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Someone, Please Fix MeMy dang washer's worn again! It "sucks" to get old,or in my case, "drips".I just drip, drop, drip like a cold with a runny nose.I guard earth's precious elixir, preparedto share at a touch. I love it when I'm free!Streams of healing, life saving, cleansing, refreshingwater flowing forth.This is what I live for! Help! ~~Judi Van Gorder
Persona or Mask Persona or Mask is a narrative or story told through the voice of a fictional character created by the author. The word persona is from Latin meaning a mask made of clay or bark worn by actors. (This loose connection to the Latin gave me a forum under which to include this article.) Persona has evolved to be the "person" who speaks in a poem or work of fiction. That person's character can be developed not only through the words he or she speaks but also from the events surrounding the character. The device is an effective way to tell a story because the story unfolds through the first person, a fictional eye witness. In reality a poet takes on a persona with each poem. We write of imaginary experiences, relationships, hardships, successes as if we were there. The voice should take on the accent or dialect of the character, use phrasing or language of the time and region. The character need not be a person, it could be an inanimate object such as a tomb speaking or an animal, a dog speaking, etc The poem often used as an example of persona is Robert Frost's Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening. Who is this person speaking? He tells us much, he knows the owner of the woods, he stops to enjoy, he cares about his horse, he has promises to keep. Then he leaves us with questions. why would he care if the owner saw him, what is their relationship, what are these promises that moves him on? The poem is the simple story of a journey and a moment along the way. A less subtle example of Persona is Langston Hughes, Mother to Son. And here is the story of Zimbabwe's plight under the presidency of Robert Mugabe, told through the voice of a Zimbabwe child. Zimbabwe Child Papa cross the Limpopo not fear crocodile say, get work gone whole year. No letter for Mama no medicine. Miriam, she eight sweep floor, clean baby wipe Mama’s brow spoon mankata broth. No school for Miriam no medicine. Beggar bowl for maize I dig in dirt find siboyani root to feed scorpion in belly. No maize for make nsimi no medicine. Baby sick like Mama before she go to clinic not come home baby cry dry tears No milk for baby no medicine. No one see no one care throw away Zimbabwe child. No letter, no school no maize, no milk. No medicine. ---- Judi Van Gorder August 2011 Limpopo, crocodile infested river on the patrolled border between Zimbabwe and South Africa which is the most popular route for starving Zimbabweans looking for work, many die from the crocodiles. Others are caught and placed in refugee camps that are little more than internment camps and still others are simply turned back. siboyani root, native African plant, the root is dug up and must be boiled 5 hours before it can be mashed in the broth. mankata root, native African plant, the root is found in swampy areas. nsimi is a kind of dumpling or bread that is made from cornmeal with oil and water then rolled into balls and eaten dipped into vegetable broth.
Zimbabwe Child Papa cross the Limpopo not fear crocodile say, get work gone whole year. No letter for Mama no medicine. Miriam, she eight sweep floor, clean baby wipe Mama’s brow spoon mankata broth. No school for Miriam no medicine. Beggar bowl for maize I dig in dirt find siboyani root to feed scorpion in belly. No maize for make nsimi no medicine. Baby sick like Mama before she go to clinic not come home baby cry dry tears No milk for baby no medicine. No one see no one care throw away Zimbabwe child. No letter, no school no maize, no milk. No medicine. ---- Judi Van Gorder Notes: ▼ This was written in 2011. At that time a child died every 15 minutes in Zimbabwe. Once known as the "bread basket of Africa" the farm lands lie fallow and unworked, taken from the farmers and given as prizes to the military vets who fought the revolution. Life expectancy is now age 45 and unemployment is 80%. AIDS and starvation are rampant. The inflation rate since 1978 is 231 million percent. Robert Mugabe has been president since 1978. He is running for reelection this year at the age of 87. Mugabe finally was forced to resign in November 2017 at the age of 93 and is currently under military arrest. 2013 International Health Organizations through much effort instituted health reforms that reduced drastically the transmission of AIDS from mother to infant and continued efforts have brought the infected rate to 13.7% of the population. In 2017 the life expectancy is age 59 so there has been improvement. Zimbabwe still has a long way to go. Limpopo, crocodile infested river on the patrolled border between Zimbabwe and South Africa which is the most popular route for starving Zimbabweans looking for work, many die from the crocodiles. Others are caught and placed in refugee camps that are little more than internment camps and still others are simply turned back. siboyani root, native African plant, the root is dug up and must be boiled 5 hours before it can be mashed in the broth. mankata root, native African plant, the root is found in swampy areas. nsimi is a kind of dumpling or bread that is made from cornmeal with oil and water then rolled into balls and eaten dipped into vegetable broth.
Explore the Craft of Writing American Verse Spoon River Verse is a subgenre of Mask or Persona poetry. The term is inspired by the Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters, American Poet (1869-1950). The anthology is a series of poems written as if each poem was being spoken by the dead. The setting is a cemetery in an imaginary western town, Spoon River. The voices make up a 'history' of the town's past residents and their relationships. The Spoon River poem is a poem of voice. The poem speaks from and for a person, not necessarily the poet. The subject, diction and imagery should reflect the character who is speaking through the poem. The elements of the Spoon River Verse are: framed at the discretion of the poet. dramatic. written in the voice of a character of a particular time and place. Usually the voice comes from the grave. The person, the era, the location should all be heard through the words of the poem. Cora Lynn Williams 1834-1849 by Judi Van Gorder Ma'am, 'scuse me Ma'am, you, standin' at that stone. Sorry to bother, but I been tryin' to find my fam'ly, and I need help. Mama told me I'd be honored to marry up with Mr. Williams, he's a fine upstandin' man, an Elder, and Papa says, 'cause of him we only lost one wagon crossin' the Platte... When we got to the Salt Lake he begun right away buildin' a cabin for me and my new sister-wife, Marilda, she's older'n me and is mama to his little girl and two rowdy boys. . I dreamt of havin' a sweet baby of my own, it's a wife's duty, ya know, to bear children, but I never thought it'd hurt so much. I heard Mrs. Griffin, she helps with the birthin', she said somthin' 'bout my baby bein' turned and me so small. I 'member red sticky blood, the sweat, the awful, stabbin' pain and bein' tired, so tired I just had to stop and sleep…… then the cold, so cold it froze my bones. Was that my Mama I heard cryin'? I gotta find my Mama, my baby.... Maybe you could find Mr. Williams for me, he'll know what to do. Here are a few of the ladies from the Spoon River Anthologyby Edgar Lee Masters1915. Ollie Mc Gee Have you seen walking through the village A Man with downcast eyes and haggard face? That is my husban who, by secret cruelty Never to be told, robbed me of my youth and my beauty; Till at last, wrinkled and with yellow teeth, And with broken pride and shameful humility, I sank into the grave. But what think you gnaws at my husband's heart? The face of what I was, the face of what he made me! These are driving him to the place where I lie. In death, therefore, i am avenged. Flossie Cabanis FROM Bindle's opera house in the village To Broadway is a great step. But I tried to take it, my ambition fired When sixteen years of age, Seeing "East Lynne," played here in the village By Ralph Barrett, the coming Romantic actor, who enthralled my soul. True, I trailed back home, a broken failure, When Ralph disappeared in New York, Leaving me alone in the city-- But life broke him also. In all this place of silence There are no kindred spirits. How I wish Duse could stand amid the pathos Of these quiet fields And read these words. Amelia Garrick YES, here I lie close to a stunted rose bush In a forgotten place near the fence Where the thickets from Siever's woods Have crept over, growing sparsely. And you, you are a leader in New York, The wife of a noted millionaire, A name in the society columns, Beautiful, admired, magnified perhaps By the mirage of distance. You have succeeded, I have failed In the eyes of the world. You are alive, I am dead. Yet I know that I vanquished your spirit; And I know that lying here far from you, Unheard of among your great friends In the brilliant world where you move, I am really the unconquerable power over your life That robs it of complete triumph. Minerva Jones I AM Minerva, the village poetess, Hooted at, jeered at by the Yahoos of the street For my heavy body, cock-eye, and rolling walk, And all the more when "Butch" Weldy Captured me after a brutal hunt. He left me to my fate with Doctor Meyers; And I sank into death, growing numb from the feet up, Like one stepping deeper and deeper into a stream of ice. Will some one go to the village newspaper, And gather into a book the verses I wrote?-- I thirsted so for love I hungered so for life!