff, as I know you are, too.

    Oh, I do love the poetic way you praise prose. Ironic, eh?

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      I need the long form as well, though I am finding that my notebook writing is changing and getting a bit better as a result of the experiment with poetry. Still, I will be celebrating May 1!!

  3. cweichel Avatar

    I’m reading Bao Phi this days and appreciate how he moves from prose to poetry and back.

    1. Elisabeth Ellington Avatar

      I am not familiar with Bao Phi–off to investigate!

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