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S: The Question

FC: The Question | A Poetry Project by Sarah Romans Spring 2009 | ?

1: The Question A poetry project by Sarah Romans April 21st, 2009 Stillwater, Oklahoma

3: Table of Contents | Password.........................................................................4 by Naomi Shahib Nye From an Island..............................................................6 by Naomi Shahib Nye 6th of January..............................................................8 by David Budbill Titanic..........................................................................10 by David R. Slavitt Are You the New Person Drawn Toward Me?....................12 by Walt Whitman Egg................................................................................14 by C.G. Hanzelic Poem About Morning......................................................16 by William Meredith Whatif............................................................................18 by Shel Silverstein Looking Out of a Bus Window........................................20 by Geoffrey Dilenschneider Mutterings Over the Crib of a Deaf Child.....................22 by James Wright ?......................................................................................24 by Sarah Romans The Pause of Time...........................................................26 About the Author...........................................................28 Bibliography................................................................29

4: Password by Naomi Shahib Nye I have made so many mistakes You might think I would sit down Here when it rains the streets fill up like rivers A woman swirls away in her Italian car and the whole city mourns They say she could sing till something that might not have happened had a chance again You know, that gift we give one another How can we help someone else want to live? The man who sprays trees stands beneath his hose bathing in poison He says a mask gets in his way | Here the roses stay on the branch till sun steams their petals like blackened collars I miss the evenings we walked among train tracks reading messages in the weeds even the strangest parts of ourselves growing dear A child awakens crying for candles Those little tiny skinny ones he says meaning incense sticks He wants to clutch them in his bed I have slept so many times you might think I would really be awake by now

5: I really liked this poem's idea because it poses a question I have often found myself asking, "How can we help someone else want to live?" We can't make someone want to be alive, we can only try to make them realize how great they are. The way this poem uses seemingly random examples makes it connect with anyone who reads it, especially me. My favorite line is the last one because it reminds me so much of me. | http://www.hickerphoto.com/train-tracks-canada-9510-pictures.htm

6: From an Island by Naomi Shahib Nye One quick blip of internet After days of disconnection Streak of startling lines Train blown up in India Someone famous dies Guerilla actions Military movements Bridges bombed Buckets and bags of sadness Don't want Don't want to know any of it Want any? No

7: This poem gets right to the point. I t doesn't ry to hide anything, it just IS. I like reding it because of that. When I read it I wonder if the author was on vacation, or lost, or if she chose to be disconnected. It reminds me of myself, becasue when I come back from a vacation, I don't want anything to be different. Like the poem, I just "don't want to know." | http://ile-tropicale.com/tropical-island-pictures.html

8: The Sixth of January by David Budbill The cat sits on the back of the sofa looking out the window through the softly falling snow at the last bit of gray light. I can't say the sun is going down. We haven't seen the sun for two months. Who cares? I am sitting in the blue chair listening to this stillness. The only sound: the occasional gurgle of tea coming out of the pot and into the cup. How can this be? Such calm, such peace, such solitude in this world of woe.

9: When I read this poem, I imagined myself during Christmas Break. I remember the feeling of utter relaxation without anything to worry or care about, except maybe the next meal. This poem asks the question "Who cares?" To me, when that question can be asked, then true peace has been achieved. | http://www.photografics.net/brunner/sub.html

10: Titanic by David R. Slavitt Who does not love the Titanic? If they sold passage tomorrow for that same crossing, who would not buy? To go down...We all go down, mostly alone. But with crowds of people, friends, servants, well fed, with music, with lights!Ah! And the world, shocked, mourns, as it ought to do and almost never does. There will be the books and movies to remind our grandchildren who we were and how we died, and give them a good cry. Not so bad, after all. The cold water is anesthetic and very quick. The cries on all sides must be a comfort. We all go: only a few, first class.

11: This poem is saying that secretly most people want to die "famously." Everyone is fascinated by tragedy and everyone remembers it. If you had died on the titanic, you would be remembered. That's all most people want. The best line is the last line "We all go: only a few first class." It's so true and that line is the reason I was drawn to this poem. | http://www.starway.org/Titanic/

12: Are You The New Person, Drawn Toward Me? by Walt Whitman ARE you the new person drawn toward me? To begin with, take warning—I am surely far different from what you suppose; Do you suppose you will find in me your ideal? Do you think it so easy to have me become your lover? Do you think the friendship of me would be unalloy’d satisfaction? Do you think I am trusty and faithful? Do you see no further than this facade—this smooth and tolerant manner of me? Do you suppose yourself advancing on real ground toward a real heroic man? Have you no thought, O dreamer, that it may be all maya, illusion?

13: http://masquerademask.org/ | I am always wondering if people see me for who I actually am. Sometime's I think people get the wrong impression of me and that impression is the only reason they like me. This poem reminds me of the questions that are always running through my head. I really connect with what Whitman says in this poem. It's like we are both wearing masks that we never chose to put on.

14: Egg by C.G. Hanzelic I'm scrambling an egg for my daughter. "Why are you always whistling?" she asks. "Because I'm happy." And it's true, Though it stuns me to say it aloud, There was a time when I wouldn't Have seen it as my future. It's partly a matter Of who is there to eat the egg. The self fallen out of love with itself Through the tedium of familiarity, Or this little self, So curious, so hungry, Who emerged from the woman I love, A woman who loves me in a way I've come to think I deserve, Now that it arrives from outside me. Everything changes, we're told, And now the changes are everywhere: The house with its morning light That fills me like a revelation, The yard with its trees That cast a bit more shade each summer, The love of a woman That both is and isn't confounding, And the love Of this clamor of questions at my waist. Clamor of questions, You clamor of answers, Here's your egg.

15: When I read this poem, it makes me smile in its simplicity. The character is so stunned to find out he's happy, but once he realizes it , he starts to see all the reasons he is happy. When I read the stanzas, I look around me and see all the things that make ME happy and I appreciate them so much more. | http://www.dreamstime.com/cooking-frying-egg-with-heart-shape-yolk-on-black-image6725755

16: Poem About Morning by William Meredith Whether it's sunny or not, it's sure To be enormously complex- Trees or streets outdoors, indoors whoever you share, And yourself, thirsty, hungry, washing, An attitude towards sex. No wonder half of you wants to stay With your head dark and wishing Rather than take it all on again: Weren't you duped yesterday? Things are not orderly here, no matter what they say. But the clock goes off, if you have a dog It wags, if you get up now you'll be less Late. Life is some kind of loathsome hag Who is forever threatening to turn beautiful. Now she gives you a quick toothpaste kiss And puts a glass of cold cranberry juice, Like a big fake garnet, in your hand. Cranberry juice! You're lucky, on the whole, But there is a great deal about it you don't understand.

17: http://savewizard.com/manufacturers/ikea-2/ | The mood of this poem reminded me of everytime I wake up during the weekday. If I hated yesterday, what reason is there for me to get up today. But I have to get up because I have things I have to do. I really connected with the message of this poem: you might not want to get up, but you have to , for reasons that you will never understand.

18: Whatif by Shel Silverstein Last night, while I lay thinking here, some Whatifs crawled inside my ear and pranced and partied all night long and sang their same old Whatif song: Whatif I'm dumb in school? Whatif they've closed the swimming pool? Whatif I get beat up? Whatif there's poison in my cup? Whatif I start to cry? Whatif I get sick and die? Whatif I flunk that test? Whatif green hair grows on my chest? Whatif nobody likes me? Whatif a bolt of lightning strikes me? | Whatif I don't grow taller? Whatif my head starts getting smaller? Whatif the fish won't bite? Whatif the wind tears up my kite? Whatif they start a war? Whatif my parents get divorced? Whatif the bus is late? Whatif my teeth don't grow in straight? Whatif I tear my pants? Whatif I never learn to dance? Everything seems well, and then the nighttime Whatifs strike again!

19: http://www.imranmirza.in/ | This poem asks "What If?"-- a question we are all familiar with. What I like about this poem is that it takes all the real what if's we have and makes them seem comical and much less important. I had to include at least one Shel Silverstein poem in this anthology because when I read his poems I am reminded of my childhood.

20: Looking Out of a Bus Window by Geoffrey Dilenschneider I see many things, Both young and old, New and Used, Shiny, Rusty, Dirty, and Clean I see many new things, colors, Bright, dull, fascinating, boring, eye-catching, warm, inviting, ominous, ordinary, out of the ordinary. I see many new things, rough, smmoth, happy, sad, joyful, flowing, and empty. I see things move in speed. In highe speeds yet! In all speeds, for that matter! But, in realoty, If there is such a thing, I am the one that is moving, And yet, am not moving. I guess perspective has a say in things. Would you like to know What I think? | Ha! What I think... I think I think too much I also think that I wish That more people would stiop To look around themselves more often. That more people would stop And think about what other people are Thinking about more often. That more people would stop And think about the hardships That others have gone through more often. That more people would stop And imagine what it would look like Outside of themselves more often. That more people would stop And try to see things from other's perspectives.

21: I rode the bus to and from school for most of my school life. This poem reminds me of all the times I have stared out the bus window and tried to notice all the small details of the things I passed. Dilenschneider poses the question "Would you like to know what I think?" That question stuck out to me because I am often wondering the same exact thing. | http://blog.usa.gov/roller/govgab/tags/kids

22: Mutterings over the Crib of a Deaf Child by James Wright "How will he hear the bell at school Arrange the broken afternoon, And know to run across the cool Grasses where the starlings cry, Or understand the day is gone?" Well, someone lifting curious brows Will take the measure of the clock. And he will see the birchen boughs Outside sagging dark from the sky, And the shade crawling upon the rock. "And how will he know to rise at morning? His mother has other sons to waken, She has the stove she must build to burning Before the coals of the nighttime die; And he never stirs when he is shaken." | I take it the air affects his skin, And you remember, when you were young, Sometimes you could feel the dawn begin, And the fire would call you, by and by, Out of the bed and bring you along. "Well, good enough. To serve his needs All kinds of arrangements can be made. But what will you do if his finger bleeds? Or a bobwhite whistles invisibly And flutes like an angel off in the shade?" He will learn pain. And, as for the bird, It is always darkening when that comes out. I will putter as though I had not heard, And lift him into my arms and sing Whether he hears my song or not.

23: The title of this poem immediatly caught my eye and peaked my interest. While I don't know anyone who is deaf this poem still makes an impact. Its message is that humans always overcome the obstacles set in front of them. | http://www.californiasids.com/Universal/MainPage.cfm?P=20

24: ? by Sarah Romans questioning all the things U ever said takes way more time than I have; I prefer to just move on and pretend it never happened.

25: http://www.curvedetroit.com/blog/ | I wrote this poem while sitting in English. My inspiration for this piece were several relationships (both friends and others) that ended badly. After writing it, I stopped thinking about them and just let them go.

26: THE PAUSE OF TIME by Sarah Romans Father Time said to his wife ‘Why don’t we take a break?’ She replied, with much uproar ‘Don’t you know what is at stake? All would stop there’d be no more None would live and none could die None would laugh and none could cry None would love and none could hate There’d be no destiny, there’d be no fate The trees would stop while the animals froze The sentence begun would never end The dog’s bark stopped, and ‘fini’ of the shows No sun would shine, there’d be no wind The teacher’s lesson never taught The grocer’s items never bought The blooming author would cease to pen The singer to ne’er rise above the din | The war long started would never begin No peace would bring a grateful end The God’s would stop in midst of grace No smile upon the faithful face’ (Twas then the wife stopped to catch her breath And Father Time, he did cut in) ‘Why my dear, that’s not all bad, The end of hate, the cease of wind?’ The wife whose breath was just now caught Replied with this one simple thought, ‘But my dear, do not you see?’ If all we had were good things That’d be no fun for me It takes all of those bad things To see good and all its beauty’

27: http://www.flickr.com/photos/greenlantern/128349059/ | My inspiration for this piece was a poetry contest. But, I saved it in the wrong format, so I don't think it was ever actually entered. But, oh well, now it's in this book. It was my first moderately successful rhyming poem.

28: About the Author | Sarah Romans lives in Stillwater, Oklahoma with her mother, father, and annoying older brother. She is a member of the high school colorguard, the soccer team, student council, and is also involved in several other clubs. She loves cooking painting, drawing and babysitting (well, that's more for the money actually). This is her first collection of poetry.

29: Works Cited

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